Filed Under (Dyeing, Knitting, Shawls/Scarves, Socks) by jennyk on 30-06-2006

No pictures today, but I might get some taken over the weekend as I have a lot of things that need to be photographed. However, we have to go new-to-us car hunting urgently this weekend as our current one died this week.

My most urgent current project, other than the car, is to get at least two more pairs of slippers knitted for my mother by her birthday (less than 4 weeks). The old ones wore out too quickly, so I am going to use the same yarn I used for her socks, as that seems to be lasting better. It’s Paton’s Diploma Gold DK, and I picked up 4 balls each of navy and denim so I can make at least 3 pairs of slippers and one more pair of socks, maybe a second pair of socks too. That’s how many she requested for her birthday, but she doesn’t expect me to get them all done in time.

I’ve been swatching for other projects – the Mystery Stole 2 KAL and the Icarus shawl from the latest Interweave Knits. I haven’t joined the Icarus KAL yet but I might. The Icarus is for me, and I have a cone of 2/16 cashmere from ColourMart UK. I can’t stop fondling the swatches as they feel so wonderful.

I’m doing the Mystery Stole in Skacel Merino Lace, which is almost cobweb weight, so it will actually be a scarf. I’ll probably end up giving that one away, unless I totally fall in love with the pattern when I finally see it complete.

Before I start either of those, I’m trying to finish the edging on the fan stitch half circle shawl from Waterman’s shawl book.

I’ve also been washing and dyeing free (yes, free) BFL fleece. I got 4 fleeces for just a contribution to the petrol (gas) costs of the friend who collected them. They aren’t bad, even though they were sheared by the farmer’s neighbour and were going to be burnt as it wasn’t worth him sending them to the Wool Board. They have quite a bit of VM, but mostly straw and not too difficult to pick out,

Well, that’s all the fibre news from Chez Jenny for today. I hope I’ll manage to do the next update a bit more promptly than this one.

Filed Under (Knitting, Lace, Shawls/Scarves) by jennyk on 05-03-2006

I tried to get a better photo of the shawl when I took it over to show my mother, but the pictures weren’t very good. I can’t take any more now as my mother loved it so much that it didn’t come home with me. I’ll try to get it away from her for long enough to get more photos eventually. Meanwhile, here is the best one:

Springtime shawl finished.jpg

Filed Under (Knitting, Lace, Shawls/Scarves) by jennyk on 02-03-2006

It is finally finished and blocked and currently drying on our bed. I used wires to block it, along the top edge and a pattern repeat in from the scalloped edges (visible in most of the pictures), then pinned the loops of the scallops before removing the ‘internal’ wires. The blocked size is 72″ by 43″, and it took almost exactly 1000 yds of Zephyr. Click on the picture of the whole shawl to see a larger version. I’ll try to get pictures of it draped and/or being worn this weekend.

Springtime shawl 4.jpg

Springtime shawl 4 - edging.jpg

Springtime shawl 4 - corner.jpg

Filed Under (Knitting, Lace, Shawls/Scarves) by jennyk on 07-02-2006

I’ve now reached the stage at which I need to decide whether to add an extra repeat of the main pattern before adding the border and edging. I decided to pin it out and measure it so I knitted half the stitches onto a second long circular needle. When I tried to stretch it out, I lost a few stitches at each end – eek!!!

I think (and hope) that I managed to get them back onto the needles correctly. Then I finished the other half of the row before slipping the stitches onto 4 blocking wires. It pinned out to 50″ by 27″ so if I don’t add the extra repeat, it will end up about 67″ by 36″. I think I will have to add that repeat, making the finished shawl about 75″ by 40″. At least I’m now confident that I have enough yarn to do that.

Anyway, I suppose some of you want to see a photo. I had to climb on a chair to get this one, so I won’t be able to get a good photo of the finished shawl being blocked.

Springtime shawl 3.jpg


I got a treat in the mail today, an abacus pendant I had ordered from my friend Tricia. Click on the image for a bigger picture …


If you don’t know how they work, they are row counters, though of course you can use them to count anything you want. You slide a “one” bead past the ‘stopper’ (an elasticated ring of beads) at the end of each row, and when you get to the 10th row, you slide the mall back and move one of the “ten” beads past the stopper instead.

Tricia makes abacus bracelets as well as the pendants, which are small enough you can pin them to your knitting instead of putting them on a neck cord if you prefer. I love the pendant and bracelet I already have, so I ordered a custom-made pendant with a different number of beads so I could use it to count rows within pattern repeats rather than 1-10 etc.

Filed Under (Knitting, Lace, Shawls/Scarves) by jennyk on 28-01-2006

… and now it is eeasier to see how the pattern repeats. At the moment it is 27″ across the top. The selvedge tightness stops me stretching it any further, though I could (and probably will when I block the finished shawl) stretch it a bit more vertically. I had already been trying to keep the selvedge loose, but it seems I need to try harder on the knit rows as that edge is slightly tighter.

Springtime shawl 2.jpg

Filed Under (Knitting, Lace, Shawls/Scarves) by jennyk on 26-01-2006

I’ve started a pattern I’ve been wanting to do for a while now. It’s Kinzel’s Springtime pattern adapted to a triangular shawl by Glenda Hunt. I’m doing it in Jaggersun Zephyr laceweight wool/silk on 3.5 mm needles. It is actually Royal Blue, but the flash has affected the colour in the photo. It was going to be for a friend, but I didn’t have the right colour yarn for her, and I do love this colour and the pattern, so …

Springtime shawl - start.jpg

Filed Under (Knitting, Lace, Shawls/Scarves) by jennyk on 11-05-2005

I finally finished my exchange shawl, and it is on its way to the swap hostess. I used Heartstrings’ Pendants Faroese pattern and 4-ply merino lambswool. That “4-ply” is the UK yarn weight description, equivalent to thin sportsweight, but the yarn is actually 2-ply. It is as soft as you would expect, and very nice to use, and being coned, there are no joins.



The distinctive feature of Faroese shawls, of course, is the shoulder shaping which gives a good fit and lessens the problem of the shawl slipping off all the time. This pattern uses the lace design itself to give the necessary increases.


That shaping would cause problems if blocking the shawl laid out flat, so it needs to be blocked while folded. Jackie says it doesn’t need pinning or wires, but I found that helped.


With that out of the way, I’ve been working on my other shawl, for me this time, and I am ready to cast it off. Two shawls finished in the same week – definitely a record for me! I probably won’t block that one until my Zonta wires arrive. 

I also finished a woven silk scarf for my guild’s annual Challenge, but I forgot to take pictures before I handed it over. I’ll get it back the weekend after next, so I’ll take pictures then.

I plan to get back to the Sanquhar gloves and another shawl (laceweight this time) and the socks I started for myself before Christmas, I think. I have a couple of ideas for the loom too, but more on those later.

Filed Under (Knitting, Shawls/Scarves, Socks) by jennyk on 13-02-2005

Earlier this month, I finished a pair of socks for a friend, but I didn’t want to post pictures here until she had received them. She has them now, so here they are (pictured before washing, and not on Ann’s feet):

Anns sock.jpg

Here is a close-up of the faux plaited cable, actually a slipped stitch ‘cable’ from Barbara Walker’s first Treasury, p108:

Anns sock detail.jpg

The yarn is Super Sport Strumpf wool/nylon, given to me long ago by a kind Knitlister living in Germany. It has been maturing in my stash waiting for the perfect recipient.

My current small project is Sanquhar gloves, similar to these but with a different traditional stitch pattern. The SWRI has patterns for 4 versions of these gloves. I am swatching J&S laceweight. I have done a swatch on 2 mm needles which is too loose for the gloves to fit my narrow hands, so I started another on 1.75 mm (promising!) and I’ve just changed to 1.5 mm. I’ll post photos later.

My other WIPS are socks for me in Opal and 2 Faroese shawls, both from Heartstrings. Pendants is for a friend, and ALF (All-Over Lace Faroese) will probably be for me unless I decide I haven’t time to knit another shawl for an exchange with a May deadline.

Filed Under (Knitting, Lace, Shawls/Scarves) by jennyk on 14-03-2004

First pictures of the finished Estonian Garden scarf/stole – there may be more to follow. Click on these pictures to see larger versions (close popup between clicks, or the second one will come up in the wrong size window):


This seems an appropriate day to finally start a blog, though given my difficulty in maintaining a diary I wonder how good I will be at updating this. I suppose the only way to find out is to try …

This is intended to be a blog of my fibre activities, not my personal life (I bet you are relieved to read that!) So, what do I have to report today?

I have a number of projects I should be starting in the next few days. Two of them are knitalongs, which will be a new experience for me. I’ve been swatching for one of those, the Estonian Garden wrap from Fiber Trends. My first swatch was using a grey Shetland singles (not spun by me), but that skewed badly so I’m going to save that for a garter stitch lace project rather than try to block the skewing out of the wrap. My second attempt was with a 2/15 merino weaving yarn:

EG merino swatch.jpg

I like this one, the look and the hand of the fabric, but I don’t have it in a colour I’d like for this wrap and I can’t get more before the knitalong is due to start. I do have some 2/18 white merino yarn on its way, so I’ll probably swatch that when it arrives. If it works, I’ll dye some for the wrap.