Haps & Shawls 

Having been very tentative about trying to knit a shawl, I decided to attend Veera Valimaki’s class on “Shawls and Shapes” at the Edinburgh Yarn Festival in March.  She was amazing and during her class she broke down different shawl shapes into very simple 4-row patterns!

With newly found confidence, I decided to start a v-shaped shawl using her basic pattern; this shape being perfect to wear with yoked jumpers and cardigans, and as a cycling scarf to keep the back of my neck warm!  I added a mix of stocking stitch and garter stitch blocks to the basic pattern to create a slightly more interesting texture.  I decided to knit the shawl using a skein of 4-ply Titus Goddess in Filey.  The result has been well worn and is much needed with the unpredictable spring weather!  In fact, the result was so well used that I decided to knit a second v-shaped shawl in some leftover Blacker Yarns Gotland DK wool.  Not having enough of one colour for a whole shawl, I added a paler band to the edge.  Again, the shawl has been well worn!

So, now for the big challenge: a Shetland hap.  As I’d loved Veera’s class, I decided to knit her 3/4 Hap for the KnitBritish Hapalong that started on Friday 10th April.  Again, I decided to use 4-ply Titus, in Coal, Crucible and White Rose.  I’m ridiculously pleased with result, and cannot wait for the right occasion to wear it!

      

Epistrophy Cardigan

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I have at last finished Kate Davies Designs wonderful Epistrophy cardigan.  The pattern can be found in her recent book of patterns, “Yokes”. The pattern suggested using Toft Ulysses DK, a luxurious British wool but I wanted to use a “stickier” i.e. a hairier, coarser wool which would be easier to steek.  So, I chose Blacker Yarns gorgeous Gotland DK.  It’s a beautiful, soft wool from the Gotland sheep but has enough coarseness to be easy to steek.

After knitting a tension swatch, I decided on 3.75mm needles for the body work, and 3.5mm for the ribs.  I’ve selected a few photos showing the steeking process.  The first photo shows me crocheting a leg of the middle stitch to its neighbouring leg. After a double chain up each side of the middle stitch, I cut up the centre to form a cardigan from a jumper.  Not for the faint hearted! Finally, the two front bands were knitted and buttons attached.

Reviewing the project, I would firstly say that I probably knitted too large a size: overestimated how much I’d eaten over Christmas!  Secondly, I should have increased a needle size when knitting the colourwork yoke section.  If I knitted the cardi again, I would increase my needles to a size 4mm for just the patterned section. But, otherwise, a very satisfying knit using a great pattern and beautiful Gotland wool.