I found this pattern and yarn in May, at Cummington. It's a larger shawl (92 X 46 inches) and when I saw it, I immediately thought it would be perfect for a family wedding I was attending in October. With the maple tree designs for the fall, and the pretty beads to give it sparkle - I just loved it. Although I have knit lace in the past, the stuff I have knit were always just triangles - no edging after the fact, certainly not this big, and definitely not with beads on every single row!
When I starting knitting in July, I realized that it was a bit more difficult than shawls I have tackled before, but didn't think anything of it. I knit on it in bits and pieces all summer, but barely made progress because it was definitely NOT portable with the beads and I was concentrating on knitting socks. I figured that I would finish the sock knitting in September, and have a few weeks to finish this, and I would be fine.
I was wrong. Here is the finished shawl blocking in my hotel room the evening before the wedding:
I was blocking this (with Aaron's help) at 11 PM. The wedding was the next day at 3:00 PM. Thankfully, the yarn is 100% tencel, and dried with no problems. A week before this, I had finished the body of the shawl, and just had the edging to go. I had about 500 stitches to bind off with the edging, but figured it couldn't take all that long. Ha. 18 stitches took a full hour of knitting.
So, as of Sunday of last week, I had about 28 hours of solid knitting to do. Remember that I work full time, and need to eat and sleep (and sometimes pee). What I did was get up at 5 AM each day and knit before work. If I was on a conference call at work, I would knit. At night, I would knit until all hours.... and Aaron did all the cooking. But the edging? Totally worth the pain:
You really can't see the beads, but it adds a wonderful sparkle to the finished piece, and really helps with the way it hangs. And here is a close up of the maple leaves:
I actually don't have any pictures of me in the shawl at the wedding. I was distracted by everyone! But I promise to have Aaron take some pictures of me with the shawl later. Want the details?
Pattern: Maple Tree, by Karen Joan Raz
Yarn: Just Our Yarn, Almaza
Needles: Turbo Addi Lace Size 2
Comments: Even though I was in a rush to get it done, I found myself slowing down towards the end. I do that on projects that I enjoy knitting. The charts were perfectly written and easy to read and the yarn was wonderful!