Monday, January 4, 2010

Lots of Little Lacey Lessons

It is done. It is done. The Celtic Stole, my very first project with laceweight yarn, is finished at last. I may never knit with laceweight again. Love the pattern, but oh, my goodness. Knitting with thread is a whole other world. So . . . here it is --

This is my second stole (y'know, rectangular-type shawl), and I'm realizing that with this shape you get a lot more of the decorative part in the front, unlike the triangles, which usually have their prettiest part draped across the back. The back of a stole is not so interesting.

Both shapes are good, and then, of course, there's circles and half-circles and all sorts of adventures to come. I'm definitely not done with shawls, although a light-to-medium fingering weight yarn may be as thin as I will go in future. Aside from the difficulty in knitting (not to mention tinking), laceweight, once blocked, is almost too drapey.

Anyhoo, I had the fun of learning two new cast-on's for this project. First the invisible cast-on for the start, and then the crochet cast-on for the knit-on border.

I had a slight difference of opinion with the designer as to how the border should be cast on. This is due to my reluctance to break off the working yarn unless absolutely, totally, completely necessary. Other knitters are more carefree about trailing bits of yarn. So, I cast on with my working yarn, adding one stitch to the cast-on number, and then eliminated one row from the beginning. Worked just fine.

It's an amazing pattern, perfectly easy to knit (as long as you pay close attention). There are no nupps or other fancy maneuvers, just basic stitches. And, most importantly, the pattern has not a single mistake, not one, not anywhere. And, oh, by the way, it's FREE. And the chart comes as both a PDF and an Excel spreadsheet. I found the spreadsheet to be quite handy. I could change the color of the grid, increase the font size, cut out just the pieces I was working on -- all sorts of useful stuff.

My hat is off to Sarah Kendra Hughes, who created this amazing pattern and then shared it with the world, asking nothing in return. Huzzah!