Monday 17 April 2017

Blocking Knitting: Before & After

I've just recently completed two shawls, both of which have made me Very Happy.

One is for a friend...

The blue Spindrift Shawl from Curious Handmade made from a heavenly Merino/Silk blend (soft just doesn't describe it).

If you sign up for the Curious Handmade email, you can even get this pattern for free.  She has lots of helpful tips about knitting shawls and lace, in the form of a series of emails to guide you through the process of knitting this shawl.

It's an excellent place to start if you've not knitted shawls or lace before.

This was such a lovely knit:  simple, quick, gratifying.

I love the way the lace looks like the foaming of waves on a sandy shore.
The only issue I have is that the neckline is a little tight.  I think this is because silk isn't as giving as wool.  Or perhaps it was my tension.  It was curling over due to the tension.

I was pretty aggressive in pulling it out in the blocking, but really, there wasn't much I could do, as there was no give along the edge of the shawl.   Still it improved a lot by the finished product!

before blocking:  looks a little crumpled and uneven

Doesn't that just look stunning now.
The lace after blocking 

Defined.  Open.  Lace

I also made my daughter the Snowflake Party Shawl by Martina Behm.  This is another simple, fast and gratifying knit.  Another good beginning shawl.  This was also an opportunity for me to experiment with colours and stripes.

I had some leftover CircusTonicHandmade Star Finch yarn, which Princess loves.  It wasn't enough for an entire item, so I matched it with Bendigo Yarns Luxury 4 ply in Coral.  They are a fantastic match.

Before blocking

As the shawl progressed, I gradually introduced stripes of the Star Finch, and gradually decreased the Coral.  You can see the changes in the stripes below.  If you want to see the exact formula for how I did it, the details are on my Ravelry Project Page here.

I added some extra rows to the end of the shawl to give a border to the lace pattern, and an opportunity to create more fabric in the Star Finch yarn.

During knitting, the snowflakes weren't all that defined.

I blocked this fairly aggressively (that means I stretched it quite a bit) - the shawl seemed to grow a lot in the blocking process!

The result?

Lovely, clear snowflakes, dancing over the shawl.


PS.  If anyone has any tips on how to get children to model for you, send them my way!

PPS.  And here's your reward for reading right to the end...

Why be normal when you can be, well, weird?  Dancing? and Photobombing? Why not!


  1. Justine, the shawls are just gorgeous. So beautiful. I bet your friend loved her shawl and Princess looks so sweet in hers. Well done you. x

    1. Thank you so much aunty l, I'm enjoying learning so many new things, and making things for loved ones xx

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