Sunday, July 5, 2009

Entre Nous, Entrelac...

When I said I'd be jumping in at the deep end, I had no idea exactly how deep and murky the water would be. Lace I can handle, but the entrelac is proving to be quite a challenge--which is fine since I like challenges.
I cast on for the stole, worked the 20 rows of seed stitch, finished the triangles at the base, and then realized I had no idea how to proceed. Gulp! The first logical step would really have been to look for a good tutorial rather than trying to get started without knowing what I was doing.
Finally, after much Google-fu, I discovered that YouTube doesn't seem to have any tutorials on entrelac. From there, I went to About.com and found one with nice pictures and crappily written text which could use a hefty dose of red pencil. Naturally, without a good explanation, the pictures aren't quite as useful. Next, I went to a blog with pictures and a nice clear description of which stitches get picked up at which point. And, after working the first three tiers of blocks while staring at the tutorial, I figured I could proceed on my own until I forgot a step.
One problem, which is pretty minor, is that it doesn't recommend slipping the first stitch of the row on the selvage edge of each block and side triangle. Slipped stitches make life much easier when it comes time to pick them up again for the beginning of a new row of blocks. Another problem, which is probably due to some error I'm making, is that I occasionally end up with a hole that isn't all that dissimilar to the one I get when I'm working the first row of the gusset after all those stitches have been picked up. It's a little unsightly, but since this is a trial run, I'm not expecting to get it right the first time. I hate picking up stitches, but for socks and entrelac (among other things!), it's a necessary evil. It ranks with casting on, which I also hate... but I don't think it's possible to knit without casting on somehow. On the other hand, I'm also learning how to knit backwards, so I'm really getting more out of this than just the basics for entrelac.
The stole is on hold until I'm sure I'm ready for it, which means I'm fiddling with a ball of Noro Kureyon in what I feel is a rather unfortunate colorway--I hate pink, and there's plenty of pink in it--which probably isn't enough to produce more than a giant potholder.

3 comments:

the Lady said...

Bravo for tackling entrelac! I would like to, but haven't been able to decipher the directions yet either. It's on my list.

theyarnwhisperer said...

I know the feeling. I once thought I was going to pull my hair out trying to master brioche!

KnitNana said...

Oh...that's pretty! Hmm..I have 2 sks of pretty blues, purples, and greens in Noro - that would look GREAT in it! Thanks for the inspiration...

Hang in there, you'll get it (I made the entrelac bag at Knitpicks a couple of years ago) - You might try knitting into the BACK of the stitch that usually makes a hole? I do that on my socks picking up the gusset and it twists the yarn up nicely...(and you're right, I do slip the stitches in entrelac).
(((Hugs)))