I can't remember when I have swatched and fiddled and measured and mathed as much as for my FLAK. Which is saying something, since this kind of thing is not just my compulsion, it's my JOB. I have made no less than 7 swatches, and at least triple that, if you count how much tearing out and reknitting those required. That said, I think the result is starting to look exciting. Here you can see the first full repeat (24 rows) of my back pattern. I ended up with practically no filler stitches at the sides, but I'm okay with that - I never like to devote too much real estate to side panels.
This photo shows my newly rediscovered favorite stitch. I don't know its name, because I have only ever seen it in Japanese patterns, so I'll call it the Open Baby Cable. It's so delicious because it has left and right-leaning iterations, looks adorable right side up, or upside down (shown here), and requires no cable needle to execute. The Open Baby Cable is worked over three sts, on every 4th row. In my sweater, I've placed a purl st on either side of each OBC to set them apart from their neighbors. Wanna try it? Here's how:
Pass the third st on the Left needle over the first 2. Then k1, YO, k1. That's it! How sexy is that? And you can make all your OBC's lean right for a really beautiful, cohesive effect. Unless you are a spaz like me, with a pathological need to mirror everything that can be mirrored, in which case you will immediately have to try this:
Slip three sts from the Left needle over to the Right needle, purlwise. Now pass the third st on the Right needle over the first 2. Slip those 2 sts back over to the Left needle, then k1, YO, k1. TA-DAAA! Sexy Party Trick complete.
Have fun playing with these (wouldn't they be cute on socks?), but don't say I didn't warn you: they're kind of addictive. I'd hate to see you go off on a bender and surface on Monday with an Open Baby Cable hangover. Let's keep things under control, people.
I'm off to the Astoria Stitchfest tommorrow - see you there!