Talking about this has not gotten easier. When I taught my niece how to knit, I tried to mitigate the inevitable frustration. I told her "even experienced knitters make mistakes".
She has since quoted this back to me, in correct context, numerous times. Yes, even Mr. E has reminded me of what I said, always with a grin.
I am still not entirely sure that I believe my own PR.
Way To Brighton is knit in two stages. First, a band with bobbles (actually double bobbles) is knit. Then stitches are picked up across the band. Rows are knit (short rows) across, ending every few rows with another bobble.
Ignorance was NOT bliss for long. The problem can be summarized thus: RTFP.
First, I watched the recommended tutorial for the bobbles. Mastery was not hard, although the bobbles were irregular. They were not identical, but they met the man on a galloping horse test. There were so many of them, I didn't think most observers' eyes would rest on their imperfection. Most Ravelers complained about the same thing. I knit on, picked up stitches, and knit about 15 rows. Then I re-read the pattern, and saw that Joji used a different bobble method. My Youtube-generated method used purl stitches. I feared I had used more yarn than Joji, and that I would run out. So I ripped back to the bobble row, eliminated one bobble, picked up the stitches AGAIN, and knit on.
1. I ignored that the bobble row with band was short.
2. I seemed to have many more problems picking up stitches than anyone else on Rav. There did not seem to be a discernable pattern. I ignored that also.
3. As I knit, after making two or three bobbles, a discrepancy appeared. The bobbles I was making were farther apart than the ones on the starting row. I scratched my head, and knit on.
4. Soon, as the short rows got shorter and shorter, it became apparent that I was not using enough of the remaining yarn.
I decided to read that pattern again.
RTFP is not the same as RTFP. I read the pattern more times than I can count, but clearly did not read it.
To make the bobbles, one repeats rows 4-6 after making the first bobble. Alas, after making the second bobble, I was supposed to repeat rows 1-6. Instead, I repeated rows 4-6. The instant of realization carried with it the undeniable knowledge that the entire shawl, including the bobble row and band, had to be ripped back to.....nothing. And so I did.
The yarn is in its project bag, taking a breather. (Maybe I am the one taking a breather.) I cast on for French Cancan.
I felt perfectly awful about this for weeks. Stupid, even. But I felt much better today when Susan Rainey posted that she had done the same sort of thing on another pattern. She is a knitter with a capital K, and she had done it also. Suddenly, I felt more...normal. (See here, post dated August 5, 2013.)
French Cancan is done, and needs only blocking. I have Tour de Fleece progress, French Cancan pix to come. I cast on for mindless knitting (Natsu). Even casting on turned out not to be as mindless as I had hoped, but I learned a GREAT new cast on.