Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Knitting Lace

(Just to clarify, above photo is not my work. More info below)

My blog has been quiet lately, but my life has NOT! In the last few weeks two college boys have come home and my oldest daughter has graduated from high school. That means I have successfully home schooled 4 of my kids from the very beginning all the way through. Only 3 more to go! My hubby says that if you added together the 12 grades I taught each of those 4 kids plus the 10, 8 and 3 grades of the three not yet graduated that would be a total of 69 years worth of school I have taught (and we won't even bother counting kindergarten)! I'm exhausted just thinking about it!

I have had something new and a bit challenging on my needles lately: knitted lace! The photo above is from the Rose Leaf Trellis Shawl/Wrap pattern by Janet Barton. It is available for FREE on Ravelry.

I have knit lace stitch patterns before, for example, the simple feather and fan pattern that is on the border of the Multnomah shawl. (Pattern available for free at Hello Knitty.)

I recently knit this for my mum and sent it to her for Mother's Day.

However, I have never actually knit with lace weight yarn. The fiber I am using is called "Merino Lace" by Skacel. How strangely different it feels! The yarn is thin, like thread, but it does not have the body or weight or drape of thread. It is light and airy and it takes some getting used to.

Here is a picture of what it looks like on the needles:

Not too attractive, is it? But that is part of the magic of knitted lace. It looks very unimpressive on the needles, but when you block it, your hard work shows up and you have a thing of beauty.

Here is my work stretched and pinned out a bit to give an idea of what it will look like when it has been finished and blocked:

Sorry to say, finishing will probably be a while from now...I am pretty slow at knitting lace!

So, every now and then I whip up another dish cloth just so I can feel I've finished something. :-)

Oh, and by the way. Should you want to join me on my lace knitting adventure, there is a knit-along group on Ravelry working through the Rose Leaf Trellis Shawl/Wrap pattern together. Feel free to join us!


BusyB said...

how lond does this take you!!! amazing work!

Sarah said...

69 school year--WOW! You have my new found respect :D What a personal accomplishment. And the lace is going to be dead gorgeous.

MicheleStitches said...

I am a bit embarrassed to admit that it takes me close to 10 minutes per row. The pattern is an 8 row repeat, so each set of leaves represents over an hour of knitting time. I hope to get faster as I get more used to knitting with lace-weight yarn.

Jules said...

I was thinking how pretty it looks on the needles. Not sure why you thought it looked unattractive. I can identify with it taking a long time to knit a row. I tend to be a slow knitter but then I usually only knit in the car when travelling. I really need to pull out the wool I bought to knit scarves for my granddaughters and get them done before winter is over. But it's such a 'sticky' wool that I'm not enjoying it as much as I should.

Unknown said...

You are one amazing woman!

Robin said...

I love your blog :) The pictures you have taken are so clear and perfect. What kind of camera do you use?
I restarted my Rose Leaf Shawl yesterday because the variegated Skacel lace I was using hide all the lace stitches. So I am using a bright pink lace yarn and its looks so much better.. Thanks for plugging the Raverly group too. I love running it, you guys are so much fun.
After reading your blog, I think I will pick up knitting dish clothes again. have a great day.. Robin

MicheleStitches said...

Robin, I use a Canon PowerShot SX100 IS. I posted on my blog about it when I bought it:

A few tricks I have found is to use natural light as much as possible and avoid using the flash whenever you can. Also, I have Picasa, which is a free software for photo editing. I don't edit my photos much, but sometimes I do...but only to try to adjust for color accuracy or clarity.


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