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Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Moebius Magic

I have been fascinated by the work of MC Escher since I was a child. His incredibly accurate depiction of geometric impossibilities still entrances me. Some of his designs are optical illusions, but the Moebius strip is an amazingly mathematical reality: a continuous plane with only one edge. You can see the ants in the picture can just keep walking for ever and ever.
You can make a moebius strip out of a strip of paper by giving one of the short edges a half twist and attaching it to the other short edge. 
I came to knitting as an adult and at some stage stumbled across the idea of moebius knitting. Using the strip of paper idea, you could knit a strip of knitting and then graft it to the twisted edge, right? But someone had to go one better. Various people have dreamt up ways of casting on stitches so as to make a moebius plane without any grafting. I loved the idea, but didn't get into working out how to do it. Then a few weeks ago my friend C came to me with a knitting puzzle. She'd bought a pattern for a Moebius wrap and it wasn't working the way she'd expected. I had another look at the geometry and studied her pattern. It wasn't a true moebius, just an interesting twisted loop. We puzzled over it for a while and then shelved the problem. Now it's holidays and I can finally get back to it. I found this Moebius cast on tutorial and started knitting. I can't wait for it to grow enough so I can cast it off and see what I've got. 

4 comments:

Knitspingirl said...

I love the moebius concept & have 2 of Cat Bordhi's books: Magical Knitting; More Magical Knitting.
They are both dedicated soley to moebius knitting.
I find her cast on screws my tension up though ... the "centre line" of my moebius loops is always loose & sloppy. :(
I hope you don't encounter this problem! Can't wait to see the finished product!!

Textile Tragic said...

the centre line is a bit loose, but I'm hoping I can work it in with a nice warm bath. I'll let you know how I get on.

Dee said...

oooh this looks fascinating. I await with much interest to see the result. Promise to bring it so I may admire with my fingers, pleeeease?

Textile Tragic said...

If I don't bring this one it will be because the next one will be on my needles, either way you'll get to see and touch:)