Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Spider Lace

Another co-worker retiring, another lace shawl made. It's quite astonishing how much I miss having lace on the needles now that this is done, but there's a sweater UFO weighing on my mind that I'll need to tackle first, before starting a new lace project. One project too big to lug around at a time...

I had been wanting to learn this pattern every since I bought Jane Sowerby's Victorian Lace Today. That book is a feast for the eyes, by the way. This particular pattern doesn't even look like knitting. It looks a little like tatting, which I learned and forgot decades ago. It took me a couple of false starts to get the hang of it, and then I never looked back. I made heavy use of Ravelry's ability to search for people who have made a pattern and left helpful notes.

Long before (fortunately) I started the edging, I realized that my co-worker likes beads. I knew exactly the beads I wanted (round crystals that would look like drops of water), but I had to go through a few weeks of self-doubt, and followed by a few more weeks of research because I absolutely wanted to add them by the crochet method instead of stringing, which meant I had to have a hole circumference and a crochet hook that would play well together, and a vendor (Beadaholique) who made that information easy to find. The beads (and new crochet hook) arrived before I needed them.

I tried the bead placement others had used, and it wasn't enough for me. A little experimenting, a little consultation with my mathematician daughter, and I settled on adding the beads to the edge points of the diamonds in the edging.

Then, finally, the delight of lace blocking, turning this:

into this:

Pattern: A Curved Shawl with Diamond Edging
Yarn: Juniper Moon Findley in Poppy
Beads: Czech Seed Beads, size 6/0, crystal clear
Needles: circular 3.00 mm, with nice sharp tips
Mods: used lots of hints from amvs, divadar,2totangle on Ravelry. Ultimately, I settled on adding the beads to row 1, stitch 6 of the k8 section; and row 9, stitches 2 and 12 of the k12 section in the edging.

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