Pentire Point shawl

Pentire Collage

New pattern time, and this time it is an easy to work but dramatic lace shawl with three shaping options.

Inspired by the rugged Cornish coastline, it can be worked as either a triangle, a crescent, or a heart shape (or all threee).

Yarn requirements: 420-480 yards of fingering weight/4 ply/sock yarn for each shawl.

Gauge: 14 sts and 29 rows over 4 inches/10 cm in stockinette after blocking (changes to gauge will result in more/less yarn being used and different final dimensions)

Finished measurements:

Shape Wingspan Maximum depth
Triangle 59 inches / 150 cm 27.5 inches / 70 cm
Heart 61 inches / 155 cm 29 inches / 74 cm
Crescent 64 inches / 162 cm 21 inches / 53 cm

2 pdf files are provided – a printer friendly version and one with all of the high-res images. Click on the image above for more photos.

Spinning wheelapalooza

I have been keeping any eye out for second hand spinning wheels over the last month or so (and there was a possibility that I might get one sent over from New Zealand via a friend of a friend). A couple of nights ago I can across a Gumtree listing for a wheel and chair located about 5 miles away from me. We exchanged messages and I agreed to go and have a look at it after my Body Pump class this morning.

I did as much research as I could online based on the single image in the ad and the knowledge that it definitely wasn’t an Ashford Traditional (wrong number of spokes on the drive wheel), but was coming up a blank. I also checked what to look out for in a second hand wheel (that all of the bits moved as they should, a true spin on the drive wheel, no rust in the orifice of the flyer, etc.). So obviously, with 6 extra bobbins in two lazy kates, what looks to be the original orifice hook handle (with a crochet hook substituted for the original hook) and a chair, I bought it for the drop-down bargain price of £75 (I know, a steal, but it’s what they asked for it).

I would love to know more about the wheel if anybody recognises it, there are no makers marks anywhere except an M or W on the pins holding the drive wheel in place. Photos:

Whole kit and caboodleWheelPinsFlyerMother of All

Tour de Fleece – week 3

The first two weeks of Tour de France/Fleece saw me spin, ply, skein and soak 300g of Shetland superfine fibre into useable yarn. I spent week 3 in Ireland at the European Juggling Convention and managed about 30g of Blue Faced Leicester. I am very happy with my spinning progress over the course of Tour de Fleece and feel like my skills have improved as well as taking the opportunity to try some new techniques. I hope to continue with my spinning and hope to try out some wheels at the Bristol Wool Fair in September. After the remaining 70g of this BFL is spun up I have some new designs that need writing up and testing out, inspired by TDF, so keep an eye out.

 TDF collage

Tour de Fleece – week 2

The Tour de France has now been going for two weeks, with one rest day so far. The race has been attritional with riders competing with broken wrists, hands and tibias, but all I have suffered is a little bit of an ache in my left hand which I draft with. I’m pleased with my progress having spindle spun 300g of superfine shetland (and about another 5g of BFL) over 13 days, 200g of which has been simply 2-plied and 100g which has been chain plied.

I will be spending the remainder of le Tour in Ireland at the European Juggling Convention so won’t be able to put as much time in. I am taking a trindle, a nostepinne and 300g of fibre with me, though. And no juggling props (fibre is much easier to pack).

IMG158 TDF week 2 collage

Tour de Fleece – week 1

The Tour de France has gone through 7 stages (though not all of the riders have) and I have completed 7 days of spinning as part of the Tour de Fleece. So far I have spun up 200g of Shetland superfine wool using my new trindle. The first 100g I created a plying ball for (note to self, do not do this direct from the cops next time, massive tangle) and then plied into a heavy fingering/sport weight yarn. The second 200g I spun each cop into centre-pull balls and then bodged together a lazy kate using a couple of chopsticks and a cardboard box before plying.

Next up is learning to chain ply whilst spindle spinning. A disadvantage of spindling over using a spinning wheel is winding on the yarn to the spindle, transforming it for later plying and then having to wind that on too. Just having to deal with bobbins would surely cut down on a lot of that time, so I’m going to try doing the spinning and plying all in one, then skeining directly from the cop.

IMG134 TDF week 1