06 October 2008

Peacock Feathers Shawl FO

My mom has always used a fountain pen. Since her high school years, an old fashioned fountain pen has been her weapon of choice for all non--check writing purposes. When I was a little girl, her favorite ink color was peacock blue. For years, there was a pot of peacock blue ink in one of the drawers of the ugly green chest that was in the kitchen. She would tip the closed jar slightly so that ink would collect in the reservoir near the top. Then she would dip the nib of the pen into the reservoir and pull the little lever-thingy on the side of the pen, drawing the ink into the barrel. Eventually, she discovered fountain pens that used cartridges filled with ink.

But always there was the peacock blue ink - kind of teal, kind of turquoise. That color will always be associated with my mother's steady, beautiful hand.

So when I first saw the Peacock Feather's Shawl pattern from Fiddlesticks Knitting, I knew I had to make it for her. And since her 60th birthday was a couple of weeks ago, I had the perfect excuse.

PF shawl blocking

I ordered the yarn (Jagger Spun Merino laceweight in... get this... "Peacock"!!) and pattern from Sarah's Yarns. She just happened to be having a sale on Fiddlesticks patterns at just the right time. I started the shawl on 1 July.

PF shawl modeled front
"I Pledge Allegiance..."

I have worked on other things since then, so I figure I spent about 2 months knitting on it. It's one of those patterns that starts in the center of the top of the shawl and gets wider with each right side row. There were 495 stitches on the last row. 495!!

PF shawl modeled

The final width ended up being roughly 72 inches, which was a big surprise. As written, the pattern is supposed to give you a 80-something inch shawl. I used the recommended size 4 needles. But, I didn't do a swatch, and since I am such a tight knitter, I ended up with a smaller shawl.

PF shawl detail

The smaller size worked out really well because my mom is a small woman. I was a bit worried that it would end up too large for her. The final size is just right for her.

I really liked this pattern. I didn't run into any problems with it. There are a ton of charts (9 altogether, I think), which I much prefer to written-out directions. And the charts are only for the first half of the shawl. Once you pass the halfway point, you knit the same charted row again, reversing all of the k2togs and ssks to slant in the opposite directions. Sounds complicated, but it wasn't too hard to follow. It's actually really intuitive. I would definitely knit another Fiddlesticks pattern. They're really well written.

Here's the wrap-up:
Pattern: Peacock Feather's Shawl from Fiddlesticks Knitting
Yarn: JaggerSpun Super Fine Merino Laceweight, in Peacock
Needles: size 4 29" and 32" Addi Turbo Lace needles
Started: 7/1/08
Finished: 10/3/08
Mods: none. This pattern is not one that you can alter. It pretty much needs to be knitted as written.

And mom? She loved it. (And so did Grandma. I think I'm going to have to make a shawl for her sometime soon.)

PF shawl hanging

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Blogger Trillian42 said...

Oh, it's gorgeous! I've seen that pattern, and I think it's definitely on my to-do list. I LOVE the color, and the reason behind it!

7:52 PM  
Blogger weezalana said...

That is absolutely STUNNING! Really beautiful!

12:47 AM  
Blogger IrishgirlieKnits said...

Absolutely stunning! And so thoughtful! Your mom will love it!

3:01 AM  
Blogger Jo said...

It's so beautiful(and you hair is getting long!)

7:47 AM  
Blogger Brena said...

That is soooooo sooooo beautiful! And your blocking skills are top notch! I love the story behind the shawl what a wonderful gift.

8:37 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Holy crap, it's gorgeous! Your mom is seriously very lucky. Now I want one... and I cannot imagine myself actually wearing a triangular shawl. Nice work!

11:10 AM  
Anonymous woolcat said...

Wow, gorgeous!!

1:10 PM  
Blogger kemtee said...

That's just fabulous, Bev. Really. Lovely work.

5:36 PM  
Blogger kiki said...

Wow! I am getting married in June (2009) and my theme is peacocks... This would be perfect! But I can't knit... Well I can knit and pearl sorta, LOL
Would you be interested in making one and selling it?

9:48 AM  

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