Part of my goal to rush less in 2015 is to get back to sharing more of my design process. With the number of patterns I wrote last year, I didn’t have a lot of time to stop and share my progress, but I want to change that.
In my sketch book I’ve got a little drawing of a sweater with a large mesh panel going down the back with lace panels running along either side of it. When I sat down to start brain storming stitch patter ideas to use for the lace panels, I remembered that I had tried doing something similar when I designed Aiken. Unfortunately that swatch had an increase and decrease distribution that caused the top to curve out like feather-and-fan does, so it was scrapped, but I thought I could make the combination work for straight panels.
I didn’t want to use the same leaves, but I used it as a jumping off point and played with a few variations in my first swatch. I like the variation I used for the second and third motifs best, but I tried a bunch of different things in case something else jumped out at me. I bound off my swatch and blocked it, and that’s when I discovered that the centered double decrease in the middle of the mesh was not going to play nicely with others. Although this wasn’t nearly as bad as the mint green swatch, it still curved out at the top in a way that would not work for my design.
It was back to knitting swatches! I rearranged my mesh so the center stitch was a plain stitch, and that meant changing the lace panels at the sides. This turned out to be a good thing because I ended up moving farther away from the original leaf motif to something a bit more abstract. I liked the direction things were heading, but the motifs still weren’t quite right. My favorite motif of the bunch had a weird misplaced eyelet in it. I knew how I could get rid of it, but I wanted to bind off and see if the whole swatch would behave itself before I started working on small details. This variation on the mesh does curve down a touch, but that will be fine for its placement on the sweater.
And here’s my final swatch with all the details sorted out! This is the version I plan on using on the sweater.