My current work in progress:

Seaforth designed by Alice Starmore, knit in British Breeds 5-ply Guernsey Wool on US 3 needles.


Summer of Lace Button Voting

It’s time to cast your vote for your favorite “Summer of Lace” button!

The 14 finalist buttons are viewable here in a pop-up window. Which one do you like the best?

(P.S. Is your pop-up blocker over-zealous? Here are the buttons in a full-size browser window.

Aren’t they wonderful? I haven’t decided which one I’m going to use yet.

Regardless of which buttons wins, you are welcome to download and use any button that strikes your fancy on your own blog.

(Don’t know how to download a button to use? Click here for a great explanation!)

The button that has the most votes by Sunday June 12 at noon EST, will win its creator a yarn prize.

Deborah Newton Shawl

I am coming down the home stretch on the knitting of this sucker! I am into the last repeat of the patterns, so the end is in sight.


My goal is to graft it together tomorrow evening, and block on Sunday afternoon. As soon as I have it grafted, I’ll get started on the Tina shawl. I can’t let L-B get too far ahead of me . . . ๐Ÿ˜‰

What Qualifies as Lace?

“Knitted lace is constructed from a single thread manipulated to form a looped openwork fabric – a development from functional knitting, which was probably practised as early as the 12th century.”

I found this definition of knitted lace at

Do you think you’d like to knit lace but are intimidated by the thought of tiny, wicked-sharp needles and yarn the diameter of sewing thread? Fear not the lace! Lace can be knitted on any size needles with pretty much any yarn. Some of my favorite lace shawls are the ones I knitted with fingering or sportweight yarn on US size 6 or larger needles. Sometimes I will take a pattern for a shawl that calls for laceweight yarn and size 3 needles and use fingering weight yarn and size 5 needles, because I want a larger shawl. Check out the lace I’ve knitted — there’s a link to some of my lace projects from my knitting gallery page. The majority of the shawls there are knitted using US size 6 needles.

Try a small project to start, a lace scarf for example. A lot of people are currently knitting and loving Susan’s beautiful Branching Out Scarf from Knitty. That would be a great way to get your feet wet! You can make it this summer and have a head start on your holiday gifts. Or, if you’re like me, you’ll just keep it for yourself. Heh heh.



  1. Huw-whee. Just had a head-spin & was back in 1975 with my brown cordoroy flairs & chocholate brown/ tan/ dusky pink pumps.

  2. Love the buttons, and I’m loving the lace! Can’t wait to see the Tina shawl come to life.

  3. Hi Wendy,

    A famous NZ lace knitter – Margaret Stove – said there is a difference between knitted lace and lace knitting. She also described the difference, but I’ll have to go back to the library to actually quote her, but it goes along the lines of.. lace knitting is what we are doing with our shawls ie using increase and decrease to create lace-like open work, usually with the wrong side being purl. Knitted lace is where you use cotton and fine needles and usually both the right side and wrong side have a lace pattern. There is greater detail to that definition which I don’t care about really, because I’m just dang happy to have finished a lace shawl!

  4. T. Leary says:

    I just took a couple microdots about 1/2 hour ago, and my favorite is number 15. I mean, THE COLORS! Uh, oh, I’m having a bad trip; a real bummer. Damn, I hope I’ve still got that bottle of niacin to help me mellow out…

  5. I fear not the lace! I need a new project these days. Alace project sounds delightfully saucy.

  6. Wendy, I love how you make things (like knitting lace) so UNscary!

  7. Do we post our votes here, or email them to you?

  8. What a bunch of great buttons! I must appologize for being oblivious earlier and totally missing your contest call. I should have known you’d cover all the bases!

  9. No name says:

    Vote for me!!!!eleventyone!!! My button to win!

    (no I won’t tell you which number – that’d be cheating)

    Yes I know I’m silly, sorry Wendy. I just couldn’t help myself.

  10. Repeat after me:This is not a race…this is not a race…. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Love the buttons! You have such talented readers!

  11. The buttons were all great! I had to vote for one that got the lettering right; that seemed to me more evocative of the sixties than even the tie-dye or psychedelic colors.

    I just finished Branching Out, and it was a great lace intro. No need for stitch markers, and I was able to memorize the pattern FINALLY by the end of it. :-\ It’s a gift for a friend — good thing I have enough yarn to make myself one, too! ๐Ÿ™‚

  12. What happened to the voting thingy? I’m at work now and it’s totally disappeared.

    (No, I wasn’t going to vote twice!!)

  13. Hi! Just had a peek at your lace knitting page. Wow…Love the Irish Diamond Shawl…the really big one. How long did that take? How much yarn is that? Do you wear it often? The shape looks so comfy…like it would stay on your shoulders better than some shawls do. (and the colour…I’m gushing now and I’ve said too much!) Your knitting rocks!

  14. I’ve got my button and several lace projects. It’s going to be hard to NOT knit lace this summer.

  15. Yay Lace!! I mentioned you on my blog yesterday Wendy, and I chose my favorite button (#12!!) and added it to my sidebar…ready for all lace, all summer!!

  16. am I missing something? How do I see the buttons to vote on??

    Kathy in Mpls

  17. The Flower Basket Shawl in the Fall 2004 Interweave Knits is a fairly easy introduction to lace. I knit it out of Debbie Bliss Cathay for a nice summer shawl. And I have to put in a plug for Polly’s Kiri shawl at – another shawl that responds very well to yarn substitutions if the mohair scares you.

  18. Love the buttons, though some were hard to read. I’m kind of surprised there wasn’t at least one with a lace background.

  19. NOW you post suggestions on lace for beginners. I am printing out Branching Out, and going to hunt for my Knitters with the Flower Basket shawl, but of course not before I ordered the Pattern and Kidsilk for Birch. I hope it is easy enough, or I’ll have to backtrack and start with Branching out. While it is a public service, it would be helpful if you or someone could compile a beginner friendly list of patterns, links so that we newbies can participate in the summer of lace….


  1. In Stitches says:

    This and that

  2. Vote for Me! ::giggle::

    I made it to the finalists of Wendy’s “Summer of Lace” button contest! Go vote for me, I’m #12 ๐Ÿ˜‰ Been knitting on socks for my friend Dorris using a set of 3mm ebony DPNs, and I really like them….