Monday, 8 November 2010

Yet More Shawls

If you don't already follow the Itty Bitty Kitty Committee, go and look at this post. It is so cute that your teeth will probably drop out of your head if you look at it for too long.

I've nearly finished the Feather Duster. I'm half-way through the seventh repeat, which is one more than the pattern calls for and I think I'll finish it there. It doesn't have a border and is intended to have a feathery edge, but I'm not sure me and my back are up to all the pinning required. It can be pinned out into points instead and I might do that.

While I was doing it I cast on for and finished another Miss Marple, this time in a dark earthy green (I think it was called Highland) which has been discontinued. Some years ago I laboured under the delusion that I was going to knit Brandon Mably's Game Board Cardigan and I devoted a lot of energy to getting obscure shades of Felted Tweed.

I thought I had a whole pack of Midnight (which isn't obscure) but when I went and dug it out of the back of the wardrobe it was actually this green. So I combined it with a strand of a pale watery greeny Kidsilk Haze and I was off.

It's going to be a Christmas present. It isn't as deliciously soft as the blue one I knitted for myself, but it's still a nice squishy scarf. I did more increases in the frill, two out of three stitches instead of alternate stitches, but it doesn't look much different. I think I'll just have to go the whole hog and increase in every stitch next time.

While I was doing the Duster and the Marple, I decided that whizzing backwards and forwards on ever-increasing rows of shawl wasn't very challenging, and I ran up something a bit fiddly in between times. It's something I've been meaning to try for a while.

Can you tell what it is yet?

This is intended as a test run to get the hang of the pattern, which is the Venus de Merino, a woolly version of the Venus de Willendorff. I think it's a wonderful pattern and the sort of thing you want to produce in ten different yarns just to see what it looks like. I wonder if I could persuade some people that they would like one for Christmas.

This one is alabaster (Rowan Pure Wool 4 Ply in Snow) with nips of rosy quartz (Rowan Kid Classic in Sherbet Dip). She's about five inches high. I think I had in mind the Amarna Princess, who is a beautiful forgery.

I had a little photo shoot with her this afternoon. I didn't understand the instructions for the increases in the legs so they aren't right. She can have a tight perm or tumbling dreadlocks, but I decided to stay plain on this one.

Venus is best knitted to a firm tension so that she keeps her shape, and so that the stuffing doesn't show through. I used kapok for the stuffing, which is perhaps not malleable enough. I might try polyester next time.

I can't resist showing one of my favourite paintings here. Ms Willendorf isn't in it, but it's worth clicking to see who is.

Peter Blake The Venuses' Outing to Weymouth Waddington Galleries

Yes, Joan, I've seen Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter... and Spring, and yes, I did like it. I mostly remember water lilies.

I would recommend the Forest Canopy Shawl, Sea, if it's your first lace. It's written out and charted, and very easy to follow. For some reason I have a blind spot with the first chart and I always read the instructions for it, and then switch to the charts for the rest. I think it's a very good pattern for learning to 'read' the lace. It wasn't the first lace pattern I made, but it was the first one that really gave me confidence.

And I swatched for the Aeolian Shawl, Amy, but I haven't settled on a yarn yet: nothing seems quite right. Perhaps it's time dig out the Lace Club stuff and re-direct some of it.


Anonymous said...

I posed for the Venus de Willendorff -- did you know that? (Why, yes, I am rather well-preserved for a 22,000+ year-old woman, thank you for noticing). Frankly, I'd rather my figure were more like some of the other females in that last painting, but I am what I am...

Mette said...

I have entered a phase of combining threads and colours these days and I think your shawl is very lovely.
A woolen Venus:) Love Her.

Ambermoggie, a fragrant soul said...

Wow you have been busy and I see that you are as obsessed still with shawls as IO am:) I love the Venus. Did try knitting her but haven't got it right yet

Knitting Linguist said...

I love your Venus! What an absolutely fabulous pattern; I may need to knit one of those to go with my little metal one that stands on my kitchen windowsill (greatly discomfiting those who don't know what it is, oddly).

Lisa R-R said...

Very interesting diversion indeed!
I had never thought of a knitted Venus of Willendorf.

Mary Lou said...

A knitted Venus of Willendorf - who thinks of these things? Love Miss Marple - I think Kidsilk Haze makes everthing better. It is the bacon of yarn.

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