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Castle Ness Shawl

Pattern: Dover Castle Shawl by Judy Marples

Yarn: Belle Epoque Silk Sock in Loch Ness approx. 63 grams

Needles: 3.75 mm / US 5

This shawl was my mother’s Christmas gift this year. I had originally decided to knit her a pair of socks with this yarn but coming off the Falling Leaves socks I couldn’t really face knitting more so I settled on this beautiful shawl.

The pattern is really well written, knits up quite fast and I really enjoyed knitting it. The silk content in the yarn gave it a beautiful sheen and a heaviness that made knitting with it heavenly. When I started I was a little worried that the variegation in the yarn would hide or distract from the beautiful lace but I’m pleased to say that it doesn’t. I plan on knitting another at some point in a subtle variegated yarn.

This pattern was also number 8 on my 10in2010 list and the last project I completed from that list.



My Ishbel

Pattern: Ishbel by Ysolda Teague

Yarn: J.C. Rennie Supersoft Cashmere in Lisaa (046) approx. 43 grams

Needles: 4 mm / US 6

This pattern has become like the secret handshake of knitters and I was very excited to start knitting it. I bought this yarn over a year ago from Di Gilpin in St Andrews. I thought I would need a second ball so I popped by when I returned at the end of the summer to pick up another however I used less than one ball for this shawlette. The yarn has a lovely heathery look to it and a slight variation in colour. I’m not sure if this is actually yarn from their machine knit line which seems to contain more lanolin then their hand knitting line, though the yarn had a very sheepy feel to it. For some reason knitting with it took me back to my week long holiday in Scotland’s north west Highlands, a land of sheep and hills and fog which I loved beyond measure.

The pattern is very well written as can be expected from Ysolda, the lace repeats where easy to remember and with a concentrated knitting effort this piece could probably be completed in a day or two in a push. Before blocking the finished piece seems a bit small but I’m sure it will grow and the yarn will soften some with blocking.

I’m very excited to be able to wear this, a mark of a knitter these days. This was another 10 in 2010 project. I decided to finish the piece specifically on 11 August in celebration of my two year Ravelry anniversary, almost like a gift to myself. I don’t know if I plan to knit another but it will definitely remain on the books as a last minute gift knit or if I really want another one. I would be interested in doing a small/large hybrid or one in lace in the future.

My current project since I finished the Leyburn socks last month (which took entirely too long to finish) is turning this:

J.C. Rennie Supersoft Cashmere

Into this:

LyndaLee’s beautiful Ishbel for illustration purposes

I’ve finished the stockinette and ABA sections. The sections go pretty fast so I have faith that I should finish it up soon. It’s actually a pretty quick knit and the lace repeats are pretty easy to remember.

Cryptic Swallowtail

Pattern: Swallowtail Shawl by Evelyn A. Clark

Yarn: Plymouth Yarn Baby Alpaca Lace in Gray (401) approx. 34 grams

Needles: 3.5 mm / US 4

I’ve knit a few lace projects so far and really wanted to tackle a shawl. The swallowtail pattern is very popular and looked like a lot of people started with it as a first shawl. It was a bit tricky at the beginning but overall the pattern was very nice to knit and the one mistake I did make it almost impossible to see (I started a row 1 when I was on row 3). The nupps were a bit of a challenge but I managed by using a small dpn to lift the stitches to get my needle underneath. This project also was one of my 10 in 2010 so that’s 4 done. Overall I really enjoyed the pattern, the lace wasn’t as difficult as I thought it would be, after a while you start to see the pattern and how it works. To block I used cotton string as a rule and tried to pin it out in that shape; it is amazing how the pattern shows up so beautifully after blocking. I’m not sure if I will ever knit this particular shawl again though if I do I will make it bigger though I will definitely knit more lace in the future.

As for the name, when I went to go take pictures I noticed how it looked a bit like a moth or butterfly trying to blend in with the rocks it was on and so I called it my Cryptic Swallowtail.

Flickr Photos