May 1st, 2014
Welcome back everyone! It’s week four, just one more week to go until we wrap up the knit along. Hopefully we’re all starting to get some good length accumulated on our shawls but I’m sure for some it feels like that 90 inches will never come. Don’t worry, one great thing about doing a project with such large needles is that it will move quickly. If you are getting close to 90 inches keep in mind that your shawl will grow a bit when you block it. When measuring, give the shawl a stretch, you may actually be there before you know it!
Which brings me to our final step, blocking. We touched on blocking when talking about making a swatch but there’s a little more to it. There are multiple ways to block and a lot of factors to consider when choosing a method such as drying time, fiber, and maybe most important for this project, size and amount of space you can devote to blocking. In the previous post we talked about wet blocking. This is a great option if you have a large space where your entire shawl can dry for a couple days. If you have a spare bedroom you can put towels down on the mattress, pin it out and let it dry. However I’m sure, like me, many of you just don’t have that kind of space. The rest of us will have to block our shawls in sections and for this I prefer to block with steam. Steam blocking is wonderful because it gives you a lot of control and cuts down the drying time quite a bit. There are some who will say that you shouldn’t block acrylic with steam, but in my experience steam blocking with give acrylic a wonderful drape, you just have to be careful not to overdo it. Here’s the how to: pin out a section of the shawl while it is dry. Take a spray bottle filled with water and spray until nice and damp. With a steamer or steam iron float about an inch above the shawl letting the steam penetrate the fibers. If working with acrylic you might actually be able to see the fibers relax. Take care to not leave the steam in one place to long and not to touch the steamer down onto the yarn. When done just let dry then move on to the next section.
I’ve got a little more to go before I block mine this week but check back in next week for the finished product and to see some styling options. Here’s a picture of my progress so far.
|About Grace: Grace DiLorenzo has been knitting for the last 10 years. What started as a hobby quickly grew into a passion. Her favorite things to make are garments and lace. As a teacher at the Lion Brand Yarn Studio in New York City she has been able to share her love of yarn crafting teaching beginning through advanced knitting and yarn dyeing classes. She has lead the first four in studio knit alongs and is excited to do it again!|