For the last two months, between bouts of Christmas knitting, I’ve been working away steadily on my Icarus Shawl. It’s a pattern by Miriam Felton who has made some fantastic shawl patterns, including the Adamas shawl which i made last summer.
I worked on it extensively over the last week or two, trying hard to finish it by the end of the year. I almost finished it while staying at Dr K’s house after Christmas but some errata discovered quite late in the piece conspired against me. That’s a rather sad tale, actually. I was all set to do the last couple of rows (we’re talking 500+ stitches) on the road from Wollongong to Canberra but I discovered things weren’t right and in fact spent the nearly 2 hour trip home in a parallel universe where you knit a shawl backwards. I finished it finally on new year’s day, at which point I had only the cast off row to go.
Today, Alice came to visit and after lunch, feeling full and sleepy, we sat under the shade of a tree in the front yard and Alice kindly posed in my shawl.
I think putting Alice and my shawl together was a smart move. They suit each other beautifully.
But obviously we had to try for some full length shots in order to see just how huge this shawl is. It’s approximately 2m by 1m and I still have a quarter of the skein of Helen’s Lace left!
I started Icarus on 1 Nov 2009. I really wanted something good to kick off A Long Lacy Summer. I was worried it would take me the whole summer but you know, that first part which is almost entirely stocking stitch doesn’t take that long. A few summer events like BBQs or pub gatherings and a car trip or two and I had it licked. It’s the perfect way to get some social and lace knitting combined.
The lace part is not hard, just long. Those long rows do go on a bit but it all builds nicely and the result is worth it. I’ll make another icarus in the future and I’d happily use Helen’s Lace again (the colour is Cranberry). It was an awfully expensive skein of lace yarn but it was worth every cent. I loved it. Delicious is the best way to describe it. And as an item to wear, it’s gorgeous. It sits lightly, and it’s large. It is lovely for wrapping completely around your shoulders and feeling warm without weight which is pretty much what I’ve decided is the point of a shawl. Maximum warmth with minimum weight. Although sometimes you want something that’s light on a cool evening, too, not just in winter. I wore my Myrtle shawl to a wedding on new year’s eve and it was cool that night because it had been raining and it was the perfect weight.
One tip, if you want to make this, either buy the updated version from Miriam’s website or make sure you check out the errata, if you already have the pattern via Interweave because the original printing in both Interweave knits and the book of collected Interweave patterns, have the incorrect details for the final edging pattern.
And I think we’ll close with one last photo of Alice posing with Icarus. Doesn’t she look happy?