I love knitting lace. It doesn't matter if the pattern is plain and simple or elaborate and detailed. I trust that all I have to do is follow the instructions - yarn overs paired with just the right increases and decreases. Sometimes knitting lace is like wandering a labyrinth, and I follow along blindly. In the end, I'll have a nondescript blob of knitting that will be transformed through the magic of blocking into something wonderful.
The beauty of lace is that it never lies. That's one of the things I love about it. Lace knitting is precision knitting. I follow the pattern and, if it's written correctly and I follow the instructions, my knitting should work out stitch for stitch at the end of every row and every section.
It's ironic that what I most admire about lace knitting also annoys me the most. It never lies. If I work to the end of a row and I'm off by a stitch or more, it's time to backtrack, count and recount. Either I'm wrong or the pattern is wrong. When I check online for pattern errata and don't find any, the burden rests on me to find the mistake.
Even if I'm off by just one stitch, I will find the mistake. Yesterday morning I had some productive knitting time while waiting for my daughter to complete a fundraiser walk. Things were moving right along until I can to the end of a section and realized I had an extra stitch. One extra stitch. I dissected the pattern, counted and recounted. Somewhere I was off on the math, and it became a personal challenge to sort it out.
Sorting out often leads to ripping out. I found my mistake. If I start a section with one extra stitch, that extra stitch will come back and bite me. I assumed my stitch count was on target heading into that section. Had I taken ten seconds and counted my stitches, I would have realized I was off by one.
Back on track and ready for the next section.
Yes, my stitch count is correct. I've counted. And recounted.