Sunday, May 11, 2008

Spring Rains and Swallowtails

Last week, we had gorgeous weather. Today, it's gray and yucky. A perfect knitting day, for sure!

I've been doing a few rows here and there on the Swallowtail shawl; I've now completed the main body of the shawl and have also gotten through the first Lily of the Valley chart. That leaves one repeat of the second Lily of the Valley chart (12 rows) and the edging chart.


I was surprised to find out that I really hadn't read the pattern very carefully before starting; it contains nupps. I don't like nupps. At least, I didn't like nupps in laceweight yarn.


The arrows are pointing at some of the nupps. In this yarn, I don't mind them at all. As long as I make the increased stitches rather loosely, I don't have too much difficulty in purling the 5 stitches together on the wrong side. Using Knitpicks Options needles helps, too. Have I mentioned how much I love my Options needles? So far, they are THE best for lace knitting, even better than the Addi Lace needles, which make my fingers smell like copper, not to mention the price. I really, really want to get more of the KP needles!

While grazing through some Ravelry discussions this morning, I came across one that was discussing preferred colours for lace knitting. If you had asked me that question two weeks ago, I would have said that I preferred lighter colours for lace, colours that reflect nature. One of my favourite shawls is in autumn shades, copper, green, gold; another fave is a natural white. The Swallowtail shawl, in it's gorgeous jewel tones, is really wowing me. The colours are vibrant, strong. And I love how it's working up into this shawl.

The pattern... it isn't a difficult pattern. The nupps are the most difficult part of the entire pattern (so far, and I don't anticipate anything more daunting than the nupps), so I would heartily recommend the pattern for anyone wanting a fun, not too challenging shawl pattern.


  1. The colors of your current SIP (shawl in progress!) are very beautiful - vivid and saturated - peacock colors :)

    I have been pondering shawls and colors myself lately. I have never cared for neutral or dark muted tones. But, it occurs to me that such colors would make a shawl much more versatile than in it were worked in fire engine red or violent violet. The only other alternative would be to make a shawl for every outfit.

    Hmmm...where's the downside? LOL!

  2. I love the yarn that you chose - so pretty!
    I have the pattern for this shawl, as well as the yarn (Malabrigo Lace- Brilliente), but it was frusterating me to no end so I frogged it. Now that I've seen yours, though, I might have to pick it back up again! ^_^