WORKING REPORT – BLUE PONCHO

Now with Dragon put to bed, I can turn to my daughter’s blue lacy poncho. Over the weekend we went paging through pattern books and looking at old projects. She lit upon a couple of lacy looking stitches that she liked.

The first is the mock cable I used as the edging for Justin’s Blanket on wiseNeedle. The thing didn’t photograph well there, and the instructions for that counterpane are in prose, so here’s a wider version of the same idea. (Apologies for the lousy quality of these charts. For some reason my standard Visio to Fireworks graphics prep cycle is spitting out oddlynon-uniform results today.)

The second is a lacy panel adapted from a wider pattern appearing in B. Walker’s Second Treasury of Knitting Patterns. The original isn’t graphed, starts in a different place of the repeat, and is set up for multiple iterations of the ribbon. I pared it down to just one repeat to make a self-contained panel:

Both are lace knitting patterns in that they have something happening on every row. If one is knitting in the flat (back and forth on two needles) you can see that maneuvering to do a P2tog tbl (purl two together through the back of the loop) on a wrong-side row might be awkward. Whichever panel is chosen, it will probably alternate between sections of K2 P2 or K3 P3 rib.

As far as swatching goes, I’ve been playing with my de-plyed Paternayan. Thinking that the 2-ply result of my pains was rather thicker than sport, but thinner than DK, and that I wanted a lacy effect, I started swatching on US #9s (5.5mm), and worked my way up through needle sizes to #13s (9mm). I’m wavering between #11s (8mm) and the #13s. More swatching is in order, especially swatching to see if the 11 or 13 looks best with the plain old ribbed part, and to make a nice, even piece to determine gauge over both textures.

In the mean time, I’ve decided to run the color stripes on the vertical rather than the horizontal. That means I’ll figure out how wide the rectangles will need to be for this poncho, figure out some pleasing alternation/panel widths for the chosen lacy part and ribbed sections, then decide which panels need to be in which of my three available colors (blue variegated, plus wedgewood and slate blue). Once that’s decided it’s cast-on time, working the color stripes with Intarsia joins between them – each from its own ball.

Did I mention “Figure out if I’ve got enough yarn?” Gotta do that to, especially because seven skeins (3 variegated blue, 2 each of my two blues) de-plyed into 10.5 skeins (4.5 variegated, 3 of each blue)equals 1,764 yards That’s 756 yards of variegated blue, plus 504 yards each of the two blues. In total it should be enough, but I may need to get very clever with color placements to make sure I don’t run out of anything.

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