Keep the Border or Ditch It?
February 12, 2014
This will be a five-minute note today. I am going to type as fast as I can.
How are we feeling about the Olympics? Why do they feel so polluted? Have you noticed the posture of elite athletes? It is kind of spectacular. I have concluded that pairs skating is one of the most dangerous activities in the world. And all weekend long, every time I looked at Bob Costas’s runny left eye, I immediately got itchy in my own left eye.
Here’s the thing that has sucked away my attention this past week.
This is Birch, the delightful version of the Birch pattern that you begin at the tiny, five-stitch point then keep adding to until you run out of yarn or steam. (It’s on Ravelry, this bottom-up Birch.)
It’s so great because you can screw up the pattern early but have to unravel just a few skinny rows. The original Birch was a killer because you’d cast on 300 stitches and die a little when you found a misnake.
The yarn is Tess’s Designer Yarns Petite Silk, in a sheeny silver that is as light as fluffy air. It is caviar yarn. I unearthed it in Stash Zone B, where I go all too rarely, and it took about four seconds to ditch all other knitting for this stuff.
Here’s where I need your help. Along toward the end of this thing, I got it in my head that I wanted to try a contrasting border. This goes against my fundamental belief that Birch is the most essential, elegantly plain pattern in the world. I adore it. But I had this leetol ball of Blue Heron Mercerized Cotton in the most peacocky colorway, so I did three repeats as I watched a documentary with Hubbo called Let Them Eat Rock, about a Boston band called The Upper Crust. (They dress in 18th-century frocks, breeches, wigs, beauty marks, whatever. They write satirical hard rock songs like “Little Lord Fauntleroy.” “He wears pantaloons./ He likes a French perfume./ He wanna sleep til noon./ He’s his mother’s pride and his father’s joy. . .” etc etc.)
ANYway, this is what came of that:
The mercerized cotton is ever so slightly heavier than the silk. It doesn’t want to be airy. (PS Note what happens to the Petite Silk after blocking. Before shot is above; after shot below. GAH, so wonderful.)
I think it is a problem, not an asset. What think you?