Friday, June 09, 2006

Big Block! ... and I don't mean the kind in a truck. I finished up the perfection leaf lace last night and grafted the ends this morning. I really lucked out with the way the pattern lined up on the right row- but somehow I just could not get the zig zag to graft uninterrupted. I finally decided that the problem was not in my method of grafting, but that I may have made a mistake way back at the start of the edging before I really knew the pattern, and before I could have even understood the error. I figured that I just had to "let it go" which I did with ease as that is how this whole project has been- an excercise in relaxation. In fact- I'm feeling a little bit lost now that I'm done- I don't have my bunchy orange lap dog to take with me where ever I go.

I don't know if the method I used to block this has been done- or if I made it up- but it worked for me. My son said it was like a drum. Originally I was going to tape the paperclips to the wooden floor- but the tape did not stick well enough- so I used carpet. Unblocked my Pi had a radius of 33 inches so I added 1/3 more and then ten more inches for the stretching.

First I placed a paper clip in the stitch of each point. I found out that I had 94 repeats. I had to handle the shawl carefully from that point on because the paperclips wanted to snag any material which rubbed it. I marked the clips in 1/4s with tape. In hindsight I thought that it might be a good idea to add stitch markers as I knit so that the correct stitch would be automatically marked rather than having to find it- these would also not snag and would provide a strong pull and are not very expensive to nip out later with some wire cutters.

Using a cord for a radius I divided the carpet into four quarters and placed paperclips 24, 23, 24, 23 spaced in the quarters. Luckily my handwidth made a good measure for spacing. It's not precise- but hey... theme. I just jabbed the paperclip into the looped pile of the carpet- then I laced the whole thing with some slippery kite string and adjusted a few times. My son was a great help during this process.

I'll admit that I am going to miss the texture of the unblocked pi- but it photographs better than it looks in 3d. In anxious to see how the severely blocked shawl will react after it is released from it's gridle. In the end the shawl grew over 20 inches.


Kat said...

WOW!!! That is really beautiful!

You definitely have a shawl to be proud of.

EvaLux said...

Hmmm... looks like you've found something to block big round shawls... how about I send you mine hahahaha. It is simply gorgeous!

Still love that gorgeous orange color... and I suddenly remembered that I have a yarn in a very similar color!!!

Cheers Eva

The Purloined Letter said...

What a great idea! And what a beautiful shawl!

I'm knitting the original pattern pi and may take you up on the blocking method. Thanks!