When I was getting ready to post this morning, Blogger didn't upload my pictures. No big deal ... used to that already. All I needed to do is to wait a bit ... during which I played around with the camera again. The colour is better during the day even indoors:
Pattern and Modification: The Sampler Stole designed by Hazel Carter from A Gathering of Lace
The pattern is not too difficult and there are various lace patterns (sampler!) for beginners to try on. I personally enjoyed knitting the 2 borders most. Not too much modification except skipping one central panel repeat.
When knitting the edging on the side, at first I followed the pattern and knitted the edging together with the stole every row. Obviously I had problem identifying rows in lace because I ended up with an edging that was crowded with too many repeats. So, I examined the picture of the stole in the book and counted 8 repeats along one border. Using stitch markers to evenly distribute the 8 repeats along the side, I got something more decent. There are 162 rows in the border ... some calculation led me to another 14 repeats along the central panel. This was why I said math was good for you, knitters!
Blocking: I followed Yarn Harlot's advice on blocking lace and used some invisible cord to thread through the 4 sides of the stole before putting it into the bath. This really made opening out the wet stole on the blocking towel a lot easier. However, I still had to use blocking wires in the real blocking since they are much more sturdy.
Yarn: Alpaca Cloud in Iris
This is a lovely yarn which is really soft. However, after some intense knitting, I discovered that I might be allergic to alpaca ... at least my fingers are! During the last 2 weeks, I almost worked solely on this project and now my thumbs and index fingers are all dry. They were also itchy and red and even a little bit swollen before I finished. Yet, the good news is that I seem to be able to wear the stole without much irritation.
Gauge and Needle: US2 and unknown gauge
I used US2 DPNs to knit the edging ... much more convenient.
Final measurements: 65" x 21"
Start date: 03-1-2006
Finish date: 05-1-2006