Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Two Days of Blocking

I had thought about writing a tutorial about blocking, but to be honest, I'm still a noob at it. Instead I'll just point you over to the Yarn Harlot's blog, where I (mostly) learned how to block from. Any of these three posts will tell you pretty much everything you need to know about the basics of blocking.

The Knit Picks blog also has several good posts and videos about blocking sweaters, lace, hats, etc. They even have information on building a Lace Blocking Frame

I have to say, despite the stress of "Am I doing this right?/ Am I being too aggressive?/ Is that line straight?" and repeatedly either stabbing myself with and/or dropping my pins, I quite enjoy blocking. It's kind of fun. Especially with lace. The only thing to pay attention to, is if you step on the towel you wrap you wet knitting in (seen here) while wearing socks, your socks will get wet. If you're barefoot, your feet will get wet. Ask me how I know. Just don't ask how many pairs of socks I go through when blocking.

I blocked my Milk Run Shawl and my Lonely Winter Tree Shawl over two days, as the table I use can barely hold one shawl.

The Lonely Winter Tree Shawl opened up wonderfully. It grew dramatically in size blocking to an amazing 6 feet x 3 feet size. The yarn is super soft and so very warm. I had to mix dye-lots since I bought the third skein almost a year after the first two, but thankfully it's not all that noticeable. I loved the Lonely Tree Shawl I made in blue, but if it's possible I think I might like this one even more. It's huge without being overly bulky or heavy and it's great to wrap up in.

The Milk Run Shawl grew a bit in size. If you count the blocks, it's just about 6 feet wide and 3 feet deep. The yarn is soft and airy and provides a wonderful warmth. My only problem is the ruffles. They're virtually non-existent now that it's blocked. I tried pinning them into a more ruffled shape and I'm glad I did or I have a feeling they'd be completely flat. They wanted to be flat when I took it out of the water. The ruffles were my favorite part of the shawl so I'm a bit disappointed in it. That doesn't mean I'll start treating it like the red-headed stepchild, just that I'll keep hoping that the ruffles will have a sudden change of heart and return to the shawl.

pinned ruffles

P. S. I'm fond of watching Doctor Who, Battleship and/or Warehouse 13 while pinning. That or singing whatever song is stuck in my head loudly and off key.  I think it's an important part of the blocking process.

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