So here it is everyone- my next square for my Pratchett Afghan. This is Decembers offering and the book we were working from is Equal Rites.
The plan for this square was bit harder to come up with. Equal Rites is not one of my favourites books. It has scenes I like but there isn't one that really defines it for me. So once again I was forced to go with a collection of symbols and combine different elements from the book. It did turn out looking a bit like a giant eye however which is unfortunate, as its meant to be the staff lying in a pool of water surrounded by ice. I love the bit when Granny and the Arch Chancellor have to go out to fetch staff and they find it sulking in the Ankh. Granny has to give it the hard stare and a stern telling off.
Anyway, the ice is then surrounded by the grey sparkly sand of that in between place where the 'monsters' live. I had some lovely luxury Donagal Aran Tweed left over from a Christmas present that I used for this so its wonderfully soft and fun to knit with. Which acts as a good contrast to the metallic thread that I put through with it which is a bit crunchy but oh so twinkly. I put a border of darker grey in to try to help keep the focus central but I think this only added to eye effect.
Anyway, after that I had a near disaster. When tying in all the threads on the back of my rather naff intarsia I accidentally cut something that I shouldn't have. I had stranded across the back of the blue water which had puckered it a bit. When investigating and tying in ends I chopped through some of the stranding. Argh! Nearly had a hideous unravelling of intarsia nightmare. Luckily I was at my parents house which meant that I had access to an embellisher. So I felted the ends into the back of the knitting and then carefully proceeded to cut the rest of the threads and do the same with them. This meant that the blue bit stopped being puckered which was a lucky break on what could have been a complete and total disaster. I think it would have broken me- it took days to complete the intarsia.
But phew, all was okay. I took the opportunity to add in a little detail whilst I was there. I felted some octarine around the edge of the water. Not only because it covered up the edges but also to reference the strong magical discharge that was occurring at the time. Ahem. And I cut some monsters out of grey felt and embellished them on round the edges as well. I also had a quick run over the ice to make sure that I had tied in any loose ends. I was forced to add in quite a few sections of yarn when knitting the ice. I was using some left over bamboo yarn and it seemed to take a ton more of it than I had anticipated. It made good ice but the ends are really splity and have a horrible habit of popping out all over the place.
After that it was all detail. The staff I embroidered by hand. I raided my mums bead stash and picked out all the odd shapes to represent the worlds that Simon's makes for the blobby creatures. I stitched round the monsters to make them stand out- three tone grey just didn't work. As a final touch I added in Esk's necklace that she gets from the Chief Liar of the Zoons (the blue spiracle on a fine silver chain).
Something that I hadn't noticed I had done but someone on Ravelry pointed out to me was to include the star from Esk's wizard hat. So I ended up adding more stuff in than even I had realised. I had it finished at about 10:30 New Years eve so I got to start the new year on a positive which was nice.
Next book though is 'Mort' and whilst ideas are not a problem for this one, executing them in yarn format will be. I'm still waiting for the wheels to fall off of this whole project and I just know its going to be an early book that makes itself difficult. Hmm, probably best not to think about it right now. Have to work out how to not do crap intarsia and do good intarsia instead!