Tuesday 20 January 2009

There's a hole in my shawl, dear readers...

The tennis started at 11am; Lleyton Hewitt wasn't playing till 2pm. Plenty of time to graft and block!

First the grafting - I had to do it twice; the first time I realised I had eight stitches on the front needle but 10 on the back needle; something was obviously wrong somewhere. The second time was successful and didn't look too bad.

Adam Lindsay Gordon wrote a poem which contained the line: "Life is mostly froth and bubble". I think that describes the Myrtle Leaf shawl very well. Above is the froth and below is the knitted bubble wrap! ;-)

Now the blocking. For Jocelyn, who asked about surfaces for blocking, first I lay out the cutting board, which is 190cm x 100cm [76"x40"], and cover it with a disposable white plastic table cloth. That way the cardboard stays dry but I can still see the grid underneath.
Now thread the rods through. I have never used blocking wires before even though I have had them for almost twelve months. It's a tedious process threading those burred edged rods though acres [so it seems] of lace, isn't it? Finally a bit of a stretch here and some more easing there and the shawl was approximately the size it was supposed to be [it's about 4" short but the correct width]. One good thing about the wires - a lot less pins are needed!!

So, finally, at 1.30, time to have lunch then into the lounge [living] room to check the blocking. Don't want it shrinking or tearing while drying, do we? And then I found it. I know it's hard to see ivory knitting on a white background but I'm sure you can see what I saw to my horror and dismay.
At the moment I don't know how to fix it - but I'm sure I will think of a reasonable solution in time! The wedding is still 11 days away and I'm sure it will just entail a deft hand with an embroidery needle; I'm certainly not going to undo the graft, rip out the border, frog back about 20 rows then try and pick up the stitches. Oh no, there will be some creative embroidery happening when I am calm and less hot! BTW, It got to 40*C [104*F] here again today and although the aircon is set at 24*C [75*F] it's still quite warm! And Lleyton Hewitt lost in five sets! :-(


  1. Holy crap! Do you remember at all when I found a hole in my laceweight pi shawl? It's an awful moment. I feel for you because it's looking breathtakingly beautiful.

    I took to it with an embroidery needle, as you will, and somehow got it to hold together. Now, I'm not even sure I can see where it was - I think the lace is, amazingly, somehow quite forgiving.

    Nearly there Lynne!

  2. Will not write what I said!

    You are amazing at what you do, and you will find a way to fix.

  3. Bugger! That embroidery needle sounds like it might be a saviour though, good luck with getting it to behave nicely.

  4. We all have 'holes' that are mended and they make us more beautiful and this shawl has all the beauty of your love and labor in it-don't look at the hole (which you know you can fix) but look at the whole-you have done amazing work and we are all celebrating with you!

  5. Oh, boy. Talk about an up and down post! The shawl is gorgeous. The hole must've made your heart lurch. You're absolutely right that you will be able to find a good way to fix it with an embroidery needle -- we'll be cheering for you. But honestly, that is one gorgeous shawl!! (And thanks for the shots of the blocking board :) )

  6. Oh yes, you'll definitely be able to fix that, and no-one (well, except us) will be the wiser! Isn't blocking amazing, the way it changes the froth and bubble into something so very different and so lovely.

  7. Go the embroidery needle - it really looks gorgeous! (and onc it's fixed I bet you can't even find it when you look!)


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