Sunday, August 26, 2007

Mulberry Mitten

There's not much knitting going on here--I can only show you one finished mitten. The second one is still on the needles ;-).

The WIP:

Following Luni and Maud's suggestions, I ripped the UFO back to the cuff and continued working on it. Some modifications on the original chart have also been made--adding a few stitches for a more comfortable fit, refining the shapes of some leaves and buds, etc. By the way, everything's done using Microsoft EXCEL. I like how straightforward and flexible the program is, and I draw most of my charts--color work, lace, or cable charts with it. Final touch-ups are usually done with Adobe Photoshop.


Like some of my previous FOs, the mitten has a story behind it. The original pattern was extracted from a bronze pot, dating back to the Warring States Period of ancient China (475 B.C. to 221 B.C.). When I saw the semi-abstract carved figures, I was deeply moved. Here is a section:


You can immediately see how different the style is from those of ancient Greek and Roman decorative pictures. A human figure is presented in a same way that a tree, a bird, or a beast is depicted. Furthermore, even though several irrelevant activities are presented in one picture, they are all parallel and harmonious.

Now coming back to the design: you must have already found my motif from the picture--a girl sitting on a mulberry tree, picking leaves. Frankly, I was very surprised when seeing it. The ancient poems and essays never said that a girl had to climb up a tree to collect mulberry leaves!

12 comments:

Luni said...

Oh, so much better! I love the motif you chose, it is so delicate and graceful.
hmm. I use Excel for charts and notes, my stash inventory, all my knitting data. However, my charts are pretty simple. I was wondering if someone working with a more complex design would prefer a different program, but I'm happy enough and familiar with Excel.

JL said...

I love the Green.

Connie said...

Very cool, Iris. I've never seen figures like those you show. They don't seem typically asian to me. More modern and abstract as you put it. I'll ask my dad. His Chinese history is pretty good :)

Maud said...

Lovely, the green is so beautiful. Thank you for showing the inspiration to the chart!

Sarah-Hope said...

What a lovely piece of work! I would never have guessed that the motif is Chinese. It almost looks nordic or rune-like. Congratulations on an excellent design!

Knits & Stitches said...

Thank you!!

Those mittens are amazing!

Octopus Knits said...

It's beautiful! I love seeing the inspiration for it, too. Lovely!

Probably Jane said...

Beautiful - how clever of you to simplify your palette to bring this subtle design to life.

Krista said...

Is there any chance at all I might have this pattern? I've been looking for months for a pattern with some history that's not your typical fair-isle. You know? They really are beautiful!!

Best,
Krista

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