Tutorial – Planned PoolingJuly 25, 2021
Planned Pooling Tutorial
Tips for starting the Koi Pool Shawl
In this post we’ll be sharing our tips for setting up the Koi Pool shawl pattern pictured above, making sure that you’re able to get the colors to fade on the sides as shown. You can find the pattern on both Ravelry and Love Crafts:
We’ve also put together a video walking through our tips for success with this pattern. You can video the video here:
1. Choosing colors
To successfully knit the pattern with the motif in the center, and the colors blending on the sides, you first need to choose a colorway with long color repeats. You can identify this in the skein when there are blocks of the same color together in the skein. Our transitional colorways are ideal for this. Beyond this, you want to choose a colorway where the opposite sides of the skein are colors which are highly contrasting.
For the Koi Pool shawl specifically, you will also need a skein of a colorway that blends well with one of the end colors. This will allow you to achieve the blending effect on the sides of the shawl. For this project we used our Once Upon a Time colorway as the contrasting color. We’ve put together several color combination suggestions that would work nicely:
2. Determine color for sides vs. center motif
When choosing the colorways, you’ll want to take into consideration which colors you want in the motif, and which color you want the ends to fade to. You’ll need to choose a corresponding colorway which isn’t a transitional colorway that matches the color you want the sides to fade to. In the description for our suggested colorway pairings we’ve listed which color the ends should fade to and which color will be the contrasting color for the motif.
3. Cast on to determine number of stitches needed
You’ll start by doing a simple Backwards Loop cast on to determine the number of stitches you’ll need to make a full color repeat. First pull a length of yarn from your ball, and determine the middle of the color repeat for the color you’d like on the edges. This is where you’ll start your cast on. Continue casting on stitches till you reach the middle of the same color on its next repeat. Then you can begin working in garter stitch to verify that the colors will continue to line up. You should end each row in approximately the middle of the repeat for the color you chose for the edges, and your contrast color should be the at its peak in the middle of your row. When you get to the end of your first row, you may find that you’re not quite to the middle of your edge color. If this is the case, simply use the Backwards Loop cast on again to add a couple of stitches to get you to the middle of your color. Or you may find that your row has too many stitches, and you’ve gone past the middle of your edge color repeat. If you find yourself in this situation, simply place a marker and turn your work, ending the row early. If you’re feeling daring, you could even just drop the stitches for the remainder of the row and continue working back.
4. Verify colors line up and do some math!
Next you’ll want to knit a few rows of garter stitch, verifying that your colors will continue to line up appropriately. You may find yourself tightening or loosening your grip a bit to help the colors match up more perfectly – that’s totally fine! Blocking will even it out and it will look lovely in the end!
Finally you’ll need to determine the number of stitches before and after the motif. You’ll start by counting the total number of stitches you have here, which allow your colors to line up correctly. Next you’ll subtract the number of stitches needed for the mosaic motif given in the pattern. You’ll take this resulting number and divide it by two to find the number of stitches before and after the section for the motif.