Wednesday, February 18, 2009

A Fair Isle on the Horizon

This morning our prayer shawl ministry team, Knit One Pray Too, met at our local coffee shop, The Blend. I really enjoy getting together with these ladies. They have such a desire to serve. Each time we've had a request for a prayer shawl, someone has already made one or is willing to do so. Usually we meet once a month on the third Wed in the evening at Crossroads United Methodist Church but once in a while we switch to a day meeting. Today M and I both brought our relatively new copies of A Prayer Shawl Companion. The others were interested in looking at the patterns, prayers, and poems in the book.

I'm on a bit of a baby binge again. I finished another Pinwheel Blankie. Sarah was here one day and I demonstrated for her how to start that blanket. When I finished the Raspberry Wool Peddler's Shawl I didn't have a project to launch right into since the next project was requiring a lot of swatching and planning. I picked up the Pinwheel Blankie and it felt good in my hands. At the time I needed something soothing. With the first Pinwheel Blankie I made (yellow) I came so close to running out of yarn on the border that I overcompensated on this one. So the end result is just barely 36 inches across. That is big enough for a tiny baby, especially if it is used over a stroller or car seat. It might be a bit skimpy for actually wrapping around the baby.

Another fun project was Alice Starmore's Wee Baby Bonnet pictured on the front of Piecework Magazine Jan/Feb 2009. I used remnants of Shetland Wool from Meg Swansen/Schoolhouse Press. I would eventually like to make the cap in the more highly contrasting colors chosen by Alice Starmore but I used what I had on hand. The little ear flaps are so cute; I love the way they tuck under the edge. The cap is actually a swatch for a Fair Isle Vest, a kit I purchased years ago from Schoolhouse Press. During our move in May 2007 I lost or misplaced a few things. In fact, the only errant objects that I know of are two knitting videos and one of them came with this kit. Although the video is not absolutely necessary I think I would enjoy watching it as it was filmed on Washington Island, in Door County WI, which is one of our favorite places on the whole planet.

My, didn't the baby bonnet have a boatload of ends to weave in? I've started on the Fair Isle Vest but it is slow going. You would think the baby bonnet in the exact same wool (different colors), washed and blocked, would be an accurate enough gauge swatch, but so far the vest is looking looser. I am gamely plowing ahead and trusting my needles, wool, and hands. That could be a BIG mistake for when you make a gauge error on Fair Isle you will pay dearly in the end. This much I know.


Joy said...

The bonnet is darling - I like your colors!

imripple said...

What lovely projects! The bonnet is adorable...weaving the ends in is my least favorite thing to do tho! Thanx again for this morning, it did re-energize me!

KPiep said...

I long for Fair Isle! However, I'm committed to working through my stash as much as possible first. Maybe next year....

Marie said...

I love your baby blanket. The pinwheel is such a fab and fun design.

All those ends are just another reason I avoid Fair Isle. The first is having to manage all those little balls of yarn. Ung. But, I must admit it does look lovely once it's all finished.

willow said...

Beautiful work! I love the idea of knitting and praying.

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