Sunday, February 23, 2014

Dusting things off

It's taken on an abandoned, desolate look around here, so please excuse me while I sweep up the tumbleweeds. Life has been a perfect storm of real life work obligations, podcast technology puzzles, pattern designing, retreat planning, and knitting challenges. I was distracted from my resolution of writing here.  All of that to say: I am sorry for my absence and I hope to rectify the situation now.

So let's get to the knitting!

In conjunction with the Winter Games, I set out to knit the shawl: Viajante between Feb 7th and Feb 23rd.
This shawl pattern is by the amazing Martina Behm, who has a knack for simple yet interesting designs.
Viajante is the Portuguese word for traveler, which is fitting for this HUGE poncho style funnel that sits on your shoulders and has an asymmetrical long side that travels down one arm.  It is so versatile, you will take it with you and wear it everywhere.

This shawl was written to use up a whole skein of Wollmeise Lace-garn, 1700 yards, 300 grams. I have an embarrassing amount of this yarn in my stash, caused by the discovery of Ravelry de-stashes and an obsession with large skeins of yarn.  PERFECT! I had the yarn in stash!

My previous Summer Games challenge, the Evenstar Shawl, was a great learning experience with lots of lace and beading, but it was not well suited for watching the games while knitting it.  So this seemed the perfect match for ease as the pattern boasts: No purling!  So I set out to knit 25 grams a day, for 12 days.

As most challenges go, the cast-on and initial set-up was exciting, and I felt like I was sailing along.  But that was until I weighed the ball!  After 2 days I had only knit a little over my daily goal.  DOH!  My perception of the size of the challenge was skewed. This wasn't quite as easy as I thought it was going to be.

So I stepped it up, and played catch up for a few days.  But once Day 6 rolled around, I hit the proverbial wall. I was tired of knitting this shawl.  When I put it on a longer cable and tried it on, the shawl swallowed me and was larger than any shawl I had ever knit or worn.

But I pressed on.  And I am glad that I did, because a few days later I was ready to bind off, and I had this beauty:

That is a 4 foot measuring stick, and I am 5ft 7 inches tall

This picture best represents the colors in the shawl

I highly recommend this shawl for new and experienced knitters.  It is simple with just a few decreases and increases, and the mesh.  Yet the results are stunning!  The fabric created is light and thin, wearable in many seasons, and styled in a multitude of ways.

My knitting experience was intense and condensed, which was perfect for me, as I don't know that I would have persevered if I didn't have a short-term and immediate goal in mind.   If you are looking for a long term project, I could see working a few rows a day into the foreseeable future culminating into a shawl you will wear often.

What have you been knitting lately?  Did you knit anything while watching the Winter Games?


  1. It looks awesome! I want to knit this so bad! I have a huge laceweight cone that I aquired last summer when a woman was clearing out her year old stash because she didnt knit anymore but I have to do a next to skin test first and see if it softens after blocking......I am slightly nervous though because hello amazing knitted FO, but that is like a huge motherload of a sock basically (in the round stockinett FOREVER).

  2. I love how enormous that shawl is! It would be great to wrap up in for sure.

  3. I just finished a Brickless, and was rather in awe about how loooooong it turned out. Seems like I just keep wrapping it around my next! and the ends still are around my knees. I love it though - very cosy for this cold snap we are having. No Olympic watching for me, we don't have cable TV. I wondered if my kids would whine "everyone else is watching it" but they didn't. Whew, dodged that bullet :-))
    Your shawl is quite lovely - next post -model the myriad ways it can be worn?? :-))

  4. I've just finished my Viajante too, but I've discovered a couple of stitches that the yarn is split so I need to secure those places before there is any chance of a hole being created. Then I can take photos and wear it. I love it though. Yours is gorgeous. I love the yarn colourway. It seems to be much harder to score the variegated Lace-Garn at the moment. Mine is a semi-solid.

  5. Once in a while, when I catch myself slogging along on a project I find myself thinking, "Megan made a sweater in a week!" or "Megan made that huge Viajante!" and I keep going. :) I'm so good at taking a break from a project and not getting back to it right away. Thanks for the mental boost!