The Yarnologue

Madelena, YO!

Have you started your project for the Simonetta Holiday Glitter KAL?

I cast on for my Madelena scarf on Saturday and have been happily knitting along.

Madelena scarf

I've worked 3 repeats so far!

According to the Craft Yarn Council of American standards this pattern would be considered “intermediate” because it has lace. However, I don’t think that should intimidate you. Every project should advance your skills. After three times through the pattern repeat I can assure you the rows repeat regularly enough that they will quickly become familiar (which is not to imply that I’ve memorized the pattern yet!).

The frill is so fun to work! When I read the pattern I said, “Huh?” but as soon as I started knitting I realized I was working short rows. I don’t know why I didn’t realize that until I was holding needles in my hands. It was probably late at night. haha! Each frill works up quickly and is immediately noticeable so they really make you feel like you are making progress.

The body of the scarf is a fairly easy lace pattern. As long as you stay alert you won’t have any problems. However, you might want to give some thought to how you make your yarn overs.

An Eye on Eyelets

As you know, lace is (basically) formed by positioning decreases and yarn overs to form a pattern.

A yarn over (YO) between two knit stitches is made by bringing the yarn to the front as if to purl, then taking it to the back again over (not between) the needles to form the eyelet. Between two purl stitches you’d do the opposite.

Yes, you know all that.

But what about between a purl and a knit stitch? This situation comes up on five rows in the pattern repeat.

Your instinct will be to lay the yarn over the needle when you move it back to knit, rather than taking it between the needles as usual. And that is an option. It will make a YO and you can keep knitting.

However, you might notice that a YO created that way is a little smaller than a normal YO made between two knit stitches. That is because the yarn isn’t traveling as far so you don’t have as much slack to form the eyelet.

Because of this I have elected to make a “Backward YO” instead. This method creates a larger eyelet more in keeping with the others.

To work this YO you would finish your purl stitch, move the yarn to the back between the needles as if to knit, bring the yarn back to the front over the needle (creating your eyelet), then move the yarn to the back between the needles again. Knit (or work as directed) your next stitch as normal.

Basically, you are wrapping the working yarn entirely around the needle. It’s a very quick gesture when you execute it while knitting.

Backward YO

The Backward YO presents twisted.

Now, one caution: a YO made in this fashion will present twisted on the next row. You’ll have to work it through the back leg to untwist it and keep the eyelet open.

In the picture this twisted YO is marked the the red arrow. See how it looks different from all the other stitches?

The green arrow is pointing to a normal YO that was worked between two knit stitches.

You can test the different types of yarn overs out with some practice yarn to see which method you prefer before starting your own Madelena.

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