Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Shetland Garden Shawl

When I saw this pattern I knew it had to jump to the head of the To Do list, and I knew exactly which yarn I wanted to use... the first cone of cashmere I bought from Colourmart, which has been quietly sitting and waiting for the perfect project. Here it is:

The photo doesn't really do it justice... it was hard to get the whole shawl into the picture, and the lighting wasn't ideal. Here is a closeup:


Pattern: Shetland Garden Faroese Shawl by Sivia Harding
Yarn: 4-ply Cashmere from Colourmart, approx. 120 gm
Needles: Addi Turbos size US 5
Blocked size: 26" long at center back, 31" from neck to tip at center front

Sivia Harding describes the shawl as "a lacy garden of delights: marguerite daisies, Shetland ferns and Shetland leaves fall gracefully over the shoulders, while rose trellises adorn the bottom border." It is knit from the center top down, and the Faroese shape lets it sit gently on the shoulders without slipping off. It was a pleasure to knit. The charts are easy to follow, though I admit to having blown them up to see them better.

And then there is the yarn. On the cone, it looks more or less like a thin twine you might use to tie up a box. But the Colourmart instructions (and the advice of other users) warn you that it contains oil from spinning and that the finished garment should be washed in HOT water in dishwashing liquid and then... get this... put on low heat in a clothes dryer for a few minutes before blocking. I had done that with a swatch, and the metamorphosis was amazing! Nonetheless, washing a finished object in very hot water was nerve wracking, and I don't think I was able to breathe while it was in the dryer. But when it came out of the dryer, still a bit damp, I could already see how incredibly soft it had become, and blocking did its usual magic on the lace design.

Thank you, Colourmart, for this amazing yarn, and thank you, Sivia Harding, for your beautiful design.

7 comments:

Trish said...

OMG, that is gorgeous. What a lot of work. I wish I had the patience to do that much lace.

Anne said...

That is beautiful. I'm umming and ahhing at the moment as to which lace shawl to knit - I think you may have helped me to decide...

fleegle said...

That is absolutely stunning! And it would look great in black!

Louisa said...

Ooohhh-ahhhhh!!! Totally gorgeous shawl, Joyce! Isn't my buddy Sivia just the most elegant knit designer?

Operakatz said...

Wow your shawl is just GORGEOUS! That's in my pattern stash for someday....

Sande Francis said...

Beautiful work! I also have that pattern in the stash, but I'm thinking I need to make the center wider to fit my "wide body" profile. :) I keep going to the colourmart site and drooling, but no cashmere in my stash yet.

Sande

Jane said...

Beautiful work! I took out that pattern (purchased but never opened) and saw all those charts and I have to say I am even more impressed with your skill and fortitude! I have some beautiful cashmere from the same place and will be looking at my stash with an eye to making this shawl after I finish one of my other projects. Your work is an inspiration!