(Swatches for 4 shawls I want to knit. Right now.)
- Swatching lace patterns is fun and addicting, and I like fussing with them to get the effect I want. Combine, alter, chart, swatch, refine, repeat.
- Swatching in practice yarn is way better than repeatedly frogging and reknitting your “real” yarn. I switched to some light worsted yarn I had on hand. (White swatches in the picture.)
- Swatching lace with heavier yarn will tell you a lot, but not everything. Swatching with leftover sock yarn is better, if fingering weight yarn is your goal. I wised up and bought a 50g skein of Louet Gems for swatching, because I needed a light color for a design submission. It’s the green ball in the picture, and it’s lovely to work with. I may have to get some more, to knit for reals.
- Beads add lovely weight, drape, and bling to lace. I’m hooked (hah!) on the crochet hook method of adding beads.
- Blocking is magic. (We already knew that, but it’s been reaffirmed, and can’t be said enough.)
- An old black velvet dress makes a great background for a pale lace swatch photo. (No pic, it’s for a design submission.)
- This elastic bind off is way better than the usual chain bind off, for lace that is going to be blocked: K2, * slip left needle into fronts of the 2 worked stitches on right needle and knit them off together through the back loop (like an ssk), K1, repeat from *.
- And last of all: I’m a little obsessive.
PS: I blame Sivia Harding for this trip down the lace rabbit hole. I took her workshop last Sunday, and can’t stop playing with ideas. You can take her class at Twisted next Saturday, March 30. It’s from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. But don’t say I didn’t warn you about possible obsession!
I took at class at Twisted on Saturday, Designing Lace Triangle Shawls with Sivia Harding. Sivia is the queen of lace, and beads. I took a one hour wonder beading class with her at Sock Summit 2009. This class was six times better, because it was a 6 hour class! And there was some beading, too. We learned about basic triangle shawl construction, choosing a pattern, stitch dictionaries, how to chart our lace, swatching, transitioning between lace patterns, edgings, and beads. Whew! I came home inspired, and spent part of this afternoon working on a design.
Alas, it didn’t quite work out to be what I wanted, but I’m not done yet.
I also played with my camera the other morning; Franklin Habit’s class has inspired me to take more pictures. My camera is just a point & shoot Panasonic Lumix; it doesn’t have a very fast lens. I wanted to see if I could get it to play with depth of field. I’m still not quite sure how to make it happen with this camera. (I miss my film SLR…) I just kept playing with macro and zoom until I got these. I loved the way the sun was lighting the flowers of the dandelions, while the ground was still in shade. It looked like fairy lights, just magical.
Somehow weeds look so much better with a little bokeh!
Have you learned any new skills this summer? How are you using them?
I didn’t even open the Single Skein Club package while I was camping; the allure of the ruffle was strong. But I have now opened it so I can show you, gentle reader.
It’s an ingenious lacy scarflet by Sivia Harding. The yarn is Mirasol Tupa which is 50/50 merino and silk, in a deep auburn. It looks almost like chocolate. I love this yarn; I used it for my Hugs and Kisses Cabled Fingerless Mitts. It’s great to knit with.
The bonus this month:
A little scrabble tile Twisted yarn ball pendant.
Sweet! This may be my next project after the ruffle tank is off the needles. We’ll have to see which way my whims turn.
In other news, WordPress changed my theme to Coraline from Cutline, which is being phased out. If you came by and there was nothing on the sidebar, my apologies! Widgets have now been restored. Thanks for visiting!