Fiber Corner

Daily life of a knitting designer/publisher of handknitting patterns

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Into the Woods

As one can see from this photo of my backyard sugar maple tree, the typical colored leaves of autumn haven't begun to appear in this neck of the woods. But, it won't be long now.

Though, I recently finished Sivia Harding's Norwegian Woods shawl that illustrates another change of season, that of winter into spring.

First come the Winter Branches.
Then, the Budding Twigs and Emerging Leaves.
Ending in a shady leaf covered bower.
This is what I think of as a sampler shawl--several patterns put together, many times along some sort of theme. Sometimes they look rather disjointed, I know a couple of weeks ago at Wi S&W I saw several examples of a very popular design that looked that way. Not so with this design. Sivia skillfully has balanced the different stitch patterns--some with more openness than others. But, all of them with that nice rhythm that makes them fun to knit.

The only change I made to the pattern was in the working of the double decreases. Instead of a SK2P (slip one, knit 2 together, pass the slipped stitch over), I worked a SS2K.

First Slip 1 as if to knit
Then, insert your needle as a k2tog but instead, slip them to the right needle.
Then insert your left needle into the front of all three sts on the right needle and knit them together. It results in a decrease with the same st on top as if you SK2P but is more efficient.
I also worked the S2KP in the same manner. One thing to always keep in mind about double decreases, the stitch your needle touches first, is the one that will lay on top of the others.

In spinning news this week, I spun up the Mountain Colors Targhee in Ruby River.
It's 575 yds, of a light fingering weight. This was very sproingy fiber to spin. Some gloves are definitely on the horizon.

Okay, a few more thoughts on Norwegian Woods. This was a very fun knit, and would be a very good design to work if you happen to have a problem with different size YO's in lace. These can happen when a decrease occurs directly before the YO or directly after it, depending on your knitting style and tension. Most of the YO's in these stitch patterns (until the last charts) are simple eyelets, with the corresponding decreases happening elsewhere in the stitch repeat.

The scallops along the edge are very cleverly shaped and not that difficult to block--took a little more time than just making points but is so worth it. The beads add a nice touch.
Shawl stats:
Blocked Dimensions: 66" x 33"
Yarn: 810 yds spindle spun mohair/alpaca/silk laceweight yarn
fiber from Persimmon Tree/spindle used .9 oz Golding Tsunami
Size 3mm needles
Copper 8/0 beads along edge


At 5:35 AM, Anonymous Keri said...

I love the shawl! Such a pretty pattern. The shawl I am doing with Patty's alpaca is also a sampler shawl like this one. Great work!

At 3:08 PM, Blogger Melanie said...

Beautifully done! Is the Norwegian Woods spindle spun yarn a single or a two ply? It's so pretty, as is the Ruby River Targhee. That colour just makes me happy.

At 3:41 PM, Blogger Vicki said...

Thanks, Mel! The Persimmon Tree spindle spun is a 2 ply. Can't remember the WPI but it's very similar to Kidsilk Haze, in size and feel.

At 9:45 PM, Anonymous Kerry said...

Gorgeous shawl! You bought that fiber the day we met!! Boy, did that ever take you a long time!


Really, a beautiful job from beginning to end!

At 9:55 PM, Blogger Vicki said...

Hey Kerry, it was all your fault I bought that fiber! Once I saw yours, I had to go back the next day and get some, too.

At 7:22 PM, Blogger A Fiber Frolic said...

How exquisite! and poetic! You turn knitting and spinning into an art, not just a craft.


At 6:53 AM, Blogger June said...

Oh my goodness, Vicki!! It's so wonderful! This has pushed me over the edge (again) to get this pattern going! You simply are the best enabler out there!

As always, I love your spinning and the beads are such a perfect complimentary color! Yum!


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