We're putting a lot of work into getting me better, into reducing the pain and improving my range of movement.
As much as I didn't want to go anywhere near the Amitriptyline again, I'm on twice the dose this time and it's doing it's thing - it's getting me to sleep, and along with all the other pain management methods, the pain is now liveable.
We've bought ourselves a hand-held ultrasound unit, and that's making a difference (yes, we've done our research and we're using it conservatively). I'm having two massages a week, one specifically to focus on all the scar tissue from inflammation around all the muscles (there's a heck of a lot of it) and we're mighty grateful to be good friends with a talented masseur who's friends' rates means I can get two long, deep massages for less than the price of one in London. And of course, if the damp/cold weather kicks in or I've somehow pushed things too far, I've the TENS machine at hand. For the last 10 days or so, I've not needed to use that everyday, so I'm definitely on the right side of this now! And of course I'm doing physio at least 5 times a day (I'm a pro at the pendulum exercises these days).
And all of this means I can knit again! Not constantly, I need regular breaks and days off in between, but I can knit. My tension isn't a mess, either.
And so I'm diving straight into the designs that I've been working on for what feels like forever. There's only so much work on paper I can do before I get bored and move on, so I'm relieved not to have lost enthusiasm for this idea.
I started by making myself a prototype for the construction.
This construction method is something I started working on a good 4 or 5 years ago, when I was planning all of the Turning Heads Hats. I was wanting to use this construction with a stitch pattern that could then be rotated for the brim, so I'd got all the maths done for that (it was just a matter of finishing knitting the thing!)
BTW, the Turning Heads collection is still something I hope to see published, but it's in a kinda weird limbo - that's what happens when you have a breakdown during a project; that project becomes associated with the breakdown, or at least it's very hard to revisit it at a later date. Given that my brain is very much back on track in terms of puzzle solving and pattern maths and construction, the concept behind Turning Heads feels within my grasp again. But that's somewhere in the future.
So here's a look at how the crown shaping works with this construction method. It's a sideways knit Hat without short row shaping.
And this is how it looks from the side. It is still very much a sideways Hat; garter stitch sideways is essentially 1x1 rib, except with loads more possibilities design wise, and better properties stitch wise.
Recalculating the maths of this construction method for garter stitch was easy enough - the gauge properties of garter stitch sit so well with that of sideways knitting - if you've ever taken one of my sideways knitting workshops with me you'll know I wax lyrical about this!
After a false start and a ripping out (it's how I work best!) I'm fully underway with the pattern.
Although there's no short rows involved in the construction, I wanted to throw in some short row colourwork, because I wanted to see how the two play together. It's making for some mind boggling charts and rather fascinating problem solving, as increases/decreases are working at 90 degrees to the short rows, and they don't always play when when they don't intersect at the right points. But I'm thoroughly enjoying myself working it all out!
It's absolutely been worth all the effort, I'm mighty chuffed with how this first design is taking shape!
The collection will be called 'Lateralis'. If you follow me on Instagram you'll know I've spent some time trying to decide between laterale and Lateralis... the Latin does have a medical usage and I do try and use a word that doesn't have alternative meanings, but it is absolutely the best word for the idea behind this collection. Lateralis literally means 'belonging to the side' and is the original of the words and usages of 'Lateral', as well as the origin behind some of the pattern names, too. The Italian sounds good following on from Elemental and Circled, but it doesn't strike me as quite as sophisticated as the Latin, and these patterns (and the photography I have planned for them) are definitely more sophisticated than anything I've done (in my opinion, at least!). So Lateralis it is. I'll get a webpage built for the collection as soon as I have some good photos of the finished Hats to share.
Release date wise, it'll be in autumn. I'm not going to be more specific than that as my shoulders are dictating my pace right now, and I want to be free to indulge myself in the designs so that I produce the best stuff, rather than feel committed to a deadline, which usually results in my not best stuff. Likewise, it'll be 4 or 5 designs, but I'm not committing to that either.
As for the pattern sample shown above, I've used Malabrigo Arroyo. These Hats will be graded by gauge, and I'm writing in 3 sizes that cross sport weight and DK. Chances are I'll be reknitting this one in DK for the photoshoot, as the Arroyo does make a smallish size... I tend to find Arroyo is on the skinnier side of the sport weight scale. I'll publish the gauges vs sizes in the near future, but for now I'd say if you're knitting adult size Hats, DK is what you wanna be stocking up on.
Right, onwards! I've a weekend of chart wrangling ahead. Hope you like the new stuff!