Thursday, August 13, 2009

The Big Shawl

The shawl is done, and it is large. How big is it? It's so big that I had to block it on our spare queen-sized bed, and I had to pin one end point down the side of it. It's so big that I can't fit the whole thing in the picture!

Pattern: Fountain Pen Shawl [Ravelry link] by Susan Pierce Lawrence, spring 2009 Interweave Knits
Yarn: my handspun two-ply laceweight (80% merino, 20% silk from All Spun Up)
Needles: US 6 (4.0 mm) Knit Picks Options
Started/Completed: July 5/August 12
Dimensions: approximately 83.5" across by 41.5" tall
Mods: none

Don't let the time from cast on to cast off fool you; this was a very fun knit. The only reason it took me as long as it did was because I was a bit busy spinning and knitting little things. The pattern for the body of the shawl is very intuitive, with only two rows that have any particular challenge -- the ones with the nupps.

Ah, the nupps. So much fun and yet so much trouble. They aren't too difficult provided you do the increasing row loosely, but more than once I accidentally purled the five stitches in one together with an adjacent stitch, resulting in some difficulty on the next row. Luckily, my handy tool came in quite handy, and I was able to fix the errors without too much difficulty. I think that if I knit this shawl again, I might use beads in place of the nupps for a different effect.

As always, it was a joy to knit with my own handspun. I love the subtle striping effect I got over the whole shawl. It's not so much that it obscures the lace pattern, but it does add a little interest.

At one point, I'd considered adding an extra repeat or two to the body of the shawl. In the end, I decided that it would be big enough if I followed the pattern as written. Turns out that was a very smart move on my part. Why? Here's what's left of the original almost-900-yard skein:

A whopping three grams of yarn. That was a close one!


  1. It's gorgeous!! You have every reason to be extremely proud of the spinning and the knitting, and yourself!!

  2. Love it, love it, love it! I will have to move this one to the head of my queue!

  3. You did this one in record time as far as I'm concerned--it came out perfectly!

  4. Oh man, this turned out great! I can't wait to start my Fountain Pen. Yours is really marvelous.

  5. Lovely! The shading of the nupps turned out especially well.

  6. Anonymous12:02 PM


  7. Beautiful work, as always!

  8. What an inspiring project! Very beautiful colours, lovely spinning, and of course fantastic knitting too!

    I always love seeing what you are creating... a very talented fiber artist!

  9. Having seen it in person, all I can say is IT'S SO BEAUTIFUL!!!

  10. Gorgeous! Love the subtle gradation between the colors!

  11. Wow is that gorgeous!

  12. Anonymous9:41 AM

    So, was this difficult lace or mindless? Gorgeous. Now you don't even have to buy yarn anymore since you've been spinning up a storm.