Jobo Designs

Letting the crafty creative juices flow. Knitting, spinning, crafting, dyeing, rabbits, sheep and more!

8. April 2011 08:21
by Jobo
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Back to the "Swatching" Board...

8. April 2011 08:21 by Jobo | 0 Comments

You might have noticed the swatch under Grampy's Scissors in the post on Monday... What WAS that anyways?  Well... it is the latest Angora swatch... testing out some lovely traditional Estonian designs from a book I bought recently Haapsalu Shawl by Siiri Reimann.  The book itself is amazing!  It isn't exactly a step-by-step pattern book, more an anthology of wonderful traditional patterns and motifs.  Drool Drool.

Lily of the valley swatch

The yarn (or dare I say "Thread") is a soft blend of "Blue" English Angora fiber (from my "Private" supplier *wink wink*) and some  Handpainted Seasilk Top that I've been tiptoing around in my stash.  The Seasilk is dyed in Blues and Purples, reminiscent of lazy purple sunset clouds and the color of perfect faded blue jeans.  When mixed with the Angora, the result is a very light, very soft hand, and a delightful muted purple tone.

To give you an idea of size... this swatch was knitted on 2 mm needles, with the light 2-ply laceweight, and still looks quite airy!  The blocked piece is around 4 inches by 5.25 inches.  Not very large, but full of movement, and very light and drapy.

lily swatch

The motif featured is a variation of "Lily of the Valley" - with lots of nice Nupp stitches (basically little bobbles) interspersed with lacy YO loops, and an alternating Maple Leaf.  I worked these nupps with 5x wraps, but I think if I actually go forward with this I might do 7x or 9x just to make them extra full and textured.

My goal is to choose a traditional pattern and make a classic Haapsalu shawl from my own Ruttiger Fuzzybutt fiber... complete with a sewn on border, and the proper Haapsalu dimensions.  I'm guessing I will need somewhere around 1500 yards of thread to accomplish such a project, but that shouldn't be a big deal if I can finalize my fiber blend.  I'm not sure how much the thread will fuzz up, or whether that fuzzing will obscure the lace and the nupps.  I plan on abusing the swatch a little and then I'll gauge from there if the yarn will serve the purpose.

28. March 2011 10:46
by Jobo
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Yarn Candy Monday: Jaggerspun Zephyr!

28. March 2011 10:46 by Jobo | 0 Comments

zephyr 3 skein pile

There was a sale at Webs on some skeins of JaggerSpun Zephyr!  I have seen lots of lovely projects made with this nice silk blend laceweight, but of course, have never seen any of the yarn in person.  I would have liked to get a more plain color (like cream or white, or ecru even) but since the price was so good I figured it was worth getting a few skeins to try anyways.  You can buy this stuff on cones too... so at least now I'll know what to expect, and maybe I'll feel comfortable enough to buy a whole cone next time.

zephyr 3 skeinsit's really light and soft!

7. February 2011 12:05
by Jobo
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Yarn Candy Monday: not yarny so much...

7. February 2011 12:05 by Jobo | 0 Comments

haapsalu_shawlIn the last little bit... there hasn't been a lot of new yarn coming into the house... a few things here and there, but no real beauty skeins just waiting to be showcased.  So today, instead, I thought I would show you a new book that arrived in the mail last week! The Haapsalu Shawl:  A knitted Lace Tradition from Estonia

Quite honestly, this book is crazy!  Crazy good of course, but still quite intimidating.  I have been in love with Estonian lace from the moment I first saw it... and when I hear this book had been translated into English, I really couldn't help myself.

This isn't so much a pattern book, as an anthology of the traditional lace motifs and borders used in the very beautiful Haapsalu Shawls and Scarves of Estonia.  There are more than 100 beautiful lace designs charted out... from lilies of the valley with their lovely nupps, to Greta Garbo patterns, leaves, vines, butterflies, and so many more.  I have read each article, and flipped through the lace sections a dozen times already.  The beauty of the fine lace just takes my breath away.

Also, in the beginning of this Estonian Lace "Bible", there is a section describing the traditional shawl and scarf makeup.  It shows dimensions, proper arrangement, sample stitch counts, seaming diagrams, blocking instructions, yarn suggestions... all the things a knitter needs to make a *real* authentic Haapsalu Shawl.  Perfect for a wannabe like me... so I can someday try this.

I have chosen a few lace styles that I really love... and am making lots of mental notes about the shawl I want to make someday.  I've started looking for commercially available yarn, but will likely end up spinning my own, perhaps from Merino, or Cashmere Blend or something.  A girl can dream... can't she?

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