Friday, June 19, 2009

My First Shawl

Way back in March, I was in Hamilton visiting my parents, and for reasons I cannot fathom, I did not bring enough knitting! So I was there, with a 4.5 mm circular needle, most of my stash, but very limited patterns at hand. What I did have was the pattern for the very lovely Shetland Triangle shawl, I knew if I could just find a thin enough yarn, it would work. Thankfully I have two balls of's Quencha, a sport weight alpaca blend. Just right!

So I started that shawl, knowing I'd have to buy more yarn - 2 balls would just never be enough - and hoping that new order would match my old yarn. I came into it with the knowledge it would never be perfect, and for once in my life being totally okay with that. It was just something to fill my time and keep my fingers busy. I felt then, that if I wasnt' knitting I was going to go stir crazy, so regardless of how it turned out, I would at least be entertaining myself. No pressure at all. What a wonderful way to start a lace project!!

It's taken me until today to be offically finished. I've knit other things inbetween, or at least, one other thing - a February Baby sweater, pictures to come when I get them from my mom, yes I forgot my camera. doh. So the shawl actually knit up pretty fast, I did use 640.5 yards (585.7m) of yarn afterall! It was an addictive knit. I loved the pattern, watching it grow, the simple reapeat that was so easy to remember, yet to fulfilling to execute.

The blocking process for a shawl was utterly new for me. Usually I don't block anything! This had to be blocked, and it had to be done just right becuase it was going to stay in that position! I bought blocking wires from Knitpicks as I couldn't find a good local source. Once I bought them I, of course, stumbled on a thread on Ravelry that told me where to get them on the cheap. Oh well, next time! I waited very impatiently for the wires - the shawl had been done for about a week, and I wanted so badly to block it already.

Pinned, Stretched and Wired up

I blocked it the day the wires got to me! It took me over an hour to thread the wires and get it blocked out as evenly as I could. Man, what a pain in the ass that was! Seeing as we live in a small apartment, and the shawl, once blocked was really not small, the only available floor space to let it dry was under the bed. Thankfully it fit perfectly!

Shawl Under the Bed
I'm just thrilled with how it's turned out. I could not be more happy in fact. I don't think it could be any more lovely than it is, little mistakes and all. I bet you can't spot them either! :D

Blocked Shawl

Here's a close up of the tip. I'm so pleased with how the 'points' turned out! Just the hint of pointy-ness, exactly what I wanted. It may have taken a lot of effort to block it, but it sure was worth it.

Shawl Tail on Couch

This experiece has got me hooked on lace! I've got two more shawls on needles now, and skeins of yarn wating to make a third! I love this pattern so much I'm sure to make another one, at some point, at well :)