Peach Pit's best buddy is Little Frog. Little Frog's maternal grandmother is here for a long visit from Serbia to take care of Little Frog's new little sister. Last Sunday morning, Peach Pit and I visited Little Frog and family, a short enough drive from here that we should have walked in the crisp autumn sunlight.
Now the grandmother does not speak any English, but she knits. Good enough! Little Frog's father brought out some things that Grandmother had knit, and I duly admired them. Beautiful stitch patterns, beautiful construction. Using an interpreter (Little Frog's mom), I asked Grandmother to teach me one of her stitch patterns. After she worked a dozen rows with such felicity that I'm sure she could do it in her sleep, I persuaded her to give me the needles, and gave it a shot. It still took a little bit of her hands guiding mine, but I got it - all but the edging, a lovely twisty number that was not part of the pattern. Maybe next week. She wants me to come back so she can teach me some more!
I was surprised to learn that she did not bring any yarn or needles with her. Poor thing, I thought. Little Frog's mother explained that her philosophy was more that knitting was work, and when someone needs a particular item, you take the needles out, knock it off, and then go back to the other chores. What a difference between that and the indulgent dalliance that knitting is for me.
So where's the swatch? Frogged, because it was interrupting knitting already in progress. The stitch pattern is below, and I'll eventually knit it up again and place a photo.
Row 1: Kx - (P2 - Kx) repeat
Row 2: Px - (YO, K2tbl - Px) repeat
Row 3: Kx - (P2 - Kx) repeat
Row 4: Px - (K2tbl, YO - Px) repeat
(I used x = 3.)
I almost read this from her knitting, but I had guessed that K2tbl (knit two together through back loop) was just knit two together. Since Barbara Walker's books seem so comprehensive, I would not be surprised to rediscover the pattern in her stitch encyclopediae. I'll let you know when I do.
Editing note: originally when I put up the stitch pattern, I only had the first two rows. Also, when I saw this pattern used in a finished piece, the odd-numbered rows do in fact face the public side, though the private side is equally pleasing.