Monday 7 April 2008

Entrelac blanket progress ... or is that "conclusion"?

You may remember that I attended an entrelac workshop last month. To put my new found skills into practice, I decided to make a blanket for Wrap with Love in an entrelac style - squares of 25 small 10 stitch x 20 row squares in garter stitch alternating with plain 50 stitch x 100 row squares in garter stitch. That, dear blog friend, is a total of 140,000 stitches [as is normal for the Wrap With Love afghans - 28 squares or a total of 70in x 40in].

I set myself a goal to have the knitting finished by 18th April, when we have Part II of our entrelac workshop at the Knitters' Guild meeting. So far I have knitted 80,000 stitches, so in 12 days I have 60,000 stitches to knit [or 5,000 stitches a day]. I'm on holidays - unless TAFE calls me for some relief work this week - but it's still a big ask!

Yesterday, I knitted 9,400 stitches and my shoulders are a bit stiff today [don't tell the health professionals who are looking after my shoulders]. Actually, my right shoulder is really sore. I was using a KnitPicks cable needle so the weight of the blanket was on my lap and on my legs. I have a very close knitting style; I keep my elbows by my side and can knit easily on crowded public transport. But, believe it or not, knitting is hard on the shoulders; partly because knitters tend to slouch [especially me] and partly because the muscles attached to the shoulders [biceps and triceps, for example] are involved in the knitting, whether it seems like it or not. I've been told this on separate occasions by my sports medicine specialist, my physiotherapist and my massage therapist; all of whom tell me to limit knitting to small amounts of time! Sometimes I just get carried away!!!

The blanket is growing but, of course, it's getting heavier and heavier and so every stitch seems slower and slower. I have learnt to knit in both directions so that I don't have to turn the work around - that's okay when doing purl garter stitch; my knit-in-reverse [left to right] is slow but okay. But, it's sooooooo slow when doing knit garter stitch - my purl-in-reverse is painfully slow! Sometimes I push on, especially on the short rows, just to get the practice and therefore build up speed, but sometimes I just get jack of it and turn the work as needed - usually on the 50 stitches rows!

It's better for me to be able to knit in the future [I clearly remember five weeks of no knitting!]. I cannot knit today and it's my own fault for knitting for too long yesterday. The weight of the blanket, in spite of the cable needle, is pulling me down. Not knitting today means that I will have to knit even more stitches every other day to reach my goal in the given time frame - a super-human effort. So, today I made a decision; a cot-size blanket [120cm - 40inches - square] is useful and will save my shoulders! Now, there's a load off - figuratively and literally!!

All I have to do is sew in the myriad of ends that come with entrelac knitting.


  1. sounds like you have to really carefully manage your knitting time, Lynne. That's sad, isn't it? But better in the long run, as you say.

    I'm intrigued to see the entrelac blanket! It's such a foreign concept to me. I really must try it some time!

  2. Oh Lynne, I'm hanging to see the entrelac. Do we get to see the work in progress or do we have to wait to the end. I saw an entrelac scarf once and was instantly in love with the style, but it looked far too scary for me. Take care with the shoulder, you'll know how far to push it (or otherwise). Or will you? hmmmm, we do tend to do 'just another few rows' dont' we?


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