Friday, June 27, 2008

Do the Math

Designing knits sometimes requires it. For me, that means nearly always. Being able to understand this arithmetic, algebra, geometry and trigonometry also comes in quite handy when helping customers decipher directions. Especially when they've been poorly translated from another language to knitspeak.

The pattern calls for "dec for sleeve shaping 1 st alt on every 2nd and 4th row 13 times."

There are 3 ways this has been interpreted -
  1. Decrease on rows 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 14, 16, 18, 20, 22, 24, 26
  2. Decrease on rows 2, 6, 10, 14, 18, 22, 26, 30, 34, 38, 42, 46, 50
  3. Decrease on rows 2, 6, 8, 12, 14, 18, 20, 24, 26, 30, 32, 36, 38
Lets say for the purposes of the example we have a gauge of 5 sts and 7 rows per inch.

The decrease of 13 stitches = 2.6 inches
One can see from the final row number for the decreases that the height of the piece for each option is different.

26 rows = 3.7 inches
50 rows = 7.1 inches
38 rows = 5.4 inches

This also affects the slope and the length of the line of the armhole. These directions were actually for a tank top with a higher neckline. I'm guessing that the third option is the correct one. The neckline in the picture looks too high for option one. The armhole for a tank needs to be higher than a sleeved garment in order to cover up the bra. This eliminates option two for me since there are further directions for straps that would make this armhole way too large an opening. Option three seems just right.

That is enough of this. I'll not bore you with further details on the geometry and trigonometry one could involve. Instead, let's have RECESS!

No comments: