My current work in progress:

1. Ashburn, designed by Melanie Berg, knit from Woolfolk Tynd in colorways 6, 7, and 8 on a 4 mm (U.S. size 6) needle.
2. Myriad stealth projects.

Mighty Shawls From Little Edgings Grow

Because I’m geeky that way, I looked up the origins of the phrase “mighty oaks from little acorns grow.” The earliest similar phrase I could find was from my old buddy Geoffrey Chaucer’s Troilus and Criseyde (late 1300s):

“as an ook cometh of a litel spyr”

Did I ever tell you I used to be able to read (and to a certain extent speak) Middle English? And no, it wasn’t during the Middle Ages, it was during graduate school. Which was almost as far back as the Middle Ages.

But I digress.

Behold the little edging:

Edging082909 240x160 Mighty Shawls From Little Edgings Grow

This is the beginning of a shetland-style rectangular shawl. I am knitting it from Jojoland 2-ply cashmere, which is a laceweight with 400 yards per 50-gram skein.

Cashmere083109 240x160 Mighty Shawls From Little Edgings Grow

I love rectangular shawls, but I hate knitting on the edging afterward. Miles and miles of mind-numbing edging — arrrgh!

So I’m employing a mitered-corner technique here.

You start by knitting the bottom left corner — do a provisional cast on and knit the corner using short rows. Then you knit across the bottom border in as many repeats as you need, and do another short row corner for the bottom right. Turn your work, work across those live stitches, pick up stitches along the straight edge of the border repeats you worked, then undo your provisional cast-on and work across those stitches, and Bob’s your uncle!

Here is the etymology of “Bob’s your uncle.”)

Now you are ready to work back and forth across the shawl, working the border along with the body of your shawl. When you get to the top, you do a similar maneuver — work a short row corner, work a border across the top of the body stitches, attaching the border as you work, then work the last corner.

Easy as pie!

Well, not easy as pie to figure out. At least not for me. It took me a bit of winkling to get the corners to work properly.

The shawl is worked in garter stitch and has lace patterning on both right and wrong sides, so that it is continually entertaining to knit. I’m using a US size 3 (3.25mm) needle, so it is a bit slow going. The unblocked gauge is 6 stitches and 8 rows to the inch.

How long will I make it? I have a total of 1600 yards of the yarn, so I’ll either knit until it looks long enough, or til I run out of yarn.

Lucy is no doubt lost in thought — the coming delights of a cashmere kitty blanket!

Lucy083109 240x160 Mighty Shawls From Little Edgings Grow