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Lilaceous Shawl on Knitty

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Lilaceous ShawlLilaceous Shawl

lilaceous adj.
Pronunciation: /laɪˈleɪʃəs/
Etymology: < lilac n. + -eous suffix. Definition: Of or belonging to a lilac colour.

I’m so utterly delighted & honoured to have a pattern in the latest issue of Knitty! Lilaceous is a lacy counterpane shawl, constructed just like the Beeton Shawl, with three triangles knit around a circular-knit square – and yes, the counterpane shawl ebook I’ve been talking about for ages will be available oh so soon! Since lilacs are my thing, I wanted to design a shawl that came as close to capturing their form as I could.

I don’t know whether I was thinking about Seignac’s Virginité (or just spying on the neighbours) when I posed for the photos, but the colours certainly remind me of it. Unfortunately it was still far too cold to shoot outdoors, and when the lilacs did bloom, my photography attempts were foiled by dappled light (the bane of correct exposure).

Guillaume Seignac - Virginite

Knitty, apart from being my favourite knitting publication, also has the distinction of being the magazine I’ve knit most patterns from. I’ve written before about how knitting projects encapsulate memories of the time you were knitting them, and looking at this list of projects I’ve knit from Knitty patterns reminds me of my old dorm room, epic charity shop yarn bargains, past Christmasses, friends I haven’t seen in ages, and, generally, times when knitting was so much more confusing for me than it is now…

Knitty Patterns I’ve Knit

In descending order of quantity:

A handful of Calorimetrys *
3 Mintys **
2 Clapotis
2 Pair Fetching
1 Aibhlinn
1 Bitterroot
1 Wavy
A coaster using Binary
Half an Ivy
Half an RPM
And there are probably others I’ve missed…

I’ve come a long way since my first tentative Clapotis, but lest I’m tempted to rest on my lilacs laurels, Knitty still serves up patterns that mystify me by their elegance and complexity. Thank you Amy, Jillian, and Liz!

Lilaceous Shawl
Lilaceous Shawl
Lilaceous Shawl
Lilaceous Shawl

I also wanted to thank everyone for the overwhelming number of lovely messages I’ve received about Lilaceous; I will do my best to get back to all of you. I ♥ you, knitters!

* I’m about to knit another one for a friend who lost hers.
** Possibly my favourite pattern ever (as I’ve mentioned before). I wear one almost every day, and almost every day I get complimented on it or someone asks me how it’s made.

14th December, 2012  // Downloads, Neckwear // tags: , , , , , .

Umbel Square Shawl

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umbel shawl
UMBEL SHAWL PATTERN – £3.00 (approx. $4.70)

As I mentioned last week, I used the Fill-in-the-Blanks Shawl Design formula to create this design, and the stitch pattern is from the beautiful Haapsalu Shawl book, (which I will be reviewing very soon). Umbel is a botanical term for a type of inflorescence that resembles an umbrella. I chose the name because the clusters of nupps in this stitch pattern remind me of Queen Anne’s Lace and geraniums, but clearly I’m still on the theme of umbrellas and flowers. :)

I find that square shawls are my favourites for keeping warm because two of the points fall at the elbows, one down the back, and two across the front to let hang or wrap around the neck. The drape looks very graceful, especially in a lightweight yarn like this kid mohair, and the shawl stays on your shoulders no matter what you do – useful if you’re manipulating drinks and nibbles at a garden party. Or just pottering around the house like me. :)

umbel shawl

Each row of the stitch pattern is actually quite easy to memorise, and it’s also easy to spot mistakes quickly. Don’t be afraid of the nupps either; they’re nowhere near as slow as bobbles, and you can watch this video to see how Nancy Bush makes them. You can work the shawl smaller or larger if you wish, or even use the Fill-in-the-Blanks Shawl Design ebook to turn it into a triangular shawl, which will require much less yarn.

umbel shawl

And if you’re in the UK, and feel like heaving a sigh when you see the Vitamin D tablets, Lemsip variations and discounted suncream lining the checkout aisles, I’d love to see an Umbel knit in a heavier, warmer yarn. Sigh

umbel shawl


1 size with instructions for working smaller or larger shawls.

‣ Finished size is 100cm / 40in across each side of the square,
‣ with a height of 70cm / 27.5in at the central point when worn.

‣ 3 balls Feza Kid Mohair [25gr; 85% mohair, 8% nylon, 7% polyester; 250m / 275yds; colour: 572],
‣ or approx. 750m / 820yds of lace-weight yarn.

‣ 4mm (US 6) straight or circular needles.
‣ 5.5mm (US 9) needle for binding off.

‣ 15 sts / 20 rows over 10cm / 4in in stocking stitch after blocking.
‣ Gauge isn’t critical, but it will affect the final size and yardage of the shawl.
‣ Make sure the lace looks open and clear.

‣ 5 stitch markers,
‣ Tapestry needle for weaving in ends,
‣ Blocking pins & wires.

umbel shawl
UMBEL SHAWL PATTERN – £3.00 (approx. $4.70)

26th June, 2012  // Downloads, Neckwear // tags: , , , .

Wordless Wednesday

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cornflower hat
cornflower hat
cornflower hat
cornflower hat
cornflower hat

Another upcoming pattern. I’ve provisionally called it “Cornflower”, but I’m not sure. What do you think?

10th August, 2011  // 5 O'Clock, Photographs, Roundelay // tags: , , , , .
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