Thursday, 26 May 2011

Pretty (posh) Yarn

At the moment, I'm in the midst of revision for my final university exams. It's scary how quickly it's been from a trembling fresher to a trembling finalist. So much of my time is spent rereading notes, writing essay plans and avoiding actually doing work by knitting, browsing online. However, updating the blog feels like a public confession that I am not actually working at that time, so it has been neglected (much better to procrastinate in secret?). I've also been working on projects that don't lend themselves well to blog updates - I could do plenty of pictures of my half-finished cardigan, lamenting that the second batch of wool I ordered was from a different dye-lot, but I like completeness and so have been holding out until it was finished.

On Sunday, however, I managed to be online at the hallowed time of 8pm - also known as the Posh Yarn update time. Like Wollmeise, Posh Yarn posts limited stock that disappears quickly. First, I attempted to purchase a couple of skeins of Sylvia 4-ply in the Land of my Fathers - a green colourway, with the intention of using it to make Esmée #3 (my ideal would be to make an Esmée out of Posh Yarn's Esmé base, but there wasn't any in the update this week). However, trying to buy three skeins proved too much and they were gone by the time that I had filled in my details. So I went back, took a deep breath and chose this:


It's Posh Yarn Sylvia 2-ply in colourway 'The Street Named Regret'. It's very pretty. It's also lace. And has silk in it. I've never used either before. It feels lovely, but I fear that I may die of boredom winding 875yds.


I think I want to make a shawl with it (once I have finished the cardigan). I usually choose projects based on the circular needles I have, so does anyone have any suggestions for this yarn using 2.5mm, 3.25mm or 5mm needles (or any crochet hook, sizes 3mm-6mm)?

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Endellion Shawl

This is a project on a Tuesday. Not a tool.


It was a struggle to photograph the entirety of the shawl, but hopefully you can build up a patchwork picture from the photos that I post. I took lots of photographs of the edging, because I think that it is quite beautiful, less of the garter stitch centre.

The Endellion shawl is a hybrid project - a garter stitch centre, based on the centre to the Multnomah Shawl by Kate Flagg, and then a crocheted flowery edging based upon the edging to the Midsummer Night's Shawl by Lisa Naskrent. It used one skein of Posh Yarn's Pamela in a colourway which I think was called 'Writing My Memoirs', but I'm not quite sure. Suffice to say it is dark blue, with 5% Stellina sparkle incorporated into the yarn. Initially, I was somewhat wary of a 'sparkly' yarn (they seem ubiquitous in UK indie dyers at the moment), but the sparkle isn't very obvious - it just gives it something a little magical when it catches the light, rather than looking like it has an obvious plastic strand in the yarn.


The intention with doing a hybrid knit-crochet project was to get the most out of both crafts - I wanted it to be densely stitched in the centre - hence the garter stitch, but lacy at the edge. I also wanted to take advantage of the low yardage and easier drape that you can achieve with dense stitches in knitting, so that there was more yarn left for the lacy crocheted flowers at the edge. I also wanted something slightly mindless at the beginning.

If you want to recreate the Endellion Shawl, then this is a rough guide: you'll need to knit the Multnomah centre until you have about 220 sts, then switch to looking at the Midsummer Night's pattern. I did three rows (because I hadn't got enough sts, but just do as many rows as you need to get the right number) of dc, adding increases at the centre like on the pattern (the chart is super helpful). Then I did Rows 5-7 of the edging twice, if you look atht the picture above, then you'll be able to see how I added extra increases at the centre.


This was a fun project- slightly mindless with all the garter stitch, but a great piece of problem solving to work out how to make the edging work. It also reminded me how awful I am at guessing how much yarn is left in a ball - I only did the edging once as I thought that I was about to run out, so I bound off. Then I realised that I had a sizable ball left so I decided to keep crocheting until I ran out - which was almost exactly after I'd done a whole repeat of Rows 5-7. Perfect!

Template by