Friday evening, I started making a Clapotis with lovely Kraemer Silk and Sterling Silver yarn on size 5 needles. (The original pattern calls for worsted weight yarn on size 7s. Kraemer is a fingering weight yarn: 63% superwash merino, 20% silk, 15% nylon and 2% silver fibers--machine wash, dry flat.) (Oh, the February Lady Sweater is going well. It's just getting a bit heavy to work on constantly, so it's resting...and so are my wrists.)
I dropped a few stitches out of the middle of a row at one point. (I put my knitting down midrow, and some of the stitches had slipped off when I picked it back up.) The drop happened at the point where you "K1 twisted, sm, K1, K1 twisted" and the stitches had pulled loose for a couple of rows. I couldn't figure out how to retwist the stitches, so I pulled the whole thing off the needles, intending to frog a few rows, then pick everything back up.
Big mistake. Once you pull the yarn off the needles, your markers no longer are in place. And if you can't read your knitting well enough to judge twisted stitches, then you are in trouble when it comes to figuring out where you are, which stitches need to be twisted, and which stitches desperately need not to be twisted. (This is a pattern where, eventually, you'll deliberately drop a stitch and let it ravel back down, leaving a long crossbar.)
Well, the pattern is easy, so I ripped the whole thing Friday night and started over again on Saturday. This time, I've got markers, I've purled the K1 stitches (where you'll drop stitches, eventually, but it's easier to read "K1 twisted, sm, P1, K1 twisted"), and I've used lifelines. It's a sort of belt-and-suspenders approach--only I've got belt, suspenders, and, um, duct tape.
By the end of Saturday--with some lazy knitting and a couple of dog training sessions--I was almost completely through the first two sections of the scarf (stole? shawl? something long and rectangle-ish?). It's going well, and I really do like the pattern (enough to do it again and again--obviously).
But I kept thinking it looked too loose. Part of the uneven appearance is that the twisted stitches make a different appearance in your work. But still, I was thinking I could frog all of Saturday's work on size 5s and start over on the smaller size 4s. I got up this morning, though, and looked on Ravelry again. Rather than hunt through 8,053 Clapotis projects, searching for ones in Kraemer, I decided to search through 145 projects in Kraemer, looking for Clapotis projects or other projects with nice stretches of stockinette to see what size needles people used. I found a couple of very nice Clapotis projects that were made with size 7 needles (and only a single skein of yarn--I'm feeling better about my having "only" two skeins). And I found another beautiful piece that used 6s.
I'll stick with the 5s. And if I hate it at the end, I'll frog it and reknit with 4s or something.
It's much longer than this, now. This was just a couple of repeats into Section 2 of the pattern. By Saturday night, I'd finished 5 of the 6 repeats in Section 2.
Triple protection: markers, purled stitches, and a lifeline.
In a little bit, I'm heading to SEGA's kennels for a bit more busman's holiday: I'm helping to bathe new arrivals. I've put on work clothes; these work pants may be made of nasty nylon, but they dry super-fast.