When I purchased my electric ballwinder a while back (two years now?) I thought it was a bit of a frivolous purchase. But that is so not the case!
I bought the larger size winder (the link to the exact model I bought is in yesterday’s blog entry) and have not regretted it for a minute. It has adjustable tension, and will wind a ball up to 8 ounces.
Therefore, yes, I can wind an entire skein of Helen’s Laces (1250 yards) into one ball on it. This does save a lot of wear and tear on the old arm.
I am very careful not to twist the skein as I put it on my swift, so that it will come off easily when I turn on the ballwinder. But after that, said ballwinder does all the work — I just stay nearby so that I can switch it off quickly should the process hit a snag.
Is there a standard width that you should shoot for on shawls? I’m getting close to finishing the Os and Vs shawl from Martha Waterman’s Traditional Knitted Lace Shawls, and she says her circle was 34″ across, which seems a bit small to me. Mine looks like it will end up closer to 42-44″ across. How do you know what sizes to shoot for?
It depends on the size of the recipient, and how big you want the shawl to be. Off the top of my head, I think most square shawls range from 54 to 60″ square.
And I think a good rule of thumb for triangle shawls is to make them as wide across the long edge as the recipient is tall. There’s a bit of advice in the Waterman book, btw, that says to make the long edge the same as the recipient’s wngspan, as it were.
Speaking of Shawls
I’m nearing the end of the “body” of the Woodland shawl — soon I’ll be knitting the edging.
(I see my photo stylist got in the shot there.)