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On Ravelry there is a group which began in 2010 for people wanting to make 10 shawls in 2010. I’ve bee a member since then, but never have managed to make 10 in ’10, 11 in ’11 and so on. I did have a narrow miss last year, when I achieved 11 in ’12. That was disappointing. The rules are strict, you can’t pass off a scarf no matter how complicated or yarn-consuming as a shawl or stole.

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Last time I wrote about my Honeymeade shawl, in Tunisian lace. The project I am writing about today preceded it but I was somewhat disappointed with it and so I didn’t feel like blogging it.

The thing was, it was made in Knit Picks Palette, a 100% wool yarn. I liked the colour a lot, but had two issues with the yarn itself. First, it is listed in the Ravelry database as a fingering yarn, which I find hard to believe; second, being wool, it needs blocking and reblocking, which daunts the lazy in me.

Anyhow. What you see above is what it looked like after my first attempt at blocking. I was quite unhappy that the eyelets hadn’t opened up to be lacy enough. The shawl is dense. I did love the technique, though, which uses linked stitches turned sideways (making them Tunisian short rows) and decreases and yarnovers to make it lacy. Quite a lot of fun to do. As I doubtless mentioned in my post about the Honeymeade.

See? No holes, Ma!

So I grumbled. But then a friend suggested I should soak the thing overnight so the wool absorbed water and then block it again. Look now.

Better holes

Look! Holes.

I’m a convert. To the extent that soaking and blocking does seem to be effective. But I have a sneaking doubt, given the humid climate I live in, how long before the shawl shrinks back?

Oh, and just see what a difference the right model makes. I found a natural model in my neighbour, who showed off the shawl much better than I could have.

That's how it's done.

That's how it's done.

This is the Dublin Bay Shawl pattern from Aiobhe Ni Shuilleabhain (Rav page).

I’m feeling very chuffed with myself just right now. I finished my latest test crochet, which involved a sideways (pun intended) way of looking at regular crochet. It’s a lovely shawl using lacy interlinked stitches, plus the colour, for once, is harmonious. Take a look.

Doing its thing on the lawn.

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I got my invite for Ravelry yesterday and spent a few hours there browsing and adding some of my projects and stash. In one fell swoop, I managed to lower the tone of the place by an immense quantum 😀 Most of my yarn is acrylic, my projects are odd and my photography is terrible. Let’s hope they don’t throw me out for bringing the site into disrepute! My favourite feature is the hooks & needles database, the result of which you can see in a new page I have ———->

In other news, Cordelia tells me she has received the shipment of some afghan hooks which Michelle was giving away at Good Yarn Karma, and which I asked her to send me care of Cordelia, so she could save on postage. I love reading the posts at GYK, even if I can’t ask for swapping most of the stuff. I think it’s a wonderful idea! Thank you folks of Good Yarn Karma, and thank you Michelle! Hope you have lots of good karma.

The dotty thing of two posts ago has morphed into this:
Anjana's sweater

Yarn: The pink is Bergen, apparently a German yarn (possibly East German) made of WolPryla (mit anderen faserstoffen – with other ingredients). It is showing quite true on my monitor. The purple is Pegasus, also of the same origin. It is less blue than in the picture. Both yarns advise using 2.5 mm needles, but while the pink says “3”, the purple says “2”. Neither has a st/row count gauge indicator. The white is Cactus from Taiwan (why would you name a yarn that?!) with no indication of content, but also advises 2.5 mm. The gauge indicator for this yarn says 32 st/46 rows to 4″/10 cm. All yarns are slightly fuzzy but soft enough.
Hook: Easy Tunisian Hooks N/10mm and M/9mm, Boye K/10.5/6.5mm

Pattern: Loosely based on a Crotiques pattern. I changed st counts, row counts, button bands, and the collar pattern, as well as adding that holey lacy row in the middle. I used a Tunisian double crochet(US) for that. The body was worked in Tunisian knit stitch. Changed colours when I felt I couldn’t go further without compromising on the yarn for sleeves. The button bands and the bottom were worked together in seed stitch (sc (US) in both loops, sc in back loop only and then reverse order for next row) and I quite like how it worked out. To make the collar longer, I added a few rows of sc through both loops on top of the collar area. Instead of poke-through buttons, I plan to put snaps, and use the purple buttons for only aesthetic effect.

Time: About a week.

Size: Hopefully to fit a 6-month niece (cousin’s kid) I’m going to meet in a couple of days. She was a big baby. The size sweater is about 24″ wide and 12″ long, with the sleeves at 8″ long. Her next winter will be obviously when she’s older (a year), so this needs to fit her then.

Extra: #1 I love how neat the raglan shape came out. My knit raglans are never so good.

#2 All three yarns were very grippy. I don’t think I like that. This was true on both the plastic Easy Tunisian hooks as well as the metal Boye. I plan to use the rest of the yarn to make a hat or booties, and will check how they act with my Denises and Pony hooks. Slightly slippery is always better than grippy.

#3 The German yarns say “Altenburger Wollspinnerei” which I think refers to some sort of spinning cooperative. The Bergen also says “50-PAN-f-TDI/50 Wo” which could mean it has some wool content, but I’m not hopeful. The Pegasus says “30 PAN-f-TDI/70 PAN f ” which completely baffles me.

#4 The Bergen yarn says “100 tex x3” while Pegasus has “110 tex x2” which makes halfway sense, because the x3 has 3 strands plied together while the x2 has 2 strands.

#5 Bergen came in a 100g ball of 280m, while Pegasus had 50g to 190m. No size/weight indication on the Cactus.

#6 All this documentation for all-acrylic (probably) yarns is because I didn’t find any information on them when I googled.

#7 Shh! I haven’t yet seamed/sewn in the ends or the buttons/snaps yet. The garment has just been skilfully arranged for the photo session.

I trust you dutifully squinted for the first picture so you didn’t see the boo-boos and ha-has. Now I shall reward you with a close-up of the raglan which also shows the button band, main body and collar up close.
Anjana's sweater

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