I would like a typo better

In my post the other day, I wrote that there would be 1600 rows in the edging, and Katie (who is surely a hopeful person, full of optimism) wrote and said “Surely that’s a typo.”  Vickiebee even said “Maybe it’s 1600 stitches?”

No, my petals, not a typo, and not stitches – though maybe not as bad as you’re thinking. I am cleverly drawing pictures here, so as not to take detailed pictures of the blankie that would give it all away to Alex and Meg. (Plus it’s really scrunched up on a circular.)  This is a pretty classic way of approaching this,  if you’re thinking of Shetland Island shawls, which, like most normal people, I always am.

First, I cast on provisionally, and I knit the centre.  (That’s a lie. First I knit a swatch, wash it, and block it. That tells me how many stitches to cast on, and how long to carry on for if I want it to be roughly square.)

begin 2017-03-23

When the centre is finished, I pick up stitches all the way around, and unpick the provisional cast-on, pick those up too, and now I’m equipped to work in the round. (Here, you will note, I make that sound like cake. It’s totally not – in the classic sense, this picking up business is pretty easy. The Shetland Shawls are garter base lace, and so the ratio for picking up is 1 stitch for each ridge. I threw that simplicity and ease on the fire and tossed on a litre of gasoline, by knitting the centre in stockinette based lace. To pick up all the way around I took my gauge, and did the math. The number of stitches widthwise (let’s say it’s 20 to 10cm.) divided by the number of rows per 10cm. (Let’s call that 25.) Then it’s just a matter of representing that as a fraction (stay with me, I know that’s a math word) putting stitches over rows. 20/25. Then I reduce that fraction (cast your mind back to middle school, you’ll be fine) and it’s 4/5. (See that?) That means I have to pick up 4 stitches for every 5 rows. In practice, that’s pick up 4, skip one, pick up 4, skip one…. You dig? Usually I practice this on the swatch, then do it on the blankie, marking the corners as I go.

Then I choose my stitch patterns (or invent them, in many cases) write them up as charts, centre them along the sides, and start knitting. I increase one stitch either side of the marked corner stitches ever other row – so I’m increasing by 8 stitches every other round.

and next 2017-03-23

This makes fetching mitred corners, and means the blankie gets bigger all the way around, every round. When it’s big enough (who really knows when that is) I choose or invent an edging (in this particular case, it’s a bit of both) and begin to apply the edging.  I cast on (provisionally, again) however many stitches are in the edge (in this case, it will be about 20) and then start working back and forth making a long skinny edging. Every time I work a right side row, I knit the last stitch of the edge together with a stitch from the body of the blanket.

finallyedging 2017-03-23

That means that every two rows, one stitch gets consumed. When I’m all done, the final row of the edging is grafted to the provisional cast on of the edging, and I’m done.

So, back to the point up at the top? 1600 rows? I was wrong. I’ve currently got  898    stitches on the needle (or will, when I’m done with this little garter band) and with 2 rows to consume each one? (Plus extras to get round the corners, but let’s not quibble.)

1796 rows to go, with an average of 20 stitches in each row, that’s 35 920 stitches left to knit.

And that, my brave friends, is not a typo. I counted. May the force be with me. The edging begins in 4 and a half rounds.

198 thoughts on “I would like a typo better

  1. Oh lord, the math makes my head spin. But the knitting I understand and the drawings help a lot. Still, the numbers are awfully big. But you can do it!

    • I was thinking the same thing! Time for aspirin…but Harlot can do it if anyone can. I just hope Meg holds out a little longer.

    • Me too, that beautiful pen caught my eye. But I also winced at the closeness between the INK and the knitting. Eegads… too close for comfort.

      • Looks like a Pilot Metropolitan fountain pen. I own a few and they’re lovely. Amazon carries them, in case you were wondering how to get your own.

        • Definitely a Metropolitan! Great inexpensive pens that write beautifully. Perfect intro fountain pens or throw-it-in-your-purse pens for anyone.

          If you want to support an awesome family-owned local US retailer instead of Amazon, may I recommend http://www.gouletpens.com for all of your fountain pen and ink needs? Brian and Rachel Goulet started it out of their garage, and now they have close to 10 employees. They’re located not far from me in Virginia. Their selection and prices are great, and their customer service is absolutely top-notch.

          They carry Pilot Metropolitan (only like $15!) and a zillion other pens. I’m not affiliated, just a very happy customer who wants to see them keep thriving.

          • any one who uses a fountain pen is clearly in a winning class and can finish anything she wishes to. and thanks all for the sources for fountain pens–I have one really good one I hesitate to carry around lest I lose it, so it stays on my desk.

          • Bought my husband a Pilot Metropolitan, thanks to y’all. Usually I’m asking HIM for something inspired by the Harlot…now it’s his turn! Happy dance!

          • My people! I’m not going to fess up about how many Fountain pens I own, but several are a Metropolitan, including that lovely shade of green (that was my first). I second the find folks at Goulet Pens (unless Canada has an equally lovely version of Brian and Rachel).

          • I’ve been wishing for several years that I could find a rollerball pen like a particular old favorite that ran out of ink long ago–and the Pilot Metropolitan Rollerball is apparently the one I had. I had no idea. Now I do. Thank you thank you thank you!

          • Oh, my goodness. I literally just kept staring at your comment trying to figure out if I wrote it and the dates on basically Stephanie’s entry and every single comment (lol) were just wrong, because I don’t remember writing it, but I totally good have. Except I’m a bit further south in NC. The name and Goulet/Metro love are the same. That’s just all kinds of crazy. Seriously, I think we may be related. Hi from “down south”!! 😀

          • Thanks for the recommendation, I’ll check them out. Love supporting family businesses.

          • I went to their site and it’s gorgeous. A dream place for the pen aficionado. I ordered up one of their funky pens and am calling it an early birthday gift for myself. 🙂

        • I love my Metropolitan, too! Also, I second (or third) Goulet Pens. Phenomenal customer service and family owned.

          Stephanie, I am curious which ink you are using. 🙂

  2. Since we can’t see the blanket yet, I am going to focus on your pen. I love fountain pens and yours is a really cool looking one. It looks like a brushed aluminum case? I tried to enlarge the photos to get a better look, but it didn’t work. Once you are done with the blanket, I would really appreciate it if you could tell me what kind it is. Please don’t stop knitting for this-I can wait! The blanket is more important!!

  3. I’m really fine with all the math (which somehow makes the whole thing sound straightforward and doable!), but the magnitude of the knitting takes my breath away!

    Neither of my children is at the “having a baby” stage of life, but I’m thinking I should start a blanket now to have any chance at all. I put that type of edging on a Pi shawl once–i repeat, this takes my breath away!

  4. while it looks and sounds a marathon NOTHING beats
    White lace baby blanket and the knitted on edge just finishes it no seems!!!!!!
    I have done “several” and I’m always amazed when they are finished and blocked.
    My husband on the other hand, as I’m knitting on the edge takes out his hearing aides.

  5. Since I was picturing the “row” as being once around the blanket, hearing it’s 20 stitches a round makes 1796 rounds sound daunting, but doable in this lifetime….and maybe not as likely to be a king-size blanket. May the force be with you. I know this is going to be an incredible heirloom of a gift when you are done.

    PS: Knowing Katie well, I can say that she is a hopeful person and possibly the most optimistic person I know. In fact, I think I have referred to it as “relentless optimism” and “severe Pollyanna syndrome” in the past. And I guess that has rubbed off, cuz I say “YOU CAN DO IT!”

  6. Does that mean you dropped the 2nd border? If it takes you 1 min to do each row (about 20 sts, and you’re probably faster than that w/stst but who knows with what you’re actually doing), then it will take you: ~30 hours, (29.93 to be exact) which really doesn’t sound so bad and quite do-able for someone who knits regularly. See, you can do this Steph!

  7. 36,000 stitches left.
    How many weeks left? 4?
    That’s 1285 stitches a day?
    That can’t be right.
    It is right.
    53 stitches an hour.
    So much love.

  8. OMG! I would not let my baby get within a hundred miles of this masterpiece. I would run out and have it archivally framed with precious metals and all the gems and pearls I could afford. Then I would hang it in the most prominent spot in the house with velvet museum ropes to protect it from cheeky viewers. And a nice little engraved plaque with details next to it. Nothing too showy, but of superior quality, of course. Actually, I can hardly wait to see it gently swaddling the baby.

  9. Yep with 20 stitches you CAN do this, with a fair sprinkling of panic still, but not as much as with a whole round of stitches and 1796 rows!
    I post rarely, always find I come to it when everything has been said, but i so enjoy your blog, thank you. x

  10. You know, I totally glossed over 1600 because I guess I was hoping it was a typo. And I’m sorry that it is a typo but in the wrong direction, if that makes sense. May the force be with you!

  11. Sending good karma to you as you knit like the wind and to Meg as she enters this final stage of her pregnancy. Just breath, stretch occasionally, and it will all be alright!

  12. I’m guessing everyone who was horrified was thinking of what you are calling the “border” section as the “edging”…I have to admit, I was having that thought as well and was wondering if this was a queen sized blanket. Your explanation has cleared that right up, done that way even 1796 seems a bit less daunting (still daunting, but doable)

  13. All right, you’re gonna need help. I have just poured a glass of red wine and am opening the dark chocolate on your behalf. I am your Surrogate Support Team till this puppy is done. You want me to take a bubble bath, let me know. No sacrifice too great.

  14. Anyone placing bets on the size of this “baby” blanket when you’re done? I’m sure you’ll finish in time (or darn close to it) but your past history has me thinking this will fit a California King-sized bed. For those who aren’t familiar with that size, it’s as wide as a King but a bit longer. Where on earth will you find to block this one?

    (Seriously, though, good luck with the blanket and best of luck to Meg. I’m sure she’s eager to be done, too)

  15. Best wishes for speedy and error-free knitting. Also, best wishes for Meg on an uneventful last few weeks of pregnancy.

    Worst case scenario, the kid gets the blanket a week or two after he’s born. You’ve got this.

  16. I bow down to your skill, determination, and hard work. I’m certain you will persevere and complete before the grandson arrives. All hail the Yarn Harlot!

  17. I’m due in August, and just swatched for a modestly sized worsted weight blanket on size nines. Yet somehow I feel as you do right now!
    I also got married within a week of Meg so I’m feeling very sympatico with her life right now! 🙂

  18. Being mathy, I figure 30 sts per minute (that’s me. I hear you knit fast). That means about 20 hours of work left. Definitely doable.

    • Ah yes. The math can sometimes induce panic and sometimes create relief. I love that your math allows me to get off the panic train. Facts and data for the win!

  19. I love this, the thought process and calculations resonate completely, but the ambition of the undertaking is totally awesome – that you would do it just signifies the total love this little being will inspire and receive over the coming years which makes me feel a little mushy inside. Big hugs to you and yours at this exciting time.

  20. I rarely use the word “gobsmacked”. I feel like it doesn’t even do justice to my reaction of the sheer volume of stitches you have described !!!!
    Yarn Speed!!!

  21. I knew what you would be doing and that rows was correct. But that’s a great explanation and I love the diagram. Sounds like you have enough yarn. I recall certain other times…. You can do this!

  22. You’ve got this. Totally.

    Look at the bright side – you weren’t crazy enough to decide to spin the yarn too! Maybe for the next one….

  23. It’s been nice knowing you and you should know that we’ll miss you when you’re gone. But what a blaze of glory!

  24. Thank you for taking the time to explain the construction and the math. I had NO IDEA about the proportional pick up! After this epic masterpiece has been completed, the grandchild masterpiece appropriately swaddled and saturated in love AND Her Majesty The Queen gilds your circs, bestows you with a title and a timeshare in Balmoral, would you share what provisional cast on you use for the non- crocheters? (My wrists don’t flex-crochet is an impossibility much to my grandmother’s dismay)
    With every stitch filled with love,hope,dreams and all things wonderful, good and magical, I have great confidence the future of humankind.
    And how do you still have points left on those needles? Why don’t you have a needle sponsor? Do you have a preference that we need to encourage? 🙂
    You are a fast knitter. This can and will be done. Due the the vast importance of completion of this blanket, Time has agreed to s-L-o-w down almost to a standstill. Of course you may not be able to straighten your fingers when you’re done but you’ll look younger.

    • There are non crocheted provisional cast on methods. Still using waste yarn. Check out some of the books about casting on and maybe even a, dare I say, YouTube video. But I like the one that you hold two yarns and treat the waste like the cable of the circular if you have ever done Cat Bhrodie’s, I know I spelled it wrong, mobius cast on. I am sure there are tons of other methods that will work for you without ever having to pick up a crochet hook.

  25. May the force be with you Steph. And thank you for that wonderfully taught, including visual aids, knitting math lesson. So clear and, may I say, darn good of you to help us out here in the blog.

    KNIT ON my favorite author and person I want to be when I grow up. KNIT ON.

  26. I love the detailed math, and while I’m a “math person” I do not like it in my knitting. Your brain works in a special way, like all great artists!

  27. Knit, no need to post. The collective will of the blog is sending speed and limber fingers. Have a nice comfy chair, load up the audible books. Sleeping and eating, plenty of time for that when you’re done. Some photos when you’re is all I ask. Godspeed Harlot! Knit On

  28. Well. I have always avoided figuring out the exact number of stitches for any project, even though I have a math-oriented mind and would kind of like to know. Now I know why I have never done that! Good luck!

  29. You knit like the wind – I know you’ll be done in no time! I can’t wait to see the finished blanket..and, hopefully, your beautiful grandchild. I have only one grandchild (so far), he’s 18 months old and is the apple of my eye. You will LOVE being a grandparent. Best wishes to you and to your daughter and son-in-love.

  30. I have no doubt that you can do it, Steph. You’re an awesome knitter and that is a beautiful design. Your precious grandson is going to love this blanket forever.

    My daughter was 6 days late when I decided it was because I hadn’t finished her blanket. I stayed up very late to finish it and my water broke at 3:30am. I’ll bet your grandson will wait for you.

  31. I made a shawl with an edging like that and although it was maddening (especially when you confuse yourself on the first corner) it looks great and was totally worth the effort.

  32. By some quick math I did today, I think that’s about 4.5 socks (for my, admittedly, size 10W feet), which may or may not be a useful or encouraging metric. But there was that time you did a sock a day for a thing, and there has to be a limit to how complicated you can make 20 stitches of lace, right?

    • LOL… very true, but socks can be knitted on the train, at dinner, with the TV on, in a crowd of people… this, I’m certain, is a “please go away and be quiet while you do it” project…

      • With that many rows there’s going to be a lot of repeats (and Shetland lace tends to be fairly simple to memorize anyhow), so I’m sure it’s something she can do with lots of distractions. The thicker yarn she’s using might be more of an issue, but it’s still probably small enough to be portable.

  33. Oh my. I’ve just gone and poured a large glass of wine. Shall I come over and keep one filled for you? (I’m going to insist it be white, though.)

  34. My math-geeky husband would be delighted to know that his gramma knit him a blankie with all of that math in it. He would be fascinated. I hope your grandson loves that part too.

  35. So many rows, so little time. I know you knit like the wind, but it’s still a daunting task. You have my best wishes — maybe there will be plane delays and you will get some really good knitting done. Good luck!!

  36. Steph: The blanket’s not through until the kid gets his driver’s license.

    Joe: She’s going to need at least a few more gallons of coffee.

  37. Oh good Lord. I’ll never be able to do anything like that. It doesn’t make a lick of sense to my addled brain 🙁 But I’m sure it’s gonna be stupendous!

  38. Once I knit my wedding skirt in about 60 days. Lace weight shawl turned into a circle skirt. Just did the math and the edging was about 38,000 stitches. Crazy sauce!

  39. You can do it Stephanie! I have every faith in you. I can’t wait to see it finished and your little grandson all wrapped up in a knitted cuddle. I bet you anything you’ll have it finished in plenty of time and have a little matching layette set finished too! Sending positive knitting vibes from Scotland. x

  40. Key fact missed – this maths relates to why we knit for those we love. Plus of course it passes the time whilst awaiting the exciting arrival of a grandson.

    Just imagine how twitchy Steph would be without this knitting to work on, maybe this is why the finish date of shawls is so close to due dates. A knitter’s coping strategy.

  41. Ah, but the thing I like about knit on edging is that, although there are a ridiculous number of rows, they are short (a dozen or two stitches). Which means that the pattern can be memorized. Between not being tied to a page and only having a few stitches per row, they go much faster than the rounds you’ve been knitting.

  42. I think, perhaps, even though my children are only almost 4 and almost 8, that I should cast on now for some sort of heirloom blanket for their offspring. It seems the only reasonable choice.

    I admire your fortitude. And your incredible dedication to your grandbaby. Your grandmothering skills are top notch already… I can’t wait to see what happens when you get that baby in your arms. xo

  43. I have to know…how long does it take you to knit 20 stitches? That X 1700+ rows and you know when you will be done. Just tell baby to wait ’til then…

  44. Um, Stephanie….
    Thanks for the construction and math lessons for all of us who might have been confused. But shouldn’t you be knitting?
    Just tell the Blog that you have lots of rows to go and that you’ll explain it all later.
    Now please go and knit like the wind. Meg is going to want to have that baby pretty soon!

  45. Yup, been there, done that, made a shawl big enough to cover a double bed. I pre-knit all my large projects in Excel. It lets me check that my pattern is error free and I have a way to track my progress and yarn consumption. I track my stitches per day, grams per stitch, days to go to completion and, if there is a deadline, the number of days I will be early (I try not to be late). I even have graphs.

      • OK – you start by charting the design in Excel – I use symbols as similar to the ones in the chart as I can get. It takes a while but is MUCH quicker than ripping later on. Then I set up a formula to count the symbols per row, set up a formula to multiply by the stitches per symbol (both before and after they are worked) to make sure that I have the right number of stitches at the end of a row to work the next one. This makes sure that I pick up any issues with the chart or with the maths (especially if I have made some changes).

        Then, you just need to add a column with the date that you finished a particular row and a column to show when you started a new ball and a bit of conditional summing gives you all the other numbers.

        It does help if you are fairly familiar with Excel.

    • Yeah, me too, seriously, I would love to learn that! Excel rocks anyway, but I didn’t realize you could use it for such things.

    • same!! it helps me know I’m actually making progress, as I can watch the percentage complete go higher and higher… also helps me adjust for my shape, if needed. LOVE tracking the numbers… Excel is my best friend. LOL…

    • I don’t bother with the full-out preknitting, but I’m going to second Excel for tracking large projects (especially with interesting shapes/construction). Deals very well with “will I make the deadline” “do I have enough yarn” and “when will the @%^# thing be done”

  46. The math is definitely beyond me but the picture helps me make sense of it! Do you ever imagine doing something to your knitting and think you’re totally insane? Your edge just made me realise in not crazy, that it can work! Good luck the other commenters that broke down the math into how many sts per hour you have, makes it seem like peanuts 53 sts in an hour pfft you’re the yarn harlots more like 53 sts a min haha.

  47. Holy sheep s*#t! I’ve been dying to know how you design these blankets in the hopes of putting one in my daughter’s hope chest. But…seriously….#mindblown. The End.

  48. Ok, went back and reread….I get it. In theory. I kind of had the right idea except for the edging row. I might be able to approach this, AT SOME POINT, now. Or later. Probably later…Much later..

  49. knit, Steph, knit. then share I am interested in how you incorporated the parents this time. I love that you do that it makes the heirloom blanket even more special.

  50. You’ve done more, with less time. Not recently, but you’ve definitely done it. Don’t let the ghost of Christmas recently past spook you!

  51. The number of rows is larger, and yet, I’m relieved. I was thinking 1600 rows all the way around the blanket and was considering sending you more coffee! Don’t worry, I would have triple checked that it wasn’t decaf. : )

  52. Oh my gosh, sending positive knitting vibes your way. That’s a lot. It already has been a lot. That was a great “tutorial” about blanket construction by the way!

  53. Oh wow. That’s a lot of knitting. And a lot of math.
    …This may not have been the point of this post at all, but now I really want to cast on for a Shetland shawl.

  54. The Blog is behind you – sending positive vibes, prayers, and mental support! #YayTeamSupport

    The love you are pouring into this blanket is going to wrap your grandchild in the very best blessings of life. Hugs to you and yours!

  55. Well that is much smarter than the blanket I am making with the centre piece, the four quadrants and the edging all separate and then I have to SEW THEM TOGETHER. I will do the edging your way though. And next time I will do it all your way.

  56. So what did you think – your daughter was a giraffe and was going to be pregnant for 15 or so months? Your friend Debbi is right – you should have already been panicking at least a month ago!! Good Luck Stephanie.

  57. Having abandoned careful reading after far too long in academia, I managed to believe that you had 898 stitches upon which you had to work nearly 2000 rows. I did the math and thought, “Nope. Isn’t going to happen.” As it is, I think you’re in comfortably on track for a timely outcome. As long as your estimate of another four weeks before b-day is accurate.

  58. Oh Steph. I can’t handle math, and with two non-conforming children I can only dream of grandchildren (I do though, it could happen).. but I know this. I didn’t become a crochet/knitter until my kids were much older. The idea of knitting for the children they might someday call their own? Brings tears to my eyes. It’s the love that goes into the stitches that makes it worth it, 1,600 or 1,700, or 200,000. You inspire me to think bigger and knit better and I just wanted to say thank you.

  59. Now. How could you go about showing us all those lovely pen shots and NOT tell us what ink you’re using?! (Some sort of grey, looks like – I’m a big fan of Iroshizuku Kiri-same myself.)

  60. You always have that scratch-your-eyes-out desperation at the end of every blanket. Here’s wishing the best for another miraculous finish! We’re rooting for you!

  61. So I think that a stitch, in your capable hands, takes about as much time as a heartbeat. Average adult heart-rate = 70 beats per minute. 60 minutes in an hour= 4,200 stitches per hour. That works out to 8.5 hours. As long as your heart doesn’t skip a beat, or accelerate madly when you get the call that your daughter has gone into labor. Don’t screw this up!

  62. There is something intensely gratifying about crunching the numbers that makes a project envision-able and doable, even at insane numbers like that. Go Stephanie!

  63. So many interesting things in this post & comments! The blanket, of course, and the explanation with the math of how it will all work –love it. The awesome fountain pens! The Excel spreadsheet knitters! Megan looks great! My first baby was born 15 days after his “due” date. Luckily for us, my midwives were OK with waiting til he was fully baked. :-)) You Could have a little more time than you think! Either way, I have complete confidence that the baby will be born and the blanket will get finished…

    • Steph isn’t going to get that much time – current practice guidelines in Ontario call for 42 weeks at the latest, and they generally aim for induction at around 41+ 3, so that they have some wiggle room if the date for the induction doesn’t work. (Guess whose babies like to stay inside for a long time?)

  64. Oh Stephanie! The love of previous and future generations you are placing in every stitch!! The history and first-hand observations your Megan and her family KNOW about your ” knitting for those you love”. Wow. What an undertaking. It just shows what Moms will do for their daughters.
    Thank you for your clear images and explainations! You make me feel like “I” could even do it! Me? Make something like the Yarn Harlot??? Squeeeel!!
    Indiana, USA love to all of your house, and kiss-ies for the sweet one when deliverable. ~ Amy

  65. That is the basic construction of the Hansel Hap (Full) Shawl. This construction is a lot of fun and lends itself to complete creativity. I am behind on my hap baby blanket. If I stay up a while, I can get it done….like knit right now. It’s 10:35 pm EST right now and I am in CT. Over 1700 rows is a lot but you can do it. Just…stay up late…like me!

  66. Oh.

    I get it now.

    I thought it was a typo, too.

    I like math (and I’m pretty good at it, too, with my buddy MS Excel in hand) but I’d have never groked (grokked?) without the diagram and translating in my head to crochet.

    Genius, you are.

  67. Huzzah for all the fountain pen lovers of the world! My Maman started my collection with a gift of them from France. They add such a beauty to writing; it’s the nibs.

    I was wondering what sort of insane edging would be 1600 (now 1600+) rows. Shoet rows make much more sense!

    Knit like the wind! Sending “blankie before baby!” vibes your way! 🙂

  68. And that is why I hesitate to calculate total counts (I crochet, but the same applies) – because if I did, I’d probably become paralyzed. Knit on, fearless knitter.

  69. This post reminds me how much you truly love this baby. When the moment comes and you are able to meet this amazingly special person, I know that love will be returned.

  70. I know it’s the weekend and you don’t post on the weekends. I know you dedicated a huge amount of time that could have been spent knitting in constructing this lucid and helpful post. I know you now need to dedicate all available time to knitting this beautiful blanket for your beloved grandson-to-be.

    I know all of this.

    And all I want right now is to know how the blanket’s going.

  71. Pen=fantastic with lots of fans
    Blanket=coming along nicely and thanks for listening to Debbi and not doing another border.
    Baby=I sure hope he waits until after the retreat to make his appearance as I really want to see you this week. Or he can come on Thursday and you will have the excuse of being out of town with the blanket so you can finish it before you get home to hold him. Megan’s sisters and aunts will be happy to stand in for you.

  72. I salute you. I hope Meg’s wee one holds on!

    Aaaaand I’m all kinds of excited that you use the same kind of pen I do. Fine or medium nib? Inquiring minds…

    Please answer that AFTER the blanket/shawl is done. I can wait.

  73. Rams sister here — the only thing better than a Pilot Metropolitan fine point is the fact that Pilot just brought out the Metropolitan with a stub nib. Stylish writing with zero effort. (Not currently available through gouletpen.com but I’m pretty sure I got mine from jetpens.com, another very reliable source. Best $15 metal pen you’ll buy!

    • Just to add – I had to look up stub nibs, they’re also called italic nibs (the term I knew them by).

      Thanks for the chance to learn something new! Loving the pen discussion, my love of Parker fountain pens (one for the desk, one for the handbag) feels a lot less weird here.

  74. Stephanie,
    Have you considered a narrower edging? EZ has a shawl in one of her books, with a Stoneington edging, named after a per-revolutionary era shawl in a museum in Stoneington, CT,. Like, 6 or 8 sts making a zig-zag Van Dyke border with lacy holes forming the incs.. Cute and not nearly so many sts.
    We never know how long Meg will wait…
    Julie in San Diego

  75. Not to be unneccesarily crass, but my first thought was “well, sh*t”. My second was “what lovely arithmetic!”

  76. So, among others, I check your blog every day for your wit and knitting updates. I haven’t read from the begining because, I’d fall into a dark rabbit hole and never make it to bed that night. I would however love a random page link for the days that you don’t post. How nice it would be to hop back a few years and see what you were writing then!

    Love the blanket! You’re crazy! In the time you’ve knit that blanket I’ve managed half a shawl. And my children were gone for a week!

  77. Will you have a space big enough to block this blanket? The last baby blanket you made went over the edges of your bed.

  78. HOLY CRAPOLA! You just gave me a headache with all that math lingo. I have to take two Aleve and have a nap now. A bazillion stitches/rounds to go? Not a problem for the YH. May the leprechauns be with you & the Blarney Stone too.

  79. Assuming you knit one stitch a second, that’s about 10 hours of knitting. Totally doable, and I’m sure you knit faster than that.

    • In fact, if she went into labour right now, you’d still probably get it done, although perhaps not the blocking and drying.

    • I was going to say the same thing. Easily done in a day of knitting. I very recently did about 40,000 stitches of lace edging for my daughter’s blanket within 12 hours. I knitted from 7am to almost 7pm only stopping to pee and eat. It’s very doable.

  80. I love seeing your schematic – it makes sense to me and is helping me understand some of the lace patterns I’m considering for my first shawl knit. Good luck on the blanket!!

  81. I realize there is no time for typing…only knitting, wine and bodily necessities, but JEEZ the suspense is killing me! Just kidding, because I have complete faith in you. (Maybe not kidding, just the teensiest bit.)

    • Stephanie is at a Strung Along retreat this weekend, per the sidebar. Doubt we’ll get a post until Monday or Tuesday. **phew** Worry over.

  82. Thanks Steph. You explained clearly what a young woman at a Whole Foods coffee shop breezily explained as easy but I didn’t have time to ask her about the picking up part. I think my edging, though will be minus lace and only involve a change of color for the last few rows unless something just as easy magically appears. And it will be garter stitch. I’m not a martyr. Oh, and that commenter that said a California King is just as wide as a Regular King? Then why the heck does our Regular King platform bed have about 8 uncovered inches along the side when we accidentally ordered a California?? But mostly I thank you for the picking up part!! Gratefully, Chloe

  83. Stephanie, thank you so much for taking the trouble to explain in so much detail how your masterpieces are done. I want to knit one myself and have spent years gathering information from your pictures and blog posts, but I was still unclear about some things like basic shape and such. And now you write this post and everything becomes clear. You have such a generous soul! thanks again, and best of luck with your little grandchild and this beautiful blanket!

  84. That’s a lot of rows to make. I hope you can do it. I haven’t tried knitting myself but looking from the numbers it’s gotta be a tiresome one. Good Luck.

  85. As I read these instructions…..for the 10th time now (I did keep count), I think I understand. The “math monster” no longer scares me. If I take it step by step, I may just give this a try. I really want to make a blanket of my own in this manner…out of my own handspun.

    There is so much to learn by doing this project. Fear! Be gone! Onward. Learn more. Do more.

  86. Picking up 4 rows out of five is the traditional pick up for stockinette lace. So, it’s good to see that you did a swatch and did the math and validated the traditional answer.
    Beautiful blankie.
    Julie in San Diego

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