Sunday, January 15, 2012

A big shawl

For some time now I've been wanting a big shawl - one that's long enough to drape securely around myself and that's deep at the back to keep me warm. Finally I've achieved it.

Large shawl 4
Shawl 2

It feels as if it has taken me ages to finish this shawl, but in fact I only started it at the end of October and finished the knitting just before Christmas. However, it was a lot of knitting. I didn't have time (or energy) to organise the blocking before I went away in late December, but inspired by this morning's Knitting Guild meeting and the chance to show it off to friends I conquered the blocking yesterday. That's what it felt like: a war, as I pushed and prodded and measured and pinned the shawl into submission across almost all the spare space on my living room floor.

The pattern is Stephen West's Transatlantic Shawl, and I just kept knitting and knitting till I felt it was big enough. Initially I'd bought four 50g skeins of the Rowan 4 ply wool for the solid dark graphite colour, but I needed to go back twice to Calico and Ivy to buy additional skeins to make it large enough. The variegated black and cream yarn is Schoppelwolle Crazy Zauberball where the skeins seem to go on forever. The pattern includes increases on every row at the edges, so the resulting shawl is very wide - and long at the front if I don't wind it around myself.

Large shawl 1

One of the great things about this pattern is its use of texture. I particularly like the contrast between the horizontal garter stitch ridges of most of the shawl and the strong vertical lines of the central slipped stitch pattern.

Large shawl close-up
Large shawl close-up 2

I'm very happy with my shawl, though as it began to grow I was surprised by its proportions...surprised and initially a bit dismayed by its width. But now it's finished I'm really happy to have such long shawl 'tails' to anchor the shawl as I wear it. A very good outcome.

Finally, I'm pleased to have a shawl in shades of grey. Clearly, it will match most of my clothes.

And really finally, thanks to DrK for the pics of me wearing the shawl

16 comments:

Lynne said...

The shawl is gorgeous and a Guild meeting is a really good excuse to finish and show off something so beautiful!

Rose Red said...

It is amazing! Gorgeous and so totally you.

yogaknitdra.com said...

Your shawl is fabulous Lyn and as a fellow fan of the >180cm across shawl criteria, it is exceptionally impressive. I'm in love with the cross design at the back too, giving me more ideas...
So wearable, you'll wonder how you ever did with out it I'm sure!

drkknits said...

this just looks so great on you, and is a properly big shawl, not some fiddly little thing that falls over ones shoulders. i can see you wearing this a lot come winter. such a great pattern. and nice photos! :)

Sally said...

Absolutely gorgeous. I want one!

Yarna said...

It is indeed a stunning shawl! You have such a good eye for selecting just the right yarn for the project.

bells said...

Wow. It's stunning. I love the detail. What a fabulous piece. Well done!

omstreifer said...

Beautiful!!!

travellersyarn said...

I love it - nothing skimpy about that shawl. Love the greys too.

Brendaknits said...

Shades of Grey - matches your clothes, your blog name and your hair.
You couldn't go wrong.

missfee said...

This is just gorgeous Lyn

love how big it is too

Ruby Girl said...

It is beautiful, the pattern looks as it if is weaved like material. Looks great on you.

1funkyknitwit said...

You know I'm going to -> LOVE THIS ! :D
Agreed, the stripes and contrasting texture in the pattern work so well together, whilst the contrasting stripe on the edge sets it of beautifully.
This is so you Lyn and you will wear it to death.

Probably Jane said...

Absolutely gorgeous - I think I would have known it was your work even if it wasn't on your blog if you know what I mean...

All that knitting was well worth it. Now I've once again seen the beautiful things you can do with grey I am tempted to abandon the custard yellow shawl I am in the middle of knitting!

Jan said...

This is beautiful. I've just come back to mine which has been neglected for possibly four months.

Theoretically I'm at the place of doing the edging. However, I have five more 50 gm skeins of each colour so will keep going for a while.

Love the patterning in it.

Moorecat said...

Looks like a new staple in your wardrobe.

Did you add the "buttonholes"?