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Monday, September 7, 2015

Thunderstorm MKAL Shawl

This spring Mr. Ed gave me an iphone5. I am infamous for being stupid low-tech and not having a smart phone. But I wanted an iphone for the GPS feature as I was driving to Montreal to visit Robyn and didn't want to get lost! 
Because I am me, I still have my old "dumb" phone which I use as a phone and the iphone is for music, games, movies for the kids, directions and....instagram. This was NOT a good thing for me to discover and proved to be highly addictive. Mr. Ed keeps threatening to take my new toy away from me! :( 
I'm pretty good about leaving it alone when we're home and in the city, but at the cottage I get a bit lonely for adult conversation and it's proven to be a great way to see what friends and family are up to.  It's also a GREAT way to yarn shop and stalk my favourite knitting designers. 

One of the very first posts I read this summer was for a MKAL organized by Alicia Plummer of Two Little Plums. I fell madly in love with her Campside shawl a few months ago but had never knit a shawl or followed a chart and was struggling a little. So when I read "I have to say, I think you’re going to love your shawls. I love this pattern more than Campside, and that’s saying a LOT" on Alicia's instagram post, I knew I had to sign up! 

Drove the kids into town and popped into the local yarn store where I immediately zeroed in on this yarn: 
Cascade Yarns Heritage Silk Paints - 85% superwash wool and 15% silk. SO soft and luxurious and looks like a proper Thundercloud :) Colour is called "misty blue". 

 The MKAL actually started on June 12 so when I read about it I was already a few weeks behind on clues. Ever the stickler for deadlines (I like then, I just don't always make them!) I immediately cast on and got to work :) By July 8 I had finished "Stillness" (Stockingette) and "Winds" (Twisted Stockingette) phases (above) and the WHOLE time the weather at the cottage looked like this:

It just rained and rained and rained. I seriously questioned if working on a project called "Thunderstorm" was such a great idea!
 July 16 I finished Raindrops (above) and on July 17 finished "the brief pause".  This was a great clue - only four rows! I was catching up... and it was raining again. Bring on the Downpour! (below)
 Everyone on the Ravelry forum celebrated finishing this section so I knew it was going to be challenging .... it took the longest of the whole shawl and was a two week clue. That's how long it took me - with SERIOUS devotion each night, sitting with my charts and not letting anyone talk to me! I made a few mistakes and on the last row and had to tink back 291 stitches. Sigh... 

August 2 - finished "Fading Rain", which absolutely FLEW by (one night) after Downpour. It was the same charts as Raindrops so it was familiar territory.
 The last charted section was called Petrichor - "the smell of dust after the rain" and was a sort of lacey 2x2 ribbing. Not sure I loved the look, even though I loved the name. If I were to make again I might do a few more raindrops and then just do a straight rib. The final section "Earth" was a very welcome garter stitch border.

 And here is my finished Thunderstorm :)
 Even to photograph it I had to wait between rainfall, but I am thrilled with the end result!
 And I didn't have any wool soap with me at the cottage so I washed it in baby shampoo so it smells wonderful! I blocked it on the deck so it dried in no time and then I just carried it around the woods taking pictures!

It was such an interesting experience knitting with a KAL. I loved having the forum to read and check in with and I loved seeing everyone's finished shawls as they came off the needles. It was great having help and reading other people's questions and was incredible to see some of the modifications,  beadwork and cast-offs other (more experienced!) knitters did to make the project their own. Truly inspirational!

And just as this was finished up, some lovely knitter started a KAL for Campside
So there's hope for me yet ;)


Knit and Purl Mama said...

Wow, that knit up quickly! It's super nice. Looks great!

I heart my iPhone 5.... it has everything in one... are you still having issues with network/etc that you need 2 phones still?

Monica said...

it turned out beautifully!! I absolutely love the colour, it's a perfect match for a shawl called "Thunderstorm". I've never participated in an MKAL before. THe idea of not knowing what you are making....drives me crazy..LOL