Friday 1 February 2013

Delicious Test Knit

I am going to share with you the project that has kept me away from all other knitting for the last couple of weeks.  It is the Rainstorm Shawl, designed by GiddyDavies.  I saw the original shawl in my friend's activity stream on Ravelry and complimented the designer.  She then invited me to test knit it, and I really couldn't refuse the opportunity to knit such a gorgeous and unusual shawl.

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The shawl is knit in two pieces.  The first piece is the top section, which is started from side and worked across.  The second piece is then picked up along the edge and knit downwards.

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The top section of the shawl involves a LOT of twisted stitches.  This portion is a 1x1 rib, where the knit stitches are knit through the back loop on the right side, and the same stitches are purled through the back loop on the wrong side.  It makes for a prominent ribbing, but it is quite hard work and time consuming.  However, I think it was worth it.

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The top of the shawl is gently curved using infrequent short row shaping.  It makes the shawl a crescent shape, so it sits nicely round the neck.

The second part of the shawl, flies off the needles, in comparison to the twisted stitches in the first section.  I really loved the lace in the second chart.  The lace is such a fun shape.

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The lace has points with a slight curve to them, which is what makes it so interesting, but not difficult, to knit.  At the end of the simple lace chart, there is a pretty beaded cast off, which is not mandatory!  However, I think the beads really make this shawl.

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I bought the beads from Highly Strung Beads.  I've never ordered from them before, but someone recommended them on a blog I can't remember.  I was pleased with the beads I got, and thought they were a good match to the photograph on the website.  The ones I got were these, and I bought three tubes.  I only needed part of the third tube, but two tubes were not enough.  I'm so pleased with the way they blend with the yarn.

You may have guessed that the yarn used in this shawl is from BabyLongLegs, my favourite indie-dyer.  It is Perfection Sock, in the Stingray colourway.  This yarn is pure silk, and has a lovely sheen, but is isn't overly shiny.  It's hard to describe, but it has a very slightly matte finish.  The drape of this yarn, combined with the beads, makes for a very elegant shawl.

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It hangs beautifully and makes me excited about knitting with the lace weight version of this yarn that I have in my stash.

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As soon as this pattern is released I will link up to it, in this post, as I'm sure there will be plenty of you who want to knit it.  It is, after all, very beautiful.  In fact, I have decided to keep this shawl, even though I don't really have any occasion that I could wear it to.  I love it too much, and spent so much effort on it, I can't part with it.  I think it would be perfect to take on holiday though, as it would be a lovely cover up to put around your shoulders as the evening arrives, for a meal out, after wearing a strappy top earlier in the day.

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