Saturday, November 24, 2007

Knitting Mathematics

Avert your eyes! Another knitting post and mathematics lesson rolled into one!

Let's say you've started a knitting project for an afghan.
And, let's say that afghan has become the Never-Ending Afghan of Doom! *scream*

Here's a quick and easy way to finish before you know it (or at least get a heckuvalot closer to finishing it than you thought you ever would)!

First, imagine the pattern calls for seven (7) balls of yarn, six (6) of the main color and one (1) of the contrasting color.

You receive the yarn in the mail and discover that (a) you hate contrasting color and (b) you hate even more how the contrasting color looks with the main color.

So, you decide to only use the main color.
And, voila!, you are *already* 1/7th (or 14%) done!
Without even having to cast-on!

Then, you knit and knit and knit and knit and knit and knit ... until your brain starts bleeding, because garter stitch on really big needles is really boring. And this yarn isn't the most co-operative.

"BUT, it's soooooo soft," a little voice in your head says.

You give that little voice a beat-down, because, if you don't, that little voice will talk you into buying seven more balls because you know someone who would just lurve a supersoft afghan.

ANYWAY, several decades later, you finish the 4th ball of the main (er ... only) color. And you are 2/3 (66.7%) finished! Unless you count the contrasting color you didn't use, and -then- even better- you are 5/7th (72%) complete!

OMG! Homestretch! 2 balls to go.

That will only take, like, a millenium. The joy turns into depression. So you hold up the 72% completed afghan and think, "Y'know, this looks pretty big. I could bind it off now."

Then, the little voice in your head says, "but what are you going to do with those other three balls of this supersoft yarn?"

So, you compromise with that little voice, agreeing to use one more ball for the afghan and make a scarf or two out of the remaining yarn.

And, suddenly, the Never-Ending Afghan of Doom is 6/7th (86%) complete and two of your friends will be getting scarves again for Christmas.

Yay for mathematics!

Never-Ending Afghan of Doom


  1. Small voices know best. Except the ones I know are still having trouble regrouping with the tens column.

  2. Pretty colors. It looks like huckleberry fields in September.