I fudge around with patterns quite a bit - for a number of reasons.
Recently I wanted a simple lacey pattern for a mohair variagated yarn (need to get picture - promise soon) and came up with Fibonacci Eyelet Triangle.
If I do say so myself - it is working up beautifully. And usually when I do something like this it does.
Then I read various peoples blogs about how they swatch and calculate and rip and re-swatch and select a different yarn, etc,etc,etc. I think the most false starts I've ever made on a project was three, and two of them were less then 15 stitches.
So why is this? I put it sown to sheer dumb luck. Though I will admit normally it may be that subconsciously I put a lot more "thinking" time into a project then I am aware of - I know I like to have yarn marinate in stash a while when it hasn't been purchased with a specific project in mind - and it is rare that I don't have a pattern idea that mulls around for a few months in the back of my mind before I actually start it.
Whatever - I'm grateful so many of my projects come out in a manner I'm satisfied with. For example - the circular version of 'Progressive' I did earlier this year - - a whim; but it worked!
addendum - I've attached a picture of the tip portion of the triangle.
3/22/07 - the shawl has arrived in Scotland, where it will be the focus of a fund-raiser. They haven't decided whether to auction. raffle, or rent...