What is that peaking out from behind my newest shawl?
I got myself a little present. When something special comes along, you just have to go for it, right? It remains to be seen if this will get me spinning all of that fiber I have. The arrival of the really nice fleece I sent out for processing might help....
Now, the shawl. I LOVE THIS SHAWL!
- Pattern: Mountain Peaks Shawl by Miriam Felton of MimKnits. (ravelry link)
- Yarn: Ball and Skein Hand-Dyed Zephyr in the very special and wonderful colorway, Manise.
- Needles: Addi Lace size 5
- Cast On: May 20, 2009
- Bound Off and Blocked: June 22, 2009
This yarn came to me over a year ago at SPA and the second I saw it I knew exactly what shawl to knit with it. Came to me in a flash of brilliant intuition and boy, was that intuition right. I really wish I had been blogging it as I was knitting it. I remember thinking along the way that I would be sure to mention 'this' when I blog or 'that', but can I remember it all? I even went back and looked at the charts and tried to shake some of the memories out, but this is all I can come up with. First, this shawl challenged me with a couple of new-to-me techniques that weren't difficult, but kept me on my toes. The first is lace work on both sides of the work. The first chart has yarn overs and decreases on both sides of the work which had me married to the chart (actually, I was attached to the charts the entire time). This was not the knitting to take to parties and knitting in the car (or on a bus ride home from NYC that took all day) usually had me tinking out to find errors quite a bit.
If I am making the knitting sound like a chore, I really never felt that way. I loved every second of knitting and most of the tinking. The other thing I haven't done is knit a border onto a lace shawl, and that was a huge mental block for me. Not really the concept, I totally get how that works and it went well. The border chart is repeated twenty-four times and I never really got the hang of it, I'm blaming the lace work on the wrong side, it never felt intuitive to me and I'm not sure if that is me or the knitting. To be sure, there are some definite patterns to the beginning and end of each of the rows, some of which clicked for me about half-way through and the rest in the final repeats. That is unusual for me and I think maybe my mind was elsewhere over the last couple of weeks making it hard for me to see the obvious.
The bottom corner is knit on using short rows and I probably should have knit that in a quiet room, free of all distractions because when I got to the end of it I had too many stitches, by one. So I knit three together instead of two and went on my merry way, but the corner just looked, well. Wonky. I pulled it back and redid it, thank heavens, all went well the second time and it is lovely.
What else.... Did I mention I adore this shawl? It is difficult to photograph, but this shot shows the lace work, if not the color, pretty well. Look at the mountains in the border! This entire work just charms me to paralysis, I can't stop looking at it. Can we talk about the color for a minute? Judy outdid herself in my opinion. I would knit this colorway forever, it is just that beautiful. I don't see any on her website, but maybe she will put it back in the dye vat?
I'm not sure what took me so long to knit this shawl. I did notice that the knitting went quite a bit faster on the second and third charts, which have plain purl rows on the wrong side, but even though the border chart has lace work on both right and wrong side rows, there aren't that many stitches. I started the border on the weekend I was in NYC and it took two weeks for me to work (knit, knit, tink. Knit, knit, tink), which surprised me. I had even brought another project with me on that little jaunt, delusional in the thought that I would need it. There are long stretches on the second and third chart of only knit stitches. My tip for you: Count them ahead of time and write in the stitch count, saves a lot of time. I also did it on the the border chart and with the number of repeats on that thing I can only imagine it saved me hours of counting, miscounting, tinking and reknitting. Did I mention that I have a huge crush on this shawl?
Hey! Have you contributed to Claudia's MS Ride yet? She is hasn't quite met, but is so close to her goal. Can you spare another $10? Look at what it might win you, there are some great prizes. Your last chance is Sunday morning. Go! Donate! Every little bit helps.
Seventy-six. I'm feeling the need to knit a sweater or something. It should come as no surprise that I have more lace shawl on the needles.