Tuesday, September 4, 2012

rock island

Rock Island on Grand Manan

Last Christmas my friend Lori gave me a knitting pattern for the Rock Island shawl.  I'm not easily intimidated but this airy lacy wrap gave me pause - partly because it would be the first time I was knitting lace solely using charts and partly because it was, well, lace. For you non-knitters, lace weight yarn is only slightly heavier than thread.  Only slightly.   I finally took the plunge in August armed with my 4mm circulars and a skein of Madeline Tosh lace in French Grey.   The shawl is constructed by knitting the lace edging first and then picking up stitches and knitting the centre triangle.  The intricate lace edging was coming along well ... and then this happened.

The Rock Island disaster
I was on row 516 of the lace edging when I realized there was a mistake on row 264 that would make proper construction of the shawl impossible. The only solution was unraveling.  Like taking a band-aid off, I did it immediately and quickly and started back at it immediately.  Even with the disaster I finished the shawl in a week (lots of vacation knitting!) and it's probably one of my favourite things I've knit.  Despite being delicate, I didn't want to be too precious about wearing it and wore it to the Sardine Museum during the Summer's End Folk Festival.

Rock Island was designed by Jared Flood of Brooklyn Tweed.  This was my first introduction to Brooklyn Tweed but having flipped through their lookbooks, I'm definitely a fan.  Their work is strongly rooted in traditional techniques (like the Shetland shawl construction of Rock Island) with a contemporary feel and they manage to be at once cozy and elegant. 


Michelle said...

I tackled Rock Island this summer as well - there was some ripping back, some muttering but it is such a beautiful piece of knitting now that I am immensely proud of it. Well done, yours looks beautiful - love the colour.

Kandise said...

Oh that is lovely. All of Jared's designs are so interesting! You should definitely check out more.

Kate said...

Stunning! Would you make and sell one of those shawls?

Jo @ To a Pretty Life said...

Oh, I wish I could knit more than just rectangles! The shawl is beautiful, and I second Kate's question about whether you'd sell one or two. I love the colour you chose.