i think anne is a little blown away you guys.
i’m know when we first set out on our collaboration, neither of us, in our wildest dreams, imagined the force that would become the Bee Shawl.
we thought we would do a cool project together and sell some kits and patterns.
the first hint that it could be Big was the day i posted swatch-o-rama, and people started asking about, and preordering, the kit before i even set my needles to the actual shawl yarn.
(the absoluteness of your faith in me just launches my boat).
so, back to anne. there has been a small amount of confusion about the kit’s availability, because it isn’t posted in her store yet, but NEVER FEAR!
this kit is being offered as her kit of the month for august.
in it will be plenty of yarn to knit the largest-size shawl, and a copy of the pattern.
anne always posts her kit of the month 2 weeks early, so that people who put in early orders can get free shipping. with this kit, she also took preorders, because well, there were preoderERS (hee-hee—you invented yourselves—you guys ROCK!).
people who preorder do not see the kit—they are ordering based on what they’ve seen here at knitspot, and they just let her know they want one.
SOO, here’s the deal. the kit is not sold out. the kit goes up for sale to the general shopping public on sunday, july 15th. you can preorder one by going to anne’s website and using the contact form in the sidebar to send her a nice note.
all orders will be filled in the order they are received, and anne has stockpiled all sorts of convenient meals for the next few weeks so she can concentrate on dyeing bee yarn.
as far as i know, anne intends to keep the kit on her site for as long as orders come in, so there is little danger of NOT getting one if you want one (anne, correct me if this is wrong . . . and i apologize ahead of time if you are still dyeing that yellow-green yarn into the next decade and simultaneously not speaking to me any more . . . hehehe.)
OK, let’s talk about something else . . . cara finished a gorgeous moth shawl this week and her post brings up an issue that many shawl knitters are familiar with.
(cue in ominous music) the Too-Tight Bindoff
binding off nicely can be rough enough, but facing an edge with 500+ stitches and the instructions to “bind off loosely” can be downright hateful if you know you have never achieved “loose” and “bindoff” in the same time warp.
i’m sure you’ve tried using a bigger needle. heh. i’ve done that too, and all i get is bigger stitches that are too tight.
i don’t like those bigger stitches either—to me they always look messy and lacking in tension.
here are my two tricks for binding off. they never fail me and i am always able to stretch my shawls as much as i need to.
i make david do it.
just kidding. ok, for real, here are my two bindoff tricks:
first of all, on all my bindoffs, i use an elastic method i learned years ago from a vogue knitting article:
knit 2 sts onto the RH needle, but don’t completely pull the second stitch off the LH needle.
bindoff on the RH needle as usual,
keeping that second st on the LH needle the whole time
and after you pull the bindoff over the RH needle tip, THEN pull the remainder of the second st off the LH needle.
this creates a beautiful castoff edge on all garments, and i don’t find i need to use a larger needle. this edge still has a stretching limit so it is great for sweaters and any other article where the edge needs to be stable, but not tight.
on shawls, especially those with scalloped edges, i use the same bindoff technique, and add in yarnover bindoffs (YOBO) every few stitches where the edge curves outward. a YOBO is performed on the RH needle as follows: wrap the yarn around the RH needle
and pull the previous stitch over it.
it makes a kind of chain stitch in between two knit bindoffs which allow them to spread apart. this works very nicely for me, and i haven’t it used it on an edge yet that didn’t have enough give in the end. on very lacy edges that have points, you can even add multiple YOBOs.
when i bind off a shawl edge, i always try out what i think is the right tension and number of YOBOs on one scallop, or about 6 inches of edge. then i pause and stretch it to see how elastic it is. it should stretch a LOT, and not feel like it has a limit (within reason).
you can also use a crochet bindoff, and add chain stitches in between the ege stitches on the outward curves. this is recommended in mariane kinzel’s lace books. i haven’t had as much patience or success as i should with using the crochet hook, and i suspect this method looks best when used with cotton thread or very fine wool. i’m a very experienced crocheter, but i am all thumbs when using the hook with knitting needles, so this is my least favorite method.
i have only this wee bit of knitting that’s new. i finished my summer fun socks in class yesterday and then when i came home i worked on the orchid lace mitts. for about 30 minutes, and then i crashed.
i so didn’t even see the end of the bike race. david saved it for me though and we’ll watch the rest tonight and i’ll knit lots.
that’s a promise. because tonight i have a secret weapon against tiredness
from my pal bloglessKim in SD. she even sent some for david. mmmm