4 September 2009

Shetland Triangle Shawl: the full gory details

Shetland Triangle shawl for me

This is shaping up to be my Year of the Shawl. This one is my fourth so far and many more are in the wings. Pun intended.

Shetland Triangle shawl - wingspan

The wingspan of my new chunky Shetland Triangle Shawl is quite impressive, if I do say so myself. I'm very glad I broke into the third skein of yarn and kept going. The pattern instructions give eight repeats but I wanted it larger so did ten.

Shetland Triangle shawl for me

Knitting this was an absolute joy. I had the pattern down pat after the success of the last one and after knitting one in sock yarn, it was pleasing to repeat it in something chunky. It knits up with such satisfying speed.

Shetland Triangle shawl for me

This was truly a bargain shawl. My boss, an avid op shopper and crocheter herself, visits a certain rural op shop that shall remain nameless every weekend when she visits her elderly mother, and there is someone in that op shop who has too much time on their hands very dedicatedly unravels handknitted jumpers that come into the op shop, and then sells the yarn. I've had several calls from my boss this year saying There's a whole supermarket bagful of wool for $8 here, shall I buy it for you? and because I am weak cheap addicted and helpless easily pleased, I always say yes. So I had all this aran weight cream yarn wound into crinkly skeins, ready to dye with my huge stash of cherry and strawberry Kool Aid.

Shetland Triangle shawl for me

The knitting took just over two weeks. I love how quick shawls are to knit. Because you start with a very few stitches and increase every alternate row, you make a great deal of progress in a very short time, which is highly motivating. Yes, the last dozen rows can drag but by then you are so close to having a finished object that even a procrastinator extraordinaire like me is inspired to push through until the magic moment of cast off.

Shetland Triangle shawl for me

Actually the magic moment with lace knitting is blocking, not cast off. It's quite amazing the way you take a crumpled bundle of knitted mess and stretch it out to reveal its lacy glory. I told you the story earlier of how I was on the verge of purchasing blocking wires but at the last minute bought a set of welding rods instead (again with the cheap, bargain, etc). These made the job far more enjoyable than using a million pins, several of which need adjustment every single time you walk past because you keep seeing the thing from a different angle.

This shawl was threaded with the welding rods (I love saying that), manhandled into position in a very short space of time and then gazed at adoringly for several hours by both myself and the dog and I did not once want to stick my head in the oven because of the gazillion little pins that need adjusting every single time you walk ... etc etc etc. The dog even laid his chin gently on the shawl as it dried and didn't prick himself once on a nasty pin, however he removed his head promptly when he saw me giving him The Look of Death from the kitchen.

Speaking of Looks, here is me giving what someone on flickr called "the knitwear model gazes into the distance at something far more interesting" look, but I call the "I have 3 seconds in which to press the self timer, leap back against the wall, readjust the shawl which has slipped off my shoulder during said leap, hold my arm back to appear less round shouldered than I really am and show off shawl to best advantage and all this means I have no time to smile or even look natural" look. Enjoy. And laugh. Because I might just delete it in the cold light of morning tomorrow when the red wine has worn off.

forgetting to look happy in these self portraits

Vital statistics have been Ravelled.

I am overdue for a haircut.

50 comments:

Anonymous said...

Please don't delete that last shot - the shawl looks much better with a head above it! Siobhan/Shivi1

peskypixies said...

It is gorgeous.......sigh....just gorgeous...........I love how you get your wool.I did that once......unravelled a jumper and dyed it then knitted it up..it were lovely;)

did i mention its gorgeous????

Renee' said...

People have made millions perfecting that gaze. You're a natural! Beautiful shawl, too.

Badger said...

Oh pshaw, silly woman. You and the shawl are BOTH gorgeous!

fifi said...

oh, yes. That last photo is excellent in eery way.
You're a supermodel.
And you knit pretty good too.

fifi said...

in EVERY way...

Janet said...

keep the photo I say, you are beautiful and so is your shawl. Your wall is also rather nice too :) I admire it every time you model your knitwear...

kleinzonnetje said...

I love it! The shawl is beautiful and the colour is just the thing to brighten up a cold, grey day.

Knitting Out Loud said...

Yes, absolutely gorgeous! Makes me want to try knitting it.

Jo said...

gorgeous, i say. everything, the colour, the shawl, the thriftiness, the way you write about it, and yes, your superstar photo too :) love it!

said...

wonderful... it looks great on you too:)

said...

wonderful... it looks great on you too:)

sooz said...

Another great shawl - 2 weeks!!!!!!!!! Wow. Perhaps I might have to have a crack. After more than 3 months on the stonewall a little speed would be well received! I tried the string blocking by the way and it worked a treat.

Pixie said...

beautiful beautiful beautiful. the shawl, in two weeks, good golly. and it's wearer/maker. thanks for sharing. am almost inspired to get out a crochet hook.

Fioleta said...

Beautiful! You make shawl wearing look so appealing.

Frogdancer said...

Suse, that is just gorgeous.

I wish I was a shawl person, but I just can't seem to get that elegant drape that SOME PEOPLE get so effortlessly.... even when they're leaping to pose in front of a wall while a self timer is on.

And the colour.... perfect.

h&b said...

Is it sold yet? I *adore it*
I adore the size, the colour, the lacing - just adore !

And I need a haircut too, and I don't look half as fab as you, dammit.

Do NOT delete that last pic - I love it. Maybe you could rekindle your old modelling days and make some Patons moolah on the side ? :)

SmitoniusAndSonata said...

Beautiful ! That really is a very warming red and in another life I'll make myself a shawl just like this . But I see more garter stitch scarves in my near future than lacey shawls .

lisette said...

oh wow! every time i see one of your shawls i get inspired to make one myself - one day i may overcome my fear of lace knitting and make something a quarter or maybe half as lovely as this...

and the colour!!!

zephyr said...

how beautiful.
So glad that you didn't delete that last shot.
Look out...you could have a modeling agency knocking on your door!

pinry said...

oh, you look great! and that shawl is superb. love that it's op-shop yarn, and love that something as prosaic as kool-aid could produce such glorious results.

Marie-Jolie said...

The epitome of loveliness. I recently finished a shawl, and decided--as you did--that longer is better. I love that you used op-shop yarn and dyed it with Kool-Aid. It makes the whole thing even better!

librarygirl said...

Yum. Colour is almost edible.

Leonie Guld said...

Two Weeks!!!!!! God...it would take me YEARS!!! Its Stunning!! Congratulations.

Lesley said...

Wonderful. i think this one is my favourite so far. Now over to Ravelry to check out the details.

Serena said...

Gap-jawed with admiration here. Each time I see one of your projects I immediately want to go make the same thing--but I'm a beginner at knitting, so that would be disastrous! ;)

kmkat said...

So that saying about the silk purse and the sow's ear is absolute rubbish then? Because you appear to have created something wonderful from discards and junky drink mix ;-)

peppermintpatcher said...

A two week shawl and a three second photo - you are a lady of extreme speed.

It looks lovely and I love that it is raspberry and strawberry - makes it all the more delicious!

Laura Jane said...

That shawl is utterly ravishing - I say GO the third ball!

Frugality of that sort does not always pay off, althought you gotta love a country op-shop!

And the wistful far-away look... very effective

GUGAW said...

beautiful, just like dragon wings!

herhimnbryn said...

Beautiful.

eurolush said...

You = Adorable.

Shawl = Killer.

Love it wrapped around your shoulders in the last photo...perfect!

alice c said...

I bow before you O Crafty Goddess.

I feel sure that if you were left alone for a month you could cover the Opera House with hand died knitted lace.

alice c said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jackie said...

Wow! Just gorgeous!!!

M said...

Only two weeks? Man. I've been going for AGES on dad's crocheted blanket. Sometimes the blankets take me two weeks, sometimes two months, sometimes longer. This one I've been crocheting since July and I'm getting concerned it won't be finished by October.

Anyway must stop drivelling.

Your shawls are stunning.

BabelBabe said...

you are so lovely i cant stand it. as is your shawl.

I have about ten rows left on mine but it has been put aside for brainless knitting (knit knit knit, forever and ever, amen, a gajillion rows), the Hogwarts scarves, for my little guys.

it pains me to think of some poor person hand-knitting a sweater and then someone donating said sweater to a thrift store.

kt said...

Nooooo! Don't delete it! The wine was right, we're all glad that you posted it!

It's gorgeous, and I'm totally jealous. You look waaay better than I do when I'm overdue for a haircut, which I also am at the moment.

Isabelle said...

Elegant in the extreme!

Isabelle said...

Elegant in the extreme!

Stomper Girl said...

I was reading through this post and admiring the pictures, all the while thinking I'm going to say something about your excellent knitwear posing & modelling skills, and then you wrote those last few paragraphs about your knitwear posing & modelling skills, and I see it is natural talent and not a skill at all. I am most impressed (also with lovely shawl) and hereby add my name to the list exhorting you to step away from the delete button.

Uli said...

Beautiful. And not just because it's in my favourite colour. I like the larger size.

And those modeling skills are highly impressive.

rachel said...

Very amusing! And lovely shawl. But could you post a photo of welding rods, in situ or not? They are hard to imagine....

Bells said...

oh it's spectacular and I agree with everything you said about it. I'm on my second and know I will make more. Next time I'll do a heavier one too. I've had that in mind for a while.

Stacey said...

The shawl is just gorgeous and you look fab in it.
I do like your wistful gaze into the distance - I wouldn't have believed for a second that you've just jumped into the pic, arranged yourself and the shawl in three seconds.
It's the knitting magazine equivalent of the Opal Man photos where he has the jacket casually slung over the shoulder and he points off into the distance.

shula said...

That is just beautiful.

janet said...

Beautiful (and thrifty!). I wish that my "before the shutter goes off" were even the teensiest bit as good as yours!

tiennie said...

This is such a beautiful color! It's gorgeous on you!

Rae said...

My dear, you are breathtaking in watermelon. I wish I had the knitting perseverance that you have.

RED PEPPER QUILTS said...

Absolutely gorgeous! Love all shawls!

Rita