Last week I showed you the uncommon decrease I'd decided on for the forthcoming Leaf Collector's Mitts pattern - which is ready apart from a few minor changes suggested by a lovely editor, that I haven't time to make. In my post (which you can read here if you missed it) I talked about the frustration caused by left- and right-leaning decreases not matching when they really should.
This whole issue is still driving me bonkers this week - I have almost finished another pattern, but for the final section, an inversion of the first section - which has revealed the same issue again! Except this time it's a single decrease and not a double, and one is knitted top-down and the other bottom-up... so the same solution doesn't work.
The bottom-up version is lovely - great stitch definition and looks exactly how I wanted it to. The top-down version.... not so much. It's making my brain ache, as this project has a definite unmovable deadline - Sunday - and my 'perfect' planning was completely knocked out by the week I'm now referring to as 'mosquito-gate' and which had been my intended contingency time.
So while I'm thinking about this, I'm sharing the resources I'm using to try to make sense of it. Surely some you have faced these problems too (if so, what did you do?) or will do in the future, and you'll remember this post to come back for the links. If nothing else, it'll make me feel as though I'm making progress.
June Hemmons Hyatt talks about the issue in The Principles of Knitting:
While it is common to use mirror-image pairs of decreases to shape the two sides of a garment, this can be problematic because the facing stitch of a Left Decrease tends to be larger than that of a Right Decrease. This is odd, since the structure of the two is the same..... Why it does this remains a mystery.
The wonderful TechKnitter offers some advice. In fact lots of advice, in a series of posts starting here (with the background), continuing here, and offering some solutions here (with SYTK - slip, yank, twist, knit) and here (including a crochet hook).
So now I'm trying to decide whether JHH's twisted decreases or the SYTK option would be best for the pattern and the intended audience..... Did I mention that my brain hurts?!?
If you're wondering why the photo is in black and white, it's because there is some colourful awesomeness in it which I'll be showing you soon! Maybe you can guess what it is.