It might not technically be spring on the calendar yet, but an event occurred today that shows it has definitely arrived in Northeast Wisconsin. Yes...the robins have arrived!! I spotted one this morning and even though there still could be some cold temps and maybe even a little snow, it shows that winter's back has definitely been broken and the weather will steadily be improving.
To go along with that, I have photos of a spring shawl I knit last week. It's the Swallowtail designed by Evelyn Clark (pattern from the Fall 2006 IK).
I used one hank of Handmaiden SeaSilk (70% Silk, 30% Seacell) and because it was nearly the exact yardage required by the pattern and since I didn't want to run out of yarn on the last row, I used the size 4 needles called for in the directions. In fact, when I weighed what was left after reaching the last row, I discovered that it was about 1/4 of the skein or 100 yds, which was just too much to waste with such pricey yarn. So I ripped out the entire shawl and reknit it on size 6 needles. This gave me a larger more wearable sized shawl than the small size when made on size 4's. I also like the drapey quality in the finished fabric when done on the larger needles as compared to the smaller ones.
The colorway is called Capri and even though it is variegated between blues and lavender, the patterning still shows up nicely. The nupps weren't bad! I guess after knitting the 7 st version in Galina's Lily of the Valley shawl last year, this 5 st version seemed much easier. Especially because it was done in St st instead of garter.
I've heard some reports that this yarn has an unpleasant odor but I didn't have any problems at all. Even while wet blocking it, I was surprised by the lack of any smell of silk. It is definitely a luxurious yarn that I'd love to use again. In fact, the shop had another colorway that I keep thinking would make a wonderful Flower Basket shawl; another springlike Evelyn Clark pattern that I've never knit. Could I be the last laceknitter on earth that hasn't made one--sometimes it feels that way.
Anyway, if spring hasn't sprung in your neck of the woods, I hope it's just around the corner!