There are times when the knitting gods are with me. When I'm inventing on the fly and it's like it was always meant to be. When I drift blissfully from one finishing high to another. (Actually this just recently happened to me and I have a bunch of stuff I'm excited about to photograph and show you.) But today ... was not that day.
Since Saturday, I've been working full blast on a new project, a top-down child's sweater with a round colorwork yoke. I've been doing this slightly complicated thing where I combine a picture of the colorwork I want (no actual pattern, but it's fairly straightforward and I can mostly count stitches to figure out what to do) and a computer-generated pattern. I entered my stitch gauge (stitches per inch) and row gauge (rows per inch) and the dimensions of the sweater I wanted to end up with, and the computer spat back a pattern.
Which I've been knitting, which has given me ... this.
Which bears no resemblance to how human beings are shaped. People (ideally) have these things called shoulders. Which is a good thing, I suppose. But less good for my very strange, shoulderless sweater. Short of a sleeve for a sumo wrestler, this sweater is pretty useless.
How did this happen?
First of all, I think I'm going to be much more wary of computer generated patterns in the future. Having a human being at the design controls is maybe a good idea.
Second, I think I completely bombed measuring my gauge. I rushed over this part because I wanted to print out my pattern, and this was a terrible decision. PSA: you get a much more accurate gauge if you cast on enough stitches to make a 4" or 5" square, measure 4", then divide by 4 to get your gauge. Don't round up! Decimals and accuracy are your friends!
Third, I really (really really) should have figured out this sooner. I now have a heartbreaking 6" of of colorwork to unravel. My only explanation is that I was using the Magic Loop method, which allows you to knit with a longer circular than really fits your number of stitches, and it's not a method I love and it causes you to focus on a smaller section at a time. Lots of not seeing the forest for the trees.
Sigh. I guess I'll know better next time.
It's been an educational evening.