I've been avoiding the finish work on the Princess for quite some time. It's partially a very bad habit of mine....as a process knitter I tend to either delay finishing so as to delay the inevitable or I just lose interest....but it's also partially because the finish work on this particular piece was so very daunting.
However, these things can only be avoided for so long before they become the proverbial albatross...
And this was definitely becoming the albatross.
In addition to burying some ends I also had to graft the ends of the border edging together, check and fix any pulls and repair the snap that was heard round the world.
As you can see, the break was right at the base of a stitch at the beginning of the triangular center portion. In fact, it pulled the stitches tight so technically the break was probably in the middle of that first row of five stitches. I managed (THANK GOD!) to secure the wee tail of yarn when it first happened. Had I not, this entire thing would have been a certified disaster and I could have lost 60ish hours of work. (Gives one the shivers to contemplate.)
In order to repair the break, I am going to need to weave in about a yard of yarn - half back over the stitches in the central triangle so that the knitting doesn't unravel and half from the break outward in order to secure the tail. Why yes I'm a bit paranoid so am going above and beyond with the amount of yarn. You would be too if you had 200-300 hours invested in a project like this.
As the work is so tiny, it really does require a dark background, bright lighting and something to hold the piece blocked open so that the stitches are easier to see. Once I successfully satisfied all of these requirements (and it took some experimentation), I carefully untied that wee knot and started chasing the tail back through the stitches with needle and yarn. It literally took me an an hour to get that first row just so (and the ornery part of me dares you to do it faster if you are shocked by that amount of time) After that I had to set it aside because my eyes were starting to pop out of my head. (I had already spent the afternoon burying loose ends and fixing the pulls.)
The plan is to get back to it just as soon as I finish up this post and do some housework. With a bit of persistence and patience I can finish the repair this afternoon, follow that up by grafting the raw edges together on the border, wash it this evening and pin it out to block before bed. If I can manage this, than I can take it to my guild meeting tomorrow and they can stop teasing me about it!
Of course, the real question then becomes....
What on earth am I going to do with something so beautiful?!