Monday, October 25, 2010

The Multnomah Shawl

This summer, my friend Gail was surfing the net looking for shawl patterns & came up with this jewel: The Multnomah Shawl. It's a little shawlette made with just one 100g skein of sock wool, & hers came out so beautifully I had to make one myself.

I have been knitting shawls for quite a few years, & have not only designed my own shawls but taught workshops on how to design your own shawl (not to blow my own horn, but to add perspective :). This pattern is quite lovely & the addition of the lace occurs quite naturally, just when you're ready for a bit of a challenge, after knitting along mindlessly in garter for a while. I changed only one thing in the pattern, which was to make the edge increases M1 rather than "knit through front & back of loop", because I really prefer the look of the "make 1" increase.

I made this one in KnitPicks Stroll tonal, Spruce colour, & I had to use a size #2 needle to make gauge (down 2 or 3 sizes from what was suggested). Although I love the look of Feather & Fan (the name of the lace used in this shawl) it's one of those lace patterns that I find easy to mess-up if I'm not paying attention. I found this out the hard way a few years ago when I used it as the pattern for an enormous handspun stole- I worked very hard on that shawl, with all the ripping, until I got the clue: add markers between the repeats of lace, so if I messed up, I knew much sooner & only had to rip back a repeat or so's worth of stitches rather than the whole darn thing. I did the same on this shawl & was glad I did!

A new experience with this shawl was that I have never really just cast-off a shawl edge, but usually crochet loops or  make knitted-edgewise lace for a stretchy, blockable edge. I used a #4 needle for the cast-off, so the edge would be loose, and although you can't really block sock wool very much (thanks to the nylon content), I blocked it anyway for a finished look.

This shawl will be a gift, mostly because Christmas is coming (!) and I don't need another shawl... but I do need presents to give! I think the next one (it took 6 weeks to make only because I was working along very desultorily, having loads of other projects laying about) will be my own version, with a different lace edging. It's a quick-to-make gift and, as I mentioned at the top, really pretty!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Lisa its Gail and I love your shawl! I was going to say we should go out for lunch and wear our matching shawls but I see you are giving this one as a gift to some lucky recipient.