Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Forest Canopy Shawl

Another AMAZING lace knit! I can't believe my luck. I may have enjoyed this even more than the Icarus Shawl...if that's possible. It could be because I was able to use my own handspun for it, but I think it's mostly because the pattern is written like a dream. I not only finished this as quick as a wink, but I actually craved knitting it. I'd pick it up whenever I had a free second and hate to put it down. I even managed to knit it while with my knitting group! Unheard of!

Before I babble on more about this, here are the details of the project -


Pattern: Forest Canopy Shoulder Shawl by Susan Pierce Lawrence (another lace genius!)
Yarn: My own handspun, using 8 oz. of Louet 100% wool top in colorway, Violets
Yardage: 300 yards of 2 ply (around 12-13 wraps per inch- dk weight)
Needles: Knit Picks Options in size 8, 32" circular
Time: 4 freakin' days!!!! (including blocking day)
Fun Level: A+ (I'm casting on RIGHT NOW for another one...no kidding.)

Wanna see more pics before I say more????

The fiber before being spun up on my Ashford Joy wheel:

The 2 finished bobbins of yarn (as well as my 4 oz bobbins of icelandic/mohair and llama):

The yarn (in singles) tested for wraps per inch:

The finished yarn, in three skeins:

Now, I HAVE to tell you (in summary) why I loved this pattern so much...

* Susan wrote this pattern is the clearest, most direct, unconfusing way possible.
* She takes you through each and every piece of the lace and describes why you are taking certain steps.
* The charts are large and easy to read, with no squinting.
* Includes a large picture on the front of the pattern, so you can easily see the design and what you're aiming towards.
* Includes directions in both chart form AND written out.
* Uses only 1 skein of yarn and can be easily adapted to other yarns.
* While knitting this, you can distinctly see where the stitches are supposed to line up and where the yo's are supposed to go. If you put the project down, you can see where you left off with very little trouble.

Okay.....MORE pictures!

Working on the lace (not really looking it's best...very crinkly at that time):

The shawl blocking on my bed:

A close up on the lace and a better depiction of the actual color of the yarn:

I first heard of this shawl last year (I think) from Melissa and thought to myself, "Oh, what a simple and pretty shawl."...but then totally put it out of my mind. Then, after seeing Jackie make hers out of the Elsbeth Lavold Silky Wool, I was excited about how beautiful it came out. Finally, I saw Heather's gorgeous shawl, in which she used her own handpainted fiber (which she spun up herself) to make the shawl, and I was floored. I didn't want to wait any longer to make it.

And I'm SOOO glad that I didn't wait.

If you've never knit lace before, I really and truly recommend this pattern for your first lace shawl. I can't tell you enough how much I loved it and how much I enjoyed (and relished....mmmmmm) this knit.

I'll leave you with a couple final pics of the shawl....

and this...

Now, TELL ME WHAT YOU THINK !!!! (you like?)


Witchypoo said...

Gorgeous! just gorgeous. Your handspun really makes it.

Anonymous said...

I think it's gorgeous! It's been in my queue for a while; I think it just might be next after I finish the lace project I'm working on now.

Rachel said...

It's beautiful! And I agree on the pattern. That was my first lace pattern because I heard it was great for beginners...and it was. It got me thoroughly addicted to lace knitting! Your colors are gorgeous!

KSee said...

4 freakin' days!!!! My goodness, do you ever sleep! It is beautiful. To read about how much pleasure you had knitting it says it all.

cayli said...

Love, love love it! The handspun and the pattern together are great.

Maybe this is the pattern I need to get out of my horrible knitting slump.

CraftyGryphon said...

Wow, it's gorgeous! Four days? Wow... The yarn you spun is lovely, and what a great way to show it off!

fulviastudio.com said...

Absolutely beautiful! Thanks for showing it to us.

boo said...

wow, gina, the yarn and the shawl are both breathtaking!


Brenda said...

It's beautiful! And it's great to see the fiber from beginning to end.

mochirunner said...

You've been busy!! That is so awesome that you made the Forest Canopy form your own handspun. I bow down to your fiber talents...

Anonymous said...

Hi, A friend of mine turned me onto your blog recently, and I started working on the Amanda Hat. I love to knit and wear shawls, and your shawl came out so beautiful. The color is gorgeous. You just convinced me to make one. Thanks for sharing. Linda


sopranospinner said...

Lovely! You make me want to get back to mine!

Amy Boogie said...

Your shawl is gorgeous. I've made 3 of them and they are hypnotic. I could make another right now.

Gigi said...

Your handspun is just perfect in this pattern. LOVE how it turned out!

Quality Chick said...

Absolutely gorgeous! I am making some handspun now that I am falling in love with so now I know what to do with it. Thanks for posting the amounts of fiber. Looks like I have more dying and spinning to do but looking at your shawl I know it will be worth it. Looks like you will always be my teacher! I may even try to finally show up on a Friday night to share. - Sandi

Grace said...

Wow it's is so beautiful and your handspun is amazing! You've got mad skills! I'm itching to knit lace now after seeing your shawl. :)

Heide said...

Fabulous! You've made me want to make one too.

susan said...

I totally love the shawl in your handspun. Beautiful!