I finished my Red Emperor scarf yesterday, and well... it was a disappointment. Not that pattern, certainly not. It was a wonderful pattern, with some beautiful motifs in it. It was just that I really didn't think it through very well, and ended up with a really short scarf.
That centre section ought to be twice as long. As it is, it's a lot shorter than what I'd hoped for.
The main reason is that I just didn't have enough yarn to achieve the length I wanted. The pattern calls for 500 yards, and I only had 400. It really shouldn't have been such a shock, but I was just... hoping...
So today, I took it off my blocking board and mulled it over. I wrapped it around my head. I laid it across my shoulders. I sighed. Then, I went swimming.
I think about a lot of things while I'm swimming, knitting not the least of those things, and managed to think my way through a whole other project I've been planning before I hit upon an idea: I needed some buttons.
Luckily, buttons are not in short supply in my house.
When I got home, I ate some lunch, and then dug out a bag of buttons I'd purchased from Buttonsgalore, my go-to online shop for when I need pretty buttons. I found a bag of pewter-coloured buttons, threaded a couple together on some stretchy cord with a couple of seed beads in between, and voila: a double-sided button.
These buttons are small enough to fit through some of the open lace, yet big enough to be tastefully noticeable. The seed beads give enough space to fit a couple of layers of the scarf between the two buttons. You simply push one button through two layers of knitting, and they are attached. And, not only that, you can move the buttons around to where you need them. My mom lent (ahem, and I have not yet returned) a similar set of buttons to me a couple of years ago.
This afternoon, I experimented with some ways to wear this thing. Some of the ways worked well.
Some, not so much.
I do know that I still love this pattern, and I'm learning to love this scarf, even if it wasn't what I'd dreamed of.
I have learned my lesson, though. If I want to have a long, stole-like scarf, I can either:
a) use at least 500 yards of fingering weight yarn, or
b) cast on fewer stitches and make a narrower scarf - between 35 and 60 stitches, depending on the gauge and the motif.
And no, so far, no projects of mine have ever ended up in the trash. That would be a travesty of epic proportions. There is always a way...
There's a saying that goes something like that...