Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Do and re-do

Last week I started making an afghan for my niece. She just turned ten and when she was born I didn’t crochet. Her younger sister has gotten a baby blanket, a toddler blanket, and a few snugglers from us but H has never gotten anything. So I recently asked my sister if she would like one and she was very excited. As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, I am making the blanket in filet crochet and decided to make it all in one piece rather than the three panels of 5 squares to be stitched together later. So I sat down with pencil and paper and began figuring how long a chain I needed to make to start the blanket. Each filet crochet section is 90 stitches which is 29 squares. Squares have either 2 chain and a double crochet at each end or 2 double crochet and a double crochet at each end. In other words, to do a section of double crochet, you do (3*n)+1 double crochet where n = the number of squares on the pattern.

So first I multiplied the sections by 3:
90 * 3 = 270 stitches
29 * 3 = 87 squares

Now the pattern itself has a “padding” border of squares. So I figured I need an extra padding border between the three sections:
2 * 3 = 6 stitches
2 * 1 = 2 squares

Then R said that that will mean that when a person looks at the blanket in whole, s/he will see three rows of squares. The person won’t think about the fact that one two of those rows are actually the padding border. So on the outside of the blanket, there needs to be 3 padding rows (1 of which is part of the pattern). Ok.
2 sides * 6 stitches = 12 stitches
2 sides * 2 squares = 4 squares

And since just inside the padding border of squares is a solid border of solid double crochet, I want to put a solid border of double crochet around the entire blanket.
2 * 3 = 6 stitches
2 * 1 = 2 squares

Bringing the count to 294 stitches/95 squares (yes, I know that's a fragment and I'm ok with it). And then you add one extra chain/double crochet because of the (3*n)+1 formula. So ok, 295 double crochet. Well to make a long story short (too late), I chained about 299, double crochet 295, then turned and did the squares back: 94 squares. Yep, let’s look at that again. 94 squares. Hmmm. 94 squares. So I asked R to count. 94 squares. Now if I wanted to drop off one of the 2 padding columns on the outside I would only need 93 squares but I’d still have to undo the squares row and then drop off three double crochet. And I had extra chains because it’s always easier to take them out than to put them in but I took them out after I counted and recounted my 295 double crochet.

What does all that mean? It means taking out the squares and taking out the existing double crochet. Then adding 3 chains, then re-crocheting the double crochet ( this time 298), then the squares again.

And if you’re following my math and something doesn’t add up, yes. It might not because I’m not sitting in front of either the afghan or the piece of paper on which we’re figuring the whole thing. It makes me think of that story you tell kids about the three guys with the $10 and it only adds to $29 when you’re done.

And it’s a good darned thing I love crochet or I’d be screaming.

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