Sunday, October 19, 2008

Autumn Entrelac Extravaganza

I finally finished my Autumn Entrelac Shawl. I did it in the M04, Grape and Rose colorway. Hard to tell just what color it IS from the photos, as they vary widely, though shot at the same time, in the same place, with the same camera. Here's a link to the yarn, though the color isn't exactly as it looks there, either. It's more of a burgundy with lighter and darker subtle variations.

Here's a close up of the stitches, but keep in mind the color is much darker than this picture indicates. This wasn't my first entrelac project, but the only other thing I'd tried before was a dishcloth. So this was definitely the largest! Once I got the hang of the pattern, it went quickly and with a minimum of fuss. I was unable, in my tiny bedroom, to get far enough back from the shawl to get the whole thing into the photo, and I don't possess a dress form to artfully drape it over, so you'll just have to imagine what the whole thing looks like.

I made a couple of changes to the pattern. First, I was lucky enough to see a finished sample shawl in person in my LYS (The Woolery) and more than that, to try it on. I decided I'd like mine a little wider at the top, and since you start at the top and work down to the point, that meant measuring and taking an educated guess how many more triangles to knit on the first row. I did 28 instead of the 25 called for and it came out perfectly for me.

Second, I didn't like the idea of knitting the edging separately and then joining it to the shawl in the last row. Why, you may ask? Because I'd heard from others making this shawl that they had trouble, the edging came out to be too short, and they had to frog it and start over. Since I was increasing the size of the shawl, it would be an even more difficult task to figure out how long to make it. I could have measured, swatched, multiplied, then cast on and hoped it was right. But I took the easy road. Well, the somewhat easier road. I decided to pick up the stitches all along the border and, in effect, knit the border backward. It worked out quite well, I had plenty of stitches to go around, and it ended up with a nice ruffle to it.

The original pattern calls for ten balls of the Jojoland Rhythm yarn. I used ten on the shawl, and three more on the edging. So be warned: if you do what I did, you'll need 30% more yarn! But it's worth it. I have a lovely, comfy, warm shawl to keep me toasty throughout the winter, and just in time. Lows in the 20s tonight. Yikes!