I’ve been wanting to try knitting lace for a while and after looking at hundreds of patterns, I decided on the Swallowtail Lace Shawl pattern by Evelyn Clark. It’s been made by thousands of people already so I figured the instructions must be pretty good. Despite good instructions, the shawl turned out to be the most challenging garment I have knit to date. It took me several tries to even get it going plus a switch to a lighter colored yarn (Malabrigo lace in Bobby Blue) for better visibility before I started to succeed. Unusually for me, I found that I had to knit this in complete silence. No TV, no radio, no music, no talking and it often took me half an hour to get across one row. There was lots of counting and recounting of stitches and undoing rows despite liberal life-lining. Many thanks to another use who created a chart of how many stitches I should have after each row! Most challenging were something called a nupp (rhymes with soup, not cup). Nupps are the invention of the devil Seriously. Who ever though that it was a good idea to create a little bobble by purling through 5 stitches at once? It ultimately wasn’t possible for me and I had to use a cheater method which worked better, though still slowed me down a lot. For all this trouble, the nupp stitch only created a small round bump of yarn that was barely visible on the finished shawl (see the photo below). Next time, I would use beads which would be a lot faster and more visible. But I can say I have tried nupps and now I don’t have to do them ever again! 🙂
Despite my complaining, I do love the shawl, so I guess it was all worth it! One is enough though.