math and the choices it makes

you know when a pattern says

something like ‘decrease 12 sts evenly over the next row’?

that makes me nuts. as a designer if i wanted to do the math myself

i’d be writing my own new pattern, you know?

i always feel frustrated when a pattern

expects me to do the work

instead of instructing

me on what

to do.

this week i stumbled upon

eskmimi’s knitulator’ over on pinterest.

not only is it cute as a button, but it’s waiting there

at all times, ready to do the work. how cool is that?

you just tell it how many stitches

you’re starting with

and how many stitches you want to have at the end of the rowThe-knitulator-knitting-calculator-for-increases-and-decreasesand it will tell you how exactly to space either increases or decreases to get the job done.

it’s sort of a pattern lifeline, right?

i so bookmarked it.

besides finding this fun tool this week,

i also released a new pattern.

the pattern (wait for it) is called ‘lifelined’. yup, it sure is.

well, only i released the first part of the pattern.

as the pattern stands right now,

it uses super bulky yarn

(which if you know me at all, you know i love).

the next part of the pattern is the modifications for using

other yarns: bulky, aran, worsted and dk weight to be exact.

that’s all being tested right now.

when it’s done, i’ll send out a pattern update

so that if you already bought ‘lifelined’

for super bulky yarn,

you’ll get an updated pdf with the numbers for yarns

all the way down to dk weight.

pretty good, right? but, there’s more.

also being test knit right now

is a slight variation on the variations that can make a similar neck wrap (or shawl)

out of sport weight or fingering weight yarn.

this pattern of variations might get knit up in the heavier weights, too

if the math works out. still in the number crunching phase at the moment.

so, while i’m pondering the options

and you’re waiting for them to be seeable,

at least i can show you ‘lifelined’ as it is in the super bulky of lana grossa ‘ambiente’.'lifelined' collage with back shotit’s not a triangle, but has five points.

so when deciding just how to drape it around yourself, there are lots of options.

obviously, i love options.

i’m feeling chatty, but itching to knit,

so i’ll end here and go play with some yarn.

i give you permission to do the same.

but only if you smile.

‘released’ taken from 16:36 of acts.

another way to travel

despite the fact

that there are so many pretty patterns out there vying for attention,

there are still some that grab me and won’t let go of my thoughts.

‘the songlines collection’ by ambah o’brien

is five patterns

that have done exactly that.

i had never heard of ‘songlines’ or ‘dreaming tracks’ before.

curious by nature, my fingers ran (not walked) to google them.

the results are fascinating.

Instead of making maps, the Indigenous peoples of Australia navigated vast distances by singing songlines (also called dreaming tracks) “in the appropriate sequence, often traveling through the vast deserts of Australia’s interior.”

“Since a songline can span the lands of several different language groups,…(describing the location of landmarks, waterholes, and other natural phenomena) different parts of the song are said to be in those different languages. Languages are not a barrier because the melodic contour of the song describes the nature of the land over which the song passes. The rhythm is what is crucial to understanding the song.”

the songlines collectionafter reading that,

i went back to look at ambah’s designs again.

now i see the red sands of the simpson desert, and the grey of worn ancient stones.

look how she’s mixed the colorways to create such depth and texture

like the ‘contours of the land’.

i admit to an overactive imagination, and yet

i can almost see the things that the loops and swirls of these shawls

might represent on a long trek across the desert.

i can almost here the rhythm of the people’s

footfalls as the older ones

teach the younger the dreaming tracks by which they will one day understand

their native land and describe it to their own children…

my favorite here is ‘yindela‘,

because in a way it reminds me of the landscape of my own history.yindela

once i decide on the colors that will mean the most to me,

i’m looking forward to the rhythm

of the knitting.

as i remember the songs of my own childhood,

each stitch will become part of my personal ‘songline’.

how very, very cool is that?

maybe now you want to win a copy of

‘the songlines collection’ for your very own? okay.

leave a comment below saying which of the five you’d most like to knit.

if you want to, tell us why you chose that one, too

(be sure to leave your rav name

or some other way for me to reach you if you win).

leave your comment by midnight this sunday, october 11th.

then, on monday the 12th, i’ll pick a winner

by random number generator.

can’t wait to read

what you’d choose (and why).

 ‘desert’ taken from 14:3 of exodus.