Thursday, August 17, 2006

My So-Called Design, Part 4

OK, enough is enough. Here are the details about what I'm planning (planning being the key word here, since I have yet to take needles to yarn for this project).

I confess that I can't really call this a design, since about the only thing I'm actually composing from scratch is the color combination and sequence. Being a part of Knitsmiths is simultaneously an inspiring and humbling experience, since I'm always surrounded by knitters who actually create amazing designs like these. But what you've got to understand is that this is a big step for me. When I was little, I was into Legos. I was the one who slavishly copied the diagrams, making sure that what I was building exactly matched what was in the pictures. Design something from scratch? You've got to be kidding. The same thing goes for knitting. About the biggest change I've ever made to a pattern is to substitute yarns or to increase length. Nothing earth-shattering, and certainly nothing as free-form as creating my own pattern.

I've been thinking about this project for a while, though, and I thought that this might be my big chance to get over my fears and dive into something that might require more flexibility than just following an existing pattern to the letter.

The sweater I'm planning is for a little girl who will be turning three on November 23. Yep, that's right, her birthdate is 11-23, the first four digits of the Fibonacci sequence. What would be a better birthday gift than a sweater using the classic Fibonacci stripe sequence? Suzanne has recently, and accurately, noted that the Fibonacci sequence as applied to a sweater is less than flattering to some mature female body types, and she provides some intriguing alternatives to the straightforward Fibonacci sequence. But for a three-year-old, and for this three-year-old in particular, Fibonacci's just the ticket.

As for the yarn, I chose Mission Falls 1824 cotton in all different shades of pink and purple, with the odd bit of yellow, green, and cream thrown in for good measure. This was my chance to whip out all those girly colors that I don't ever get a chance to use when I'm knitting for my own three-year-old. Fortunately the gift recipient in question has a fairly, um, adventurous color sense, since I decided to use a different color for each stripe. I think the folks at Windsor Button were about ready to throttle me last week as I kept pulling out different color combinations and rearranging the color sequence about a million times (for the record, I did put the unused skeins back in the right bins. Eventually). The colors are definitely more playful than anything I would ever knit for myself, but that's one of the great things about knitting for little kids, right?

As for the pattern, I'm doing a raglan sleeve design, roughly cribbed from Ann Budd's Knitter's Handy Book of Sweater Patterns. Because, really, what looks niftier than a striped raglan sweater? The way those stripes line up on an angle between the sleeves and the body--too cool. I'm using Budd's book as a guideline for sizing and for basic techniques, but I'm going to force myself to improvise the rest. This whole experimentation thing is a new process for me, and I hope it'll get me to look at knitting in new and more creative ways!


Blogger Thea said...

hey, I'm impressed!

12:43 PM  
Blogger Theresa said...

I do love the way raglan stripes line up. Definitely. And what a fun design process. Do you have the color sequence set or are you winging it?

5:28 PM  
Blogger DianeM said...

I'm so looking forward to the progress on this! You sound like you have planned very thoroughly which is the secret of good design :-) good luck!

9:34 PM  

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