Elegance (or The Tale of a Tail)

tails

My first pattern of 2013 is for a Whale, a chubby, cartoonish Whale, with an overbite and a big tail. He is not a graceful creature and yet a search for elegance has delayed the production of this pattern by at least a week.

I try to make Natty Knits designs as elegant as possible and for me this means only a few sewn seams and a flow in the continuity of the knitting. I  also try to avoid unnecessarily complex stitches and this is where I’ve been struggling. The pattern for this Whale’s tail contains one instance of a 3 needle bind off in purl, purled together with a wrap and turn loop at the same time. It’s just one difficult stitch in an otherwise straightforward pattern, but it seems so inelegant. I spent a long time trying to rectify this and knitted many, many tails, some of which are in the photo above.

None of my alternatives worked as well as the one with the complicated stitch.

And so, when this pattern goes out to the amazing testers of Ravelry tomorrow, I will await their response with baited breath. I know they can make the stitch, many of them are better knitters than I am. The question is, can I explain the stitch?

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