This entry is quite different to all my past ones. You might remember this
entry, where I wrote about the Noa Noa scarf and it's impossibility to find, and my dissatisfaction with all alts I had found. Not long after writing, I decided to learn how to knit with the sole intention of making this scarf.
It sounds crazy, but perhaps there was some deeper calling at work here. My mother gave me a whole set of old knitting needles, which turned out to by my paternal grandmother's. She died when I was quite small, and all my own memories of her are quite sad - she was sick and remote. I never knew her. Through knitting I discovered she was a very prolific, very fine, knitter. Apparently she was tremendously good and knitted beautiful and difficult garments at great speed. I loved that I was learning to knit on her own needles, which had been sitting aside (waiting for me?) for twenty-five years.
My mother showed me a few things but knitting isn't really her forte, and we live an hour apart so I couldn't readily consult with her. I turned instead to my work colleague - one of my best friends, and who feels like family to me - and she taught me many things. She's a terrific knitter, and enormously patient. She helped me fix many a mistake on this project and taught me the most important thing to learn when you are knitting - how to hold the yarn.
I started off with little projects. I learned some different stitches and played around for awhile before I decided to start the scarf. I began mid February.Sew Krafty
has a really good Night Terrors scarf pattern. I adapted a few different things from her pattern. The first is the yarn used. I regard this scarf as my prototype - I wasn't going to spend a lot of money on really nice wool when I wasn't sure if I would stick with the project. There was no way I'd keep going if I wasn't enjoying it but fortunately, I discovered that I love knitting! So for this one, I used good-quality acrylic instead of wool blends. I also changed the colours. I cannot be sure if the SA scarf is black and blue, or blue and blue, but I've always felt it was the latter. So rather than using black I changed it up to navy. I also changed the pattern slightly because I hate jogging (the effect when you change colours and you get a thin line of stitches of the previous colour overlapping). I wanted clean colour blocks, so I added a knit row as the first row of each colour change. I also chose to make my scarf slightly smaller in width and cast on 76 stitches.
I made every mistake you can possibly make. My most common mistake was adding a stitch (I never dropped, curiously, always added) which I did by knitting or purling when I should've done the other but holding the wool in the wrong position, which made this revolting mutant stitch that you didn't notice until you were knitting the row above. I learned to constantly check my work after each row, and, if I felt I hadn't concentrated hard enough, counting the stitches to make sure there were always 76 at the end. The best error I made is this one:
I mean ... how'd I even do that? The lady who taught me reckons she knows but I still don't get how I possibly could've done it. I had to take the damn thing off the needle and rip it back a really long way to fix it. Slipping it back on the needle after was extremely tense. I had to do this two or three times.
And now, it's finished. I can scarcely believe that I did this. The sense of accomplishment is huge. When I look at my scarf I can see each knit and purl laboriously learned, each rib fashioned, and the odd little mistake peppered here and there (five, to be exact.) And now I have a new hobby - I'm starting a Slytherin scarf for my friend, then a Ravenclaw scarf for another, then a Star Trek Captain's uniform-themed scarf for my brother .... and I'm just loving it. When I'm a little more skilled I plan to make Amy's red lace scarf from Season 5. And, of course, remake this one with really nice wool. But I think that can probably wait a year.
One more thing ... this scarf is huge! It's 87 inches. It got a little longer than I would've liked, but I don't mind.
If you'd like to see pics of the scarf in action - and my other Amy cosplays - add me on Instagram: universalpond .