Almost finished, almost… aw, #$%@#

First of all, I always forget the vast land that is the hood. Once I’m finished the fronts and back and sleeves, I think “in the home stretch now!”. But hoods, hoods are big. Especially the way I like them. So the past week and a bit has been a bit of frustration at how long this is taking!

Yesterday saw the light at the end of the tunnel. Last inch. Just have to get one more repeat of the cable pattern, making sure I end on row 6…

Done! Now to graft the top seam, cable to cable…

#$%#@@##%$%$^$%$@#@%$#%$. The left cable is not at row 6. The right cable and left cable have been at different rows for a long time now, a fact that should have been abunduntly clear to me at least once I started the hood (all in one piece – I even noticed that I was doing the same action for both sides. This means that the tops of the cables are identical, and therefore, when you flip them end to end do not line up because the cable isn’t symmetrical). If I had been thinking, I would have checked with the beginning of the second sleeve, because something in the back of my head was saying that the way the cable on the edge was going compared with the cable on the sleeve was different this time around…

Upshot: THE NUMBER OF ROWS BEFORE THE START OF THE SLEEVES ON THE FRONTS IS VERY, VERY IMPORTANT. It’s not important what number that is (as long as it matches the back), but it’s incredibly important that the left and the right are the same. I don’t know whether this fact was pointed out in the pattern (I have a bad habit of skimming), but do NOT go just by measurements. Especially in a drapey yarn.

So I was lying in bed with a quandry. How do I fix this? The proper way would be to undo the hood and one side down to the armpit and do it properly. I immediately threw this idea out as taking way too long – due to the drape, the extra four rows on the right side won’t be noticed (hence why I didn’t notice them when I was measuring the fronts in the first place). Not worth the effort. I could undo part of the hood, and try to put in a couple of short rows on the left side and see if the drape would hide them, and thus end up with the same number of cable rows on each side. I could try to end the cables, then put in a few rows of reverse stockinette to graft together at the peak (turned out to be tough because of the asymmetric nature of the cable – one braid section stands by itself and would have to be just stopped, versus the twist and end that can happen when they overlap). I could try and see if at some point the cables as they are could be merged, or plot out a new braid pattern to force them to merge.

Turns out, it wasn’t all that tough. One more row on each to get the twist, then repositioning the stitches on one side for the next row and grafting the stitches together. Seems they melded perfectly fine two more rows down. But what’s life, without a little panic?!

Next up: pre- and post-blocking pics. I’m thinking of trying just a heavy steam block to begin with, cotton takes forever to dry from full immersion. I’ve also taken pictures of the cable grafting for a possible tutorial, but I’m not sure how well the black is visible for instruction purposes.

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