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.

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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!

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A Finer Peace

I completed the second sock of my modified Peace Socks pattern on Friday.

Socks070509 204x239 A Finer Peace

When I get a chance, I’ll write up this pattern and post it as a freebie. I think I’ll call it “A Finer Peace.” Why? Because it is knit with fingering weight yarn instead of sportweight, which is what the original pattern is written for. Yes, I do crack myself up on a regular basis.

In other news, I started yet another experimental circular shawl, this one in Ella Rae Lace Merino. The colorway is “The Deep End.”

Yarn070509 240x160 A Finer Peace

The name of this yarn is somewhat misleading, as it closer to fingering weight than laceweight. It’s a 100 gram skein with 460 yards per skein and the stated gauge is 29 stitches and 37 rows to 4 inches on a US 3 (3.25mm) needle. Using a size 0 (2mm) I expect I’d get my usual 8 stitches per inch for socks.

Yarncloseup070509 240x160 A Finer Peace

But I’m knitting lace, and using a US 4 (3.5mm) needle.

Shawl070509 240x160 A Finer Peace

So far, all is well. No leaching of dye, no atrocities. The yarn is quite nice, in fact!

Okay, back to the couch for me. I still can’t shake this viral crud that took hold of me over a week ago, so I have an afternoon of doing very little planned.

Lucy has an afternoon of looking adorable planned.

Lucy070509 240x143 A Finer Peace