Tuesday, July 08, 2003

I have more finished knitted items to display. It's been a good week for finally finishing things (though many projects remain in many stages of incompleteness) and for photographing them.

This is another in the set of shawls that was woven on the same warp, but this time the weft is a jade green rather than mushroom beige. I liked the shawl much more after it was done but I didn't leave enough warp ends for a satisfying built-in fringe so I looked around for other treatments for the ends, where I had to cut across the warp threads. I found an article in issue 104 of Handwoven by Kim Marie Bunke with a beaded fringe of similar type -- a set of dangly columns of seed beads, terminating in a large bead. In Bunke's shawl the large bead was a leaf shape, but I chose new jade beads which matched the colour of the shawl perfectly. The beads are a little noisy clinking against each other (maybe I should have made the columns of seed beads staggered lengths to minimize that) but even the sound makes me happy. BTW the fiber is Zephyr Wool-Merino.
shawl -- closeup

My next item I recently reknit the collar (so I wouldn't bend my glasses putting it on) and I think I'm satisfied now although I may redo the waist someday as it's really too bulky. This started as beautiful possum yarn which my SO brought back from New Zealand for me (without prompting!). It feels lovely, warm and thick. I swatched it up a bit and realized it would make terrific cables because the nature of the yarn makes very well-defined cables -- they pop out in relief with strong shadows. Somehow the yarn fuzziness even seems to make the cables even better defined, rather than obscuring the pattern. So I looked around for any aran pattern in the right gauge, and the closest I could find among the books/magazines I owned was a Balmoral Tweed pattern by Kim Hargreaves in The Kim Hargreaves Collection. I modified the pattern several ways:

  • by omitting some of the side patterns to make it less wide (fewer stitches across)
  • by doing a simple short collar rather than a roll or turtleneck collar
  • by doing plain cast-on sleeve cuffs immediately into the cable pattern, no rib cuff
  • by doing a fold-up edge at the bottom waist of the sweater, which I may later take off as it's too bulky.
The inset in the image below is from a fuzzy image I took without flash, because I thought the flash made the yarn look greyer than it really is.

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