in which i followed your advice

Posted on Posted in designing, lace/shawls, projects, spinning and fiber

i was bad this weekend and i know it—i didn’t blog, i didn’t work on secret projects—but it was sooo good.

i knit all friday afternoon and evening on my little rose shawl while it snowed and snowed outside and a big pot of soup bubbled on the stove inside. they only predicted 1-2 inches, but by nightfall we could see we were in for it.
and on saturday i woke to this

and this

the back yard transformed into a seussian world, decorated everywhere with blobs of soft, white snow, piled high to form all manner of sculpture.

it’s hard to tell just how much came down overnight—certainly over two feet in the back yard, but more like 15 inches out front. i shoveled for several hours just to get the walks cleared (i like shoveling, actually), while david put in another couple to get the snow off the roofs and driveway.

today there is more evidence of life out there than on saturday; the squirrels are finding their way around after all.

it’s the strangest day for weather; the sun is brilliant in the very cold air, but it must be pretty humid, too—a coating of hoarfrost covers every little crooked tree branch and twig, long into the day.

add to the picture a sifting of very light, crystalline snow flurries—just barely there, but enough to catch the light so that it looks like shaved glass flying in all directions.

it’s really magical; i’m so lucky i’m not stuck in an office where i’d miss the show.

we did manage to pull together a spinning class yesterday morning—hey, when you need to hang with your girls, you need to hang with your girls, snow or not.

i worked on my blue border leicester fiber—i’ve got half of it spun and plied and in class, i got the other half nearly spun up. i can ply it in wednesday evening’s class and then wash it. it’s a rather surreal spinning experience after all that fine stuff i worked with during the summer and fall. luxury fibers may have ruined me for this . . .

i’ve got to skein up what i have to empty these bobbins, before i can continue. somehow, in the scurry to empty my old workspace during the week before christmas, my numerous spare bobbins got packed away somewhere and i cannot find them. all i have are what’s in my work basket—mostly hi-speed ones, since i’ve been spinning more laceweight in the last year. and when i spin laceweight, two or three bobbins is almost more than i need for any single project. however, this chunky yarn is eating up bobbins like crazy and it’s becoming inconvenient (especially when i know how many empty ones i own). david may actually be able to locate what i need, but for now i’m making do with spinning a bobbin and emptying a bobbin as i go.

so the weekend was lost for all the usual routines as we huddled indoors to stay warm, then unburied ourselves as needed. i threw caution to the wind where my deadlines are concerned and did mostly selfish knitting.

. . . it was totally worth it.

i finished my shawl before going to bed on saturday night

after everyone went home on sunday afternoon, i put it on to soak and threaded it up for a good blocking.

you can see a lot more of the detail now, especially in the shoulder and back area

i always love the way all the patterns come together at that outermost corners—the scarfy part that you flip here and there when you wear it

or at the center back hem

once i had it all threaded and pinned out, i got the money shot

it was completely dry in just a few hours, but i let it sit til this morning. i was anxious to unpin it, so i didn’t stop to steam the fabric beforehand, but now i wish i had—i think this cashmere/silk might possibly look even better with the cashmere fiber bloomed out and fuzzing a bit over the surface (and i’ll certainly take the time to do that on the one i’m knitting in my cash/silk handspun).

i took a little time this morning to play with it on the dress form so you can get an idea of what it looks like on the body.

just a little shoulder shawl with a victorian flavor (but not too, too victorian). it is constructed like a faroese shawl with some shoulder shaping, but the back panel is less pronounced, so it fits more like a triangle shawl with neck shaping—a sort of hybrid, maybe?

the pattern will have three sizes; one even smaller than this to wear as a scarf, and one larger, but not too large; i don’t think the hem motif will hold its impact if the body area gets too big (it could always be knit in a heavier yarn on bigger needles to make it larger, too).

i like this size a lot—it’s about 64 inches across the widest part and 21 inches down the center back. perfect for scarfing up around my neck or to cover my shoulders when i need it, without trapping my arms underneath. i love it.

this size uses approximately 525 yards, i think. the yarn, by the way, is discontinued, but you can purchase a nearly identical yarn at zen yarn garden; jade sapphire cash/silk is also the same. and of course it would be gorgeous in any number of lovely laceweights that we talk about here.

in fact, we will be using woolen rabbit tranquilo as the official sample yarn for this pattern. it knit up equally beautiful in my sample swatches

for me, the hem is spectacular—i just love the way this motif knits up in laceweight yarn, so dramatic, with its contrasting foreground and background; the solid areas appear to actually float when knit in such fine yarn.

the best news of all is that it looks like i can knit an identically-sized one from the supply of handspun cash/silk i have, yay. in fact, i did not stop at merely getting the rose shawl done and then going back to my deadline projects—yesterday i stayed in “bad girl” mode just a little longer to cast on for the next one.

after all, sundays are for rest and recreation, right? there’s always monday just around the corner, for getting back to the grindstone . . .

and with that, it’s time to locate my secret knitting and get ready for my class to arrive.

81 thoughts on “in which i followed your advice

  1. I bet that color looks great on you, too, Anne. It’s just so beautiful. You did a fabulous job as usual. . . . . sorry for all that horrendous snow! but diversity is a good thing, right??

  2. Okay, another Anne Hanson design I can’t wait to knit! Beautiful shoulder/neck shaping, lovely lace pattern – another winner!

    I just have to decide what yarn I’ll use.

    Oh, and wait for you to issue the pattern (no pressure)

    Perhaps I could concentrate on finishing my Highlander 😉

  3. That is, as usual with you, gorgeous! I can’t wait to see the one in the handspun though. Just that little peek already has me drooling.

    I’m so glad you know how to play hooky now and a again. That is much harder to do (but more necessary) when you aren’t a 9-5 5 day a week office worker. When the lines between home and work blur it is important to remember to occasionally take a weekend off.

  4. Ooh! Ooh!! I’m drooling… And I think you’ve just designed the shawl that my skein of handspun merino/silk has been waiting for 🙂

  5. Wow! What a great shawl! I love pink so it is extra pretty to me. Great you had a bad girl weekend. Excellent you had a wonderful birthday too. I missed wishing you a happy birthday on the day but have just caught up on some blog posts. So wonderful to see you having such a happylife! Love the snow. I can from afar, I don’t feel the cold of it, I just see its beauty. Happy Knitting.

  6. Another one for the queue! I simply must learn to knit faster or find a different job… I think I’m going to have to treat myself to some Tranquilo too; the colors are beautiful.

  7. gorgeous!! (as usual!) I especially love all the little details on the shawl, and thank you for making it in 3 sizes!! I see a scarf size with beads in my future :}}

  8. Bravo Anne!!! beautiful beautiful!!! is it ready to test knit yet? I’ll have to start stash diving .. hmmmmm

  9. that little shawl is pretty! and then you toss ‘cash-silk’ in there…i think i’m a sucker for luxury fibers….it’s nice to see such a bright spot on such a gloomy day

  10. I can’t find the words to describe how beautiful this shawl is. I love that it has a Victorian but not over the top Victorian look. And I’m super happy it is available in 3 sizes. I love the color too.

  11. I love the shawl! I was wondering if those are wires you bent for the blocking, or something else – cables? How do you block such gorgeous curves?

  12. Ok, you’re going to think I’m crazy: I’m so jealous of all that snow! Our winter up here in Seattle has been so mild, and this Colorado girl is going nuts without snow. Can I come visit?! 😛

    That shawl is so beautiful!! Yet another of your patterns to put in my queue.

  13. I guess I should have looked at this post before I made my comment for your latest post. i love love love that shawl. Do you mind if I convert it to a wrap? I like the edge pattern a lot.

  14. Anne, I am breathless! It is so beautiful! I just got done telling everyone that Fernfrost was your most beautiful design ever. Well, then this is sublime! I can’t wait to go at it!!!!

  15. Good lord! So hard! How do you do it? It makes me sick to my stomach. It’s that good. I envy your great talent. WOW!

  16. Ohoh! Any idea when this pattern will become available? Other pursuits took me away from knitting for a while, but this is LOVELY and I have just the languishing stash-yarn for it…it’s been a little while since I’ve wandered into a pattern and felt all fired up about it!

Comments are closed.