I have become remiss about thanking you for wonderful comments...
Carla, for the reference to Knit Circus of which I had never heard. And Amy Detjen is on board – that must be a plus. I've got to have some of those stripey socks, even though they're already pretty expensive before you factor in Man's Time. (Carla's was a private message, not a comment.)
Lesizmo, for the wonderful description yesterday of the roasting of hatch chillis. Until I got involved with that yarn, I didn't know there was such a thing. Such a chilli, I mean. Let alone that they got roasted.
Shandy, for the pointer to Monique Boonstra and her “Shetland Stars” lace pattern. That's very exciting.
And everybody, for kind new year's wishes.
I am at least mildly inflamed with the desire to knit more Shetland lace. And you're quite right, Mary Lou, that planning is the most fun part.
I have been looking at books and trying to grasp a System, without much luck. I have decided to behave like Procrustes. I will knit an edging and pick up stitches from it to knit my borders. There may be some slight fudging necessary to make the chosen border pattern come out even with the repeats of the edging, but there won't be a radical change in stitch number (as sometimes happens in Sharon Miller's patterns, and I'm sure she knows both what she's doing and how it ought to be done.)
I will knit the borders inwards, decreasing at the corners to form mitres and keeping it all in garter stitch either by wrapping and turning or by Fleegle's system, certainly not by purling alternate rounds.
The number of stitches in the final row of the border will be the number of stitches for the centre pattern – again, slight fudging allowed. That pattern will have to be square-- that is, it will have twice as many rows as it has stitches. It will be knit back and forth, starting from one of the borders and taking in one stitch every row from one side or the other of the two adjacent borders. None of this fancy stuff about three-for-two to turn a rectangle into a square.
Then, at the end, the final row of the centre will be grafted to the final row of the fourth border.
That's how it will be done. Now all I need are patterns which can be forced into my scheme.
I had another good day with the Dunfallandy blankie – I'm pretty sure that 5 12” is going to be right for the st st part of the border, not 7 1/2” as in the text. And I had another good day with the tax. There is nothing much left to do except Gift Aid. I may even get it filed while January is still in single figures.
Here is the promised picture of Christmas dinner on Mt Pelion – Helen says it was almost too hot to sit out:
And of a swim at Thermopylae on the way back to Athens: