Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Grow, baby, grow!

So, I'm quite happy to report, I've finished knitting the qiviut shawlette! It's sitting on my shoulders, keeping me just warm enough in our air-conditioned house. Being the tropical bird that I am, I find 79 degrees a little cold sometimes, and the shawl provides the perfect amount of warmth. Not to mention, I love the way the beads look. Inspired by Abby from Stringtopia, I added 2 color beads to the lace. To be entirely truthful, I added 2 styles of beads - clear, iridescent beads and smaller red, iridescent beads. The clear beads look like little flecks of ice trapped in the lace and the red beads add a spot of warm, rich color to the fabric. But let me show you what I'm talking about.

That would be the shawl before blocking. It never ceases to amaze me what a leap of faith one takes when knitting lace. Lace knitting almost always comes off the needles as ugly, scrunched up, and horrible. Honestly, you can barely see the beads in there. That tiny things was scarcely 26 inches wide by 12 inches long, and ugly to boot.

But then you introduce the magic of blocking.

All of a sudden, the shawl grows tremendously. I wound up with a shawlette that's 46 inches wide by 22 inches long. The magic torture of blocking brings out something beautiful. Because, let's be honest, I'm stretching this baby like the rack went out of style 5 centuries ago. And yet, the nature of wool and other animal fibers is to stretch and hold once pinned precisely into place, like a fuzzy metaphor for achieving personal growth. You go through this difficult series of patterns, which you can't appreciate until the very end, where you're stretched to your very limits. Then, and only then, can you see the beauty of the whole experience, blocked out for the world to see. It's a funny thing, growth, because I'm always whining, kicking, and screaming until the very end. Perhaps that's why I like knitting so much lace, to remind me that there's a reason for all of the difficult patterns.


llamaleader said...

Its beautiful

knitwit said...

Thank you! I really enjoyed knitting it.

Welcome to Crazytown, where my friends have proclaimed me queen. Why did they do that you ask? For some reason, there's very little that I fear about knitting. Hmm, a dress in laceweight done in lace knitting written by vogue? Sounds great! I have very few inhibitions when it comes to knitting, and that sometimes ends disasteriously. Apparently, other people think this signifies a level of crazy that only the royalty can attain. Follow along with my escapades as I dive head first into all sorts of insane techniques and projects without much more than an "Oh! That looks pretty, I can make it!"

Those will probably be my famous last words.