Friday, July 8, 2011

Beach Glass

Designing new projects is always a lot of fun, but it's also a lot of work and I enjoy knitting other people's designs from time to time, especially in the summer when it's nice to slow down a bit and enjoy the season.  So I was thrilled to have the opportunity to test knit a new pattern for my blogging friend Diana.  

You may remember the fabulous job Diana did on my Sothia shawl test knit recently, 

and I love being able to knit her new design, shown on her Ravelry project page as Green Tulips.

I started later than most of the other testers so my shawl is not very large yet but I'm trying to make up some ground and hope to finish a lot of it this weekend.

Further delay was caused because I originally began this project with a vastly different lace yarn in pure alpaca.  The original yarn, which (because I intend to only publish positive reviews on this blog) shall remain nameless, caused me so much aggravation that I spent hours on just a few inches before I ripped it from the needles and started over again this week with something pulled from my stash. 

The new yarn is an unknown wool/ angora/ nylon  purchased at a wool festival last autumn from a vendor who imports closeouts from Russia.  

This yarn is terrific with great texture that is not overly soft or fuzzy, and it has wonderful stitch definition .  

The vendor only had one color available, a shade of aqua that reminds me of the sea glass I collect from trips to the beach.

I am really enjoying knitting this beautiful shawl, thank you Diana!  The pattern is easy to follow and clear, and the charts are excellent.  The stitch pattern is very large and slightly asymmetric so it took a few rows to get the rhythm, but now I am zooming right along and loving every minute.  

A 'favorite thing' I have been using for this project and that I must share with you is one of my favorite tools for chart knitting - highlighter tape.  

Found at some LYS, office supply stores, or in the school supply section of large stores, this semi-transparent tape comes in many colors, and can be adhered, lifted and moved over and over again as you progress through the chart, allowing you to easily see which row you are knitting and at the same time, where you have been and what is coming next.  

I usually put my paper pattern into a plastic sleeve then position the tape so that it covers the rows yet to be knitted and my current row is uncovered, just below the tape.  Then I move the tape up as I progress.  

I hope this tape tip makes your knitting just a little simpler and more fun.  And don't forget about my blogiversary free knitting pattern and yarn giveaway contest going on until July 21st, 2011, detailed in this post.

Look for Diana's new pattern to be released within a few weeks, I know you will love it!  


  1. Lovely beginning! The color of your yarn is very beautiful! I am so glad that you and Diana work so closely together, helping each other with the patterns. Way to go!

  2. Thank you so much Robin for test knitting and for beautiful pictures of your progress :)) The color is peaceful and relaxing. I love it. The 'unmentioned" yarn you wrote to me about is very tricky indeed ;-)) I am glad you found such a beautiful alternative :-))
    Wish you a great weekend :-))

  3. You was absolutely right about color definition! It gaves me a feeling of a cool water. It is so beautiful beginning!

  4. I immediately noticed something familiar! Lovely colour. I am sure it will be a nice shawl in a fresh colour!

  5. Smitiha, thank you! Yes, the color does remind of cool water also, or perhaps the clear Caribbean Sea.

  6. Anna, I am enjoying the challenging stitch pattern and lovely yarn combination very much!

  7. Love the color but the pattern can't hold a candle to Brandywine falls! Just love that one, of course, Sothia's not bad either! :-)

  8. Am enjoying knitting Sothia. I just wish I could settle on 2 colours.

  9. Tora, thank you very much for your comment and enthusiasm for my designs, I appreciate it!

  10. Daisy, I a so glad you are enjoying knitting Sothia, that is my greatest wish - for knitters to enjoy my patterns! Several Sothia knitters on have used multiple colors, I think you could certainly use more than two if you wish. :)

  11. Dear Robin, Knitting your Sothis is a real pleasure and thanks for the tip with the pattern paper....

  12. Thanks for the tip about the tape, off to buy some today.

    I have only recently found your blog and it is great, I've also been admiring your designs on Rav.

  13. Anett, I am SO glad you like Sothia and found the tip helpful!

  14. Sharon, I'm glad you found the tip useful! Thanks for being a reader.

  15. This looks really lovely!
    Thanks for the tip about the highlighter tape. Hopefully I can find an equivalent locally.