Thursday, July 12, 2012

Ravellenic training, part 3.

(Note: this post is full of hotlinked images. I know this makes me a bad person. But I don't have enough readers to be stealing a non-negligible amount of bandwidth, or enough time to rehost everything myself.)

A couple of months ago, Tili knitted a Traveling Companion Shawl, and was pleased about the way that it actually wrapped around her and stayed on her shoulders. Being a rather short knitter myself, I can understand her appreciation of a shawl that does this - the common triangular shawl is either far too narrow to wrap around me and stay put, or trails far too long down my back and makes me appear even shorter than I already am. Maybe I'll knit a Traveling Companion for myself sometime (when I have a heavier weight yarn than my beloved laceweight... maybe I can knit Pickle's socks really short and use the leftover Smooshy?) but for now I'm just looking for shawls that, like it, will stay on my shoulders without falling too far down my back.

Pattern criteria

- Semicircular. The shape of the Traveling Companion shawl is not something that's easily searchable (square with a triangle cut out of it?) but I've knitted a Citron before and I know the semicircle works for not-falling-off purposes.

- Laceweight. Because I really, really love laceweight. In case you haven't noticed.

- A pattern that isn't one single lace motif repeated forever and ever. Because those are just kind of boring to knit, and boring to wear.

- (Optionally) Uses needle sizes I already have. This is going to be kind of hard, because I don't actually have very many long circulars in small needle sizes. But if a pattern pops up that happens to use the needles I already have, so much the better!

- (Optionally) Free. None of the patterns I found were, though. And this makes sense, because they're all gorgeous, and the designers deserve to be paid.

Contenders so far

Spiral Octagonal Shawl

Okay, this isn't an actual contender. I can't get the pattern for this, or the pattern for the modified lace edging. I can't even tell whether I could knit this. But I want to. And it's hypnotic.

Radiance Shawl - 900 yards, size 5

This, though. This is gorgeous. Simple, but still enough pattern changes to keep it interesting. A bit small for my Skaska lace, but if I buy another skein of Cascade, that should be enough. (And size 5 needles. I don't have any sort of size 5 needles.)

Call Me Cordelia - 800-900 yards, size 4

I love the name. (I know it comes from Anne of Green Gables, but I keep thinking about the Vorkosigan saga and it makes me happy.) I also like the center portion, though the edges are a little... overwrought for my taste. And I have a very long size 4 circ! Though it will probably have to return to use on Bandit's sweater fairly soon.

Vermont Shawl - 625 yards, size 6

The leaves. The leaves. They look like leaves! I don't have size 6 needles, 625 yards is not even close to an integer number of skeins for either of the lace yarns I have, and I won't ever wear a shawl with so much patterning on it, but look at the leaves!

Passion Flowers - 400-575 yards, size 4/5/6

This is a fair general template of what I was looking for in a shawl pattern - a relatively plain center, with more decorative edging. Though, perhaps not this decorative. I like that I can conceivably knit this with just the one skein of Cascade, though there might have to be some needle shenanigans going on, and it would turn out pretty small.

Vostok - 750-800 yards, size 5

I love the intricacy of this, the different patterns, but it looks... well, like a bridal shawl. Not like something I could wear out casually. Maybe it would look different in something not quite so starch-white, but still...

And finally, just for fun...

Nouveau Beaded Capelet - 1200 yards, size 3

I don't want to knit this so much as I want to have knitted this. It's enormous. It's impressive. It's absolutely stunning. It would make for a wonderful costume accessory. It's even the only thing that would take up anything nearly close to the entirety of the Skaska! But trying to knit it, graft it, and bead it during the Ravellenics... requires a woman much braver than I. (I'm pushing my boundaries with the socks. Those are my realistic boundaries. This is just a dream.)


  1. While you're unlikely to be able to find other patterns that are written for the same shape as the Travelling Companion, many triangular shawls are written for a shape that is basically two triangular panels. It should be pretty easy to modify that kind of pattern to have three triangular panels instead. This is why I'm so excited about the Travelling Companion: not only is it itself awesome, but it opens up new vistas.

  2. The Vostok shawl is amazing! It does look a little bridal in white, but it might be stunning in a deep purple or navy. If you have a long set of size 4 needles, I bet they'd be good for any of these patterns. The Vermont shawl calls for a size 6, but I used 4s. I am a loose knitter, though.