Friday, January 23, 2009

4. Torchon Insertion

This week's pattern is "Torchon Insertion," a garter stitch panel of 17 stitches with a 10-row repeat. The number of eyelets on either side of the central stitch decreases with each row and then increases again to form a horizontally stretched diamond in the center. Each row of stitches is pulled into an arch which becomes less and less pronounced the further it is from the cast-on edge.

You can download the full-size chart, verbal instructions and notes here.

Tweaking the Pattern
The absence of balanced decreases is notable. Left-leaning decreases (SSK, sl1 k1 psso, K2tog tbl, et al.) are rare in 19th Century patterns, even in a symmetrical design like this one where they could be expected. A modern designer would likely use opposing decreases on each side as the center diamond grows and then reverse the order as the diamond tapers, like this

where \ is a left-leaning decrease. On the rare occasions where a left-leaning decrease is found in the patterns in this sample book, sl1 k1 psso is always the version used.

Next week: Knitted Trimming


Anonymous said...

Auckland Aniversary weekend here,so we have an extra day off this weekend. MUST start doing these.

That looks great.This will be difficult to believe but my grandmother used to have knitted edges on her pantry shelves. (this was in Friesland a northern province in the Netherlands) I think that's why I love them so much. Memories are very powerfull thriggers aren't they.

vintagekathleen said...

That is so cool! Your mention of shelf edgings triggered something in my memory, too. I started leafing through my Furze Hewitt books and, sure enough, in Knit One, Make One in Classic Knitted Cotton there is a section titled "Shelf Edgings" and a photo of a hanging shelf unit sporting three different designs. The practice may have been more widespread than we realized.