Do As I Say (Not As I Do)

I'll admit it:  I am just crazy for color-changing yarn.  There's such an air of sanctioned cheating about it.  I mean, you don't have to figure out anything at all with regard to color combinations.  It's all done for you.  But I could never be happy just complacently self-striping along.  Oh, no; not "Sassy Mc-Couldn't-we-make-this-harder-ton".  I got it into my head that what my EZPS really needed was some colorwork at the yoke.  Nothin' to it!  I'll Just (how many truly bad ideas begin with the words "I'll Just"?  I'm thinking most of them) stagger the color changes in my second strand to work the pattern, assuring that there will be enough contrast to make the motifs pop.  How'd that work out for me?

Great, actually, as long as I was only doing corrugated rib.  The hem and cuffs, being at the beginnings of things, offered a lot more control than I had in the yoke area, where I was subject to the whims of the color-change trolls:

Nowhere near enough contrast to see the motif (it's a leaf - thanks for asking).  It dawned on me after about five rounds that what I needed was an entirely different colorway of cool self-striping yarn.  But this is the really barking part:  This lesson is not new to me.  As soon as I thought about it, I remembered last Thanksgiving, when I learned this the first time.  Just about a year ago, to the day.  I was making this swell hat with Noro, when I learned that you can't just reverse the order of the striping by working from both ends of the ball because when they cross, you will be working stranded colorwork with two strands of the same color.  Did I try it anyway?  Of course.  Total denial that my tingling Bat Senses might indicate trouble ahead.  And when, at the end of the project, I asked myself "What have you learned, Dorothy?", the answer had two parts: 

1.  Stagger, rather than reverse, the stripe order of the yarns.
2.  Even better, get a totally different colorway for the second strand so you get enough contrast.

So why, I wonder, did only the first part of the lesson stick?  Stupid synapses.  Stupid Knitting Amnesia.  Oh well.  I was only a few rounds in when the epiphany struck (again).  I could easily frog the stranded part and replace one of the strands with a separate colorway.  But (and here's where my control-freak nature rears its ugly head) the hem and cuffs are already worked in the main colorway.  For the design to make sense to me, the second colorway needs to be used at the hem, cuffs, neckline, front bands and yoke.  Otherwise it looks like I just changed my mind midstream.  Which I sort of did, but don't want to be reminded of it every time I see the sweater.

So I'm Hosed.  Notice how I always fall out of love with my projects somewhere near their completion?  Yeah, well, it appears to be that time again.  {I'm not even supposed to be working on this right now.  If you'll remember, I sent the Frog Prince to Time Out for less egregious crimes.  Come to think of it, I don't really remember what Froggy's doing time for, exactly.}  So I have decided to push through the wall and complete the EZPS, which means that every time the yarn colors get too close, I'll break and graft one or both to get better contrast.  So far, in the yoke area I have broken and grafted three times.  Which blows.  So while I had hopes of publishing this design at some point, I like you all too much to do it.  Instead, I'll just give you the following  vague  instructions, open for interpretation: 

Make this sweater using EZPS, and working 6 steek sts at the center front to make it a cardigan.  But don't be a dumbass like me:  Choose TWO colorways and use one for the edge trims and colorwork, and the other for the main body. 

In other words, Do As I Say, Not As I Do. 

And good luck with that.