Let the past sleep, but let it sleep in the sweet embrace of Christ, and let us go on into the invincible future with Him. (Oswalt Chambers)

Monday, April 03, 2006

Linen Swatches

Linen swatch for Elizabeth shawl, unwashedYarn: Louet Euroflax linen, fingering weight

Color: Gray

I've been swatching in preparation for knitting a linen Faroese shawl. (Yes, Catharina is done. Pictures as soon as I figure out where I have enough space to block it.)

Knitting with unwashed linen is like what I imagine it would be like to knit with waxed dental floss. It doesn't really want to make loops, but it will.

This is the unwashed Elizabeth swatch from Stahman's Shawls and Scarves, knit on #5 needles.

At this point I'm wondering how this yarn is going to wash. Could it possible get soft? Is this lace pattern going to look pretty? Are my stitches going to even out? Was this even a good idea? And, what am I going to do with two cones of fingering weight linen yarn if I don't like this better than I like it now?

Linen swatches for Elizabeth, Gracie, and Marialis shawlsLater - all is well. The swatches are soft and drapey after machine washing and drying.

I'm up for a linen shawl, just need to figure out which pattern and which needle size I'm going to use.

The upper left swatch is Elizabeth, knit on a#5. The solid part of this pattern has a striking knit/purl texture that doesn't show up well with the linen yarn. I do need to knit Elizabeth someday, but I think it will be in some other yarn.

The bottom swatch is Gracie, knit on a #4. I couldn't resist trying the edging on this swatch. Gracie is a pretty lace pattern that might be perfect for my first linen shawl because of being simple.

The rightmost swatch is Marialis, variation A, knit on #3. I love Feather and Fan/Old Shale. Although the results are lovely, the needle size is too small for a fingering weight shawl. Marialis will eventually get knit with a looser gauge and a soft, wooly yarn.

If I had to cast on this minute, it would be Gracie. But the swatching is fun. I may try a few more patterns before deciding.

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