The shortest distance between two points? A squiggly line.

I have a garment design due in a couple of weeks, and I have been faffing about for months trying to figure out what to do with it. I can’t say much about the design, but I can give some of the parameters I am operating under:

  • It’s for a holiday gift collection.
  • It’s a men’s garment.
  • It uses two different colors of MadelineTosh Merino Light (aka luscious, semisolid threads of yumminess).

OK. My first thought was color work — some kind of herringbone pattern, perhaps — but after messing about with a bazillion different color patterns, I realized that the thin yarn and the handdyed color were blurring the lines between the two colors, such that any pattern was getting lost. Blast.

What to do when the going gets tough? Hide. That’s right: when every attempt at colorwork had failed miserably, I stuffed the skeins in a drawer and worked on other projects for a while.

Then it occurred to me that maybe, just maybe I should check when this design is due.

Answer? Two weeks from now. Blast.

In desperation, I started playing around with an unconventional stripe pattern, convinced it would look bland or garish. It did not. The bold geometry of a stripe is just what’s needed in this case to set off the subtle tones of a hand-dyed yarn. We are off and running.

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