Wednesday, 1 August 2007

In The Mood For An Interlude

There was a lovely design for a cardigan in a pattern book in my 'library'. It dates back to the '80s, as does most of my knitting literature, as this was the last time I had knitted. It was designed by Diane Ayre of Lister Handknitting, in the book The Pure New Wool Designer Knitwear Collection, published 1986.

Here is a close-up of the stitch pattern.

It got me thinking about the basket weave, and what would happen if you used two colours, one for the stocking stitch parts, and one for the reverse ss parts.

I did a small swatch to try it out.
It didn't behave quite how I expected.
I thought the reverse ss would recede, the way it does when it's used as a background in cable work. Instead, it puffs forward, like it does for the reverse ss bands on the Byzantium hat and the colour separator ridges on Crocus. And of course, with the dark colour puffing forward, the effect is not what I wanted. I wanted the light bits to stand out, and the darker bits to recede, further emphasising the basket weave pattern.

Here is the back of the work. It's the first piece of stranded knitting I've ever done. It really looks in the photo as if the strands are pulling the fabric, but in reality, it stretches out just fine with no pulling.

It has me pondering a deeply philosophical question - why is it that reverse stocking stitch sometimes recedes and other times stands out? What makes the difference?

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