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19 february, 2007

Today's swatch is the correct version of the "Mystery Blanket" square from Elizabeth Zimmermann's blog-like book, Knitter's AlmanacYesterday, I misread the instructions and -- to use EZ's parle -- "unvented" a new variation.

Both versions start with 8 stitches -- 2 on each of 4 needles -- and increase 8 stitches every other round until there are 24 stitches on each needle, 96 stitches total.  The difference in our versions is in how the increases were worked: 

EZ marked the first stitch on each needle as the increase stitch and then worked a YO on either side of that marked stitch, causing the stitch surrounded by the YOs to stay constant -- hence the straight, diagonal line.

While I, always worked a YO on either side of the first stitch on each needle, causing the stitch surrounded by the YOs to move 1 stitch to the right each increase round -- hence the spiral.

It's up to you, opinionated reader, to decide which variation you would use for your own Mystery Blanket.  Or would you unvent your own?!   

Yarn: Malabrigo in cognac; kettle dyed merino wool.
Needles: US 7, double points
Source: Knitter's Almanac page 43

February 19, 2007 | Permalink


Thanks for the swatch details -- I'm loving the swirly spirals!

Posted by: kimbelina | Feb 19, 2007 6:06:16 PM

I really like how just a tiny difference in the pattern creates such a big difference in the dynamism of the two swatches! I think that a blanket combining both kind of squares would be very interesting. And while you're into pillows, I could see one matching the blanket: one big square using EZ's version on one side, and your variation on the other.

Posted by: Josiane | Feb 19, 2007 7:13:02 PM

I liked your own better.
This swatch a day is crazy. It's like something I'd do: 100 miles by April first. Stash diet till London, read only British novels.
Funny perameters we make for our journey through the seasons.

Posted by: Angie | Feb 19, 2007 7:28:35 PM

I always thought it was funny that she wanted to "stump" her knitting friends by giving herself WAY more work in the grafting than any regular blanket.

Posted by: Angie | Feb 19, 2007 7:30:40 PM

I would have misinterpreted her instructions the same way that you did. I had to read through this twice to understand how your "unvention" gave a different result. I like your spiral version better on its own, but I'd have to think about how they'd look in context of the blanket. It would be fun to sketch out how you could combine yours, hers, and maybe some spirals that curve in the other direction -- see what sort of secondary patterns they create together.

Posted by: Laura | Feb 19, 2007 10:57:41 PM

I love both versions, but I actually think your unvented version is prettier! If I were making a blanket with a bunch of those squares I would use the swirly ones!
As usual, your swatches are an inspiration, and a joy to behold! :D

Posted by: Arianne | Feb 20, 2007 1:45:53 AM

Love the swirls as a one-off, but am curious how a group of the swirly squares would look together. Gotta love EZ.

Posted by: Margaret | Feb 20, 2007 11:03:57 AM

I prefer yours...you are truly an inspiration!

Posted by: karen | Feb 20, 2007 11:49:58 AM

I'm with Laura. On its own the spiral is prettier, but I think that in the context of the blanket, the strong diagonals are part of what makes the blanket work.

If you did the increase and YO's at the other end of the needle, would the spiral spin the other way?

Posted by: kristi | Feb 21, 2007 7:00:22 AM

Love the spiral. Just finished a 'straight' yarmulke and this might be a really nice design for a spiraled one. In my pattern it would be all about the the decreases instead of increases. Curious to see how it might look on a head!

Posted by: jeanee | Feb 22, 2007 10:07:07 AM

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