28 May 2019

Last minute knitting!

Have you ever seriously under-estimated the amount of time it takes to knit something for that all-important event? It doesn't seem to matter what the event is, whether it's something for Christmas, a new baby or, as in my case, our daughter's wedding. In every situation, the last 24 hours seems to be 1 hour of sleep and 23 hours of knitting!

Yes, dear Anna and Andrew told us they were getting married a year-and-a-week ahead of time. We even knew the colour theme and I had chosen my dress months before... So why was it only ten days before that I decided I needed a wrap? There is no rational explanation. 

We live in Florida, the wedding was in Cornwall and we knew it would be 20ÂșC lower temperature than we were used to. You'd have thought that I could have predicted I would need some kind of shawl or wrap. There is no logic.

So it was that I found myself scouring the LoveKnitting website for suitable yarns. Fortunately, I quickly came upon the perfect colour in a yarn I have used before: Willow and Lark "Nest". I used this when I made the Grayswood Scarf a couple of years back and loved using it. I ordered the yarn with express shipping and, true to their word, the yarn arrived two days before our flight!

I skeined it up and washed it, then gently regretted doing that because now I couldn't make a start until it was dry! Still, I always like to pre-wash my yarns so I just had to sit on my hands until it was ready. I had decided to just do a straight re-make of a favourite wrap pattern of mine, the Scottswood Stole, so all I needed to do was check the gauge then make a start.

All went well until two days before the wedding when I temporarily forgot that I was knitting against a deadline and made the mistake of undoing about 20cm of knitting! This was to correct the tiniest of errors that only I would have noticed. Have you ever done that? The next day I could have kicked myself. The wrap was sooooo short now! 

I knitted furiously until the wee hours and then admitted defeat and cast off. I sewed in all the yarn tails then started tugging. I dampened it slightly then pulled and pulled both ends. I pinned it onto the hotel room floor, stretching it out like no self-respecting piece of knitwear should be treated. However, it worked and I found that if I held onto the ends tightly while I was wearing it, the wrap looked fine and did the job of keeping me warm!

The wedding was wonderful. Anna looked absolutely beautiful and you could not imagine a happier couple. It was a stunning day and everyone had picked up on their theme of pale blues, yellows and whites. Cornwall did its best to blow us all from one venue to the next, but the sun shone when it needed to and the photographs were lovely.

The next day, I undid the bound off edge and started adding more length to the wrap. The second event in the north was in a weeks' time and that gave me the perfect excuse to get this to the length it was supposed to be. The new couple went for a honeymoon in the Lake District and I sat on Cornish cliff-tops or in the gardens of stately homes and knitted happily. 

At last it was done and I could wear the shawl without having to tug it to be inches longer. If only I had had another week's notice! Ha!

Although I had used the Scottswood Stole pattern, it looked so different in this yarn! The original had been in baby alpaca with the lovely halo that brings. This yarn is still beautifully soft but much smoother. 

I love the way this came out in the Willow and Lark yarn, so I have added that as a new version in the pattern. You can find the newly updated version here. Now you can work the wrap in a Sportweight baby alpaca or a DK merino/cashmere!

Until next time,

Happy Knitting!


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