WIP Wednesday: Eyelet Lace Skirt for KNITMuch!

 Alright, once again, welcome back to WIP Wednesday!  Patrons who hung out with me in the Virtual Knit Night will know that I've got a new WIP on the go - this is the Eyelet Skirt from Universal Yarns, and I'm knitting it up as part of a sponsored blog post with the wonderful folks over at KNITmuch!

The chronicle of knitting this skirt will also be up on the KNITmuch blog in the summer, so you can check it out there, too when it goes live!

First, the pattern.  While the pattern is absolutely gorgeous, the instructions. . . . well, they leave something to be desired.  First, the designer has you knitting the skirt in panels and seaming it together and I, for the life of me, can't figure out -why-.  There's no structural reason as to why you would do that that I can figure out.  Maybe it has something to do with the waistband?  That's my only guess - and it is a guess!  So, first step for me was converting it into the round, because, uh, no, I'm not sewing that if I don't have to!  

(If someone who is more knowledgeable then me knows a reason why you might knit a skirt in panels then sew it, I'd love to hear, I'm really curious to know if there is a functional reason behind this style of construction!  It makes sense for sewing a skirt from woven fabric, but I can't see the reasoning for hand-knitting!)

Also, this pattern does, in fact, have the dreaded 'at the same time' pattern instructions.  It's not totally terrible, I just keep note of which rounds are decrease rounds; and I see why the pattern is worked that way - to work out all the decreases for all the sizes would make the pattern very, very verbose.  It's just something that you need to keep count of, I use the BeeCount App to do just that.  

 lace knitting in progress on a pair of wooden circular needlesBut easily the most complicated part of the pattern is keeping the lace in pattern at the edges of each panel.  The pattern will tell you to start at specific stitches of the various lace patterns. .  . but then the increase rows disrupt that; so then you are one stitch earlier or later then the pattern says.  Plus, the instructions are that if you don't have enough stitches for both the decrease and yarn-over, then knit them in stocking stitch. . . . so you have to figure out where, exactly your stitches are going to fall at the start of each panel section.  It's a lot to keep track of, and yes, I've had to frog a few times, but the finished skirt should absolutely make up for the effort, I hope!  And, once you figure that out, the lace itself isn't super complicated, plus, the rounds are quite long, and every even round is plain stocking stitch, so, barring the occasional pause to make sure things are right; it's actually great podcast knitting.

Anyway, onto the yarn.  The yarn is FibraNatura's Flax in "Adriatic" (thanks to KNITMuch for the yarn support!) and I absolutely adore this colourway.  No, I didn't just pick it because it's the same colour as the sample, those who've been around here long enough know that I'm an absolute sucker for things in the jewel tone colours - teals, blues, and purples!  Thanks to it being so grey today, the colour is a bit off - it's actually a bit more blue then grey, but the camera refuses to get it quite right.   The flax is, admittedly very rough on the hands to work with, but, for better or worse, it actually absorbs the sweat and such from my hands and gets a bit softer if my hands are sweaty, which has been interesting!  Flax usually softens up immensely once it goes through the washer and dryer, and I'm betting that's what will happen here, too.   Right now, the skirt looks crunched up and terrible - but lace really is a testament to the powers of blocking, and this skirt will definitely need to be blocked once I'm done!

The needles are a completely new needle brand for me, they're Clover Bamboo Needles (again, thanks to KNITMuch for sending me the needles to try out, too!) and I really, really like them!  They're lightweight and very smooth, I'd absolutely buy myself some more of their fixed circulars.  I do wonder how they'd work with a more slippery yarn like bamboo rayon or silk?  But working the Flax on them has been great, I've had no issues with slipping stitches  . . . . except for an incident involving one very helpful feline knitting helper. . . . . but that's not anything to do with the needles! 

Stitch Markers are the Unique Stitch Markers (also thanks to KNITMuch - they really sent all the goodies for me to work this up for their blog, it's awesome!)  I'm learning I'm less fond of the split-ring markers when they go on the needle.  I think if I had them hooked into the fabric it would be different, but when I've got them on the needle, I find that occasionally they tend to snag the stitch next to them, or, they catch the working yarn when I've put the project away in its bag.  So I do definitely prefer either straight ring markers or lobster claw markers, I think.  Not that these are bad, but just not my preference for being right on the needles. 

This is my big project for the start of 2024, and it's going to take a bit to finish - I'm planning for it to be done by late June/early July so it can be a proper summer skirt, which I think will be a wonderful addition to my wardrobe.  

Have you cast on any big projects for 2024?  Share them in the comments or on the discord!