Friday, April 24, 2009

boneyard shawl

Boneyard Shawl
By Stephen West

This simple triangular shawl is a great project for traveling or while relaxing at home. Once you get started, it is easy to memorize the construction of this cozy garment.

I worked this shawl in a DK weight tweedy wool yarn, but it would look lovely in any weight or fiber (bulky, fingering, striped, variegated, cotton, silk, etc…) I like to knit with a larger than recommended needle size for the yarn on this shawl because I get the most out of a yarn’s yardage. A looser fabric also allows for excellent drape.

Yarn: Rowan Rowanspun DK, colorway #748, 3 skeins (654 yards)

Needles: US 8, 32” circular

Notes: The shawl increases from the cast on stitches and ends at the shawl’s point with a garter stitch edge. The first and last 2 stitches of every row are knit while 4 yarn overs are added every other row (a yarn over at each end and a yarn over on each side of the center or “spine” stitch). As the shawl grows, a ridge is added every 12 rows to create extra textural interest and a simple garter stitch border ties everything together.


CO 5 sts

Set up row (WS): K2, P1 (mark this center stitch by placing a marker on it or a removable marker on each side of it), K2

Row 1 (RS): K2, yo, K1, yo, K2

Row 2 (WS): K2, yo, P3, yo, K2 (this is the only WS row where you increase with yo’s)

Row 3 (RS): K2, yo, knit to center stitch, yo, K1, yo, knit to last 2 sts, yo, K2

**Row 4 (WS): K2, purl to last 2 sts, K2

Repeat rows 3 and 4, creating a stockinette stitch fabric with garter stitch edges.

**On every 12th row (on the WS) knit the entire row instead of purling to form the ridges.

Continue knitting until shawl reaches about 2 inches less than desired finished size.

Keeping the yarn over increases going on every RS row, Knit all stitches on the RS and WS rows, making the garter stitch border. (Remember to allow enough yarn for the garter stitch border because with the large number of stitches at the end, the long rows use a lot of yarn.)


After the border is the desired length, bind off all stitches and weave in the ends. (I used one of my favorite flexible bind offs, Elizabeth Zimmerman’s sewn bind off, and I was very pleased with the finished edge.)

Block the finished shawl if you wish and enjoy!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

felted things and malabrigo

A lot of knitting has been going on, but not a lot of typing due to an incident involving a bowl of soup and my computer keyboard. I can still access the internet and my mouse works along with half of my keys, but I have to click letters on my screen to make up for the other half of my keys that don't function. I'm waiting until I'm back home to get it looked at. Fortunately, I don't have to type many papers this semester.

Anyway, I've been knitting constantly and completing several projects. Most recently, I've felted a couple things.

Last night I just added the lining and button/closure to a felted bag.

I used Cat Bordhi's Moebius Sling Bag - Summer Weight pattern as a guideline, but I cast on about 20 extra stitches to the strap and 10 extra stitches to the body of the bag. The strap also isn't a moebius.

I used a few skeins of Classic Elite Skye Tweed (marmalade) and some leftover Madil Loden in a pickley grellow color that I got when I was in Italy last summer. The Skye Tweed took several hot washes to felt for me. I put it through a couple cycles in a top loader washing machine and a few times in a front loader. I've never had a wool that took that much washing to felt. It turned out fine though.

I sewed some quilting fabric together with a machine and then attached the fabric to the felted bag by hand with a tapestry needle and some Noro Shinano. Then, I just made a simple i-cord loop to fasten around a wooden button.

It's the perfect size for a small knitting project like a hat.

I also recently made a basket/bag type thing for Klose Knit out of Malabrigo in the Cadmium colorway.

It's been a little while since I worked with Malabrigo worsted and I've fallen in love with it again.

After making that felted basket I got a couple skeins of Malabrigo at Knit 1 in Chicago to work on a pattern of mine. I came up with a reversible hat idea last summer, but I'm finally perfecting it and starting to get the pattern written up.

I'll put the free pattern on here and on my Ravelry page in the next few weeks or so. The hat looks great playing with two different yarn as well as a solid color.

I'm excited to see other people knit this hat up in different colors.

My needles have been busy with hats in March. I worked with the new Noro Chirimen yarn and whipped up this hat about a week ago.

It's a wonderful cotton blend with gorgeous colorways. I'll be able to wear it in the spring and summer.

I'll still be knitting with wool over these next couple seasons, but I also want to work with some cooler yarns as well. Do you all have any favorite spring/summer yarns. What projects do you find yourself working on in warmer months or what to do you plan on knitting during spring and summer?