Hi everyone! I thought I would take a few minutes to answer some of the most frequently asked questions about the Larch pattern. Most of these are compiled directly from the Ravelry Thread that we have going. Hopefully this will answer any of your pressing questions! Here goes:
Q1. I've never followed a chart before. How do I read the chart?
A1. Charts are generally read starting from the right on row 1 and all odd rows and from the left on row 2 and all even rows. Usually the chart is read from the bottom to the top. The middle section of the chart that is highlighted is the 12-stitch repeat. I find it helpful to place a stitch marker every 12 stitches so that I know exactly where I'm at in the pattern at all times.
Q2. Does this chart have a key? I can't find it.
A2. This particular chart does not include a key on the printable pattern but the key is available on the "Larch" Ravelry page.
Q3. How do I work the YO's on the edges and center?
A3. These are built into the chart and worked in the same way as the garter stitch section. Your center and edge YO's continue throughout the entire pattern.
Q4. The pattern says it takes 450 yards but one skein of Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock is only 435 yards. How do I make the pattern work with the yardage?
A4. The pattern describes how to make this pattern work for any yardage. This particular lace pattern has a 4 row repeat. You can bind off after any 4 row repeat in the chart. I think you will probably work one full chart plus another half of a chart or maybe a little more. I am 1.5 chart sections in at the moment and could go at least one more repeat. It's knitter's choice though.
Q5. Once I start the lace chart, what do I do when I get to the middle stitch?
A5. Although the answer to this is not specifically outlined in the pattern, after consulting with several other expert knitters, we concluded that the pattern should be mirrored and thus worked backwards to the end of the row. This way, the pattern is a mirror of itself on either side.
Q6. Can I knit this pattern in a different weight of yarn?
A6. Absolutely! Just adjust your needle size to work for your yarn choice and expect the finished size change as well. This is a great idea if you want a larger shawl instead of a shawlette.
Q7. Can I make the "Larch" bigger?
A7. Absolutely! You can add additional stitches to the garter stitch section, just be sure to add them in increments of 12 on both sides. If you follow the pattern to 96 stitches (on either side of the center stitch), then you would knit to 108, 120, or 132 sts, etc. You can do extra chart repeats to make your shawl larger as well. Customization is entirely up to you! Knitter's choice!
There are some helpful tips about working the lace section in the pattern notes. It helps to read through these thoroughly before beginning the lace section so that you have a clear picture of how it's knit. Feel free to ask any more question--especially if we didn't cover it here already!
Please let us know if you have any helpful hints to share or if you have any feedback, we'd love to hear it!
Happy weekend and happy knitting!