Silver Threads

a knitting blog with occasional side trips

Playing with Wingspan

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Ever since I’d knitted my first Wingspan last year, I’d wanted to explore the design a bit further. The pattern was simple enough: garter stitch wedges shaped with short rows, each wedge offset slightly from the previous wedge. With the addition of each new wedge, the shawlette began to curve. The original had a J shape to it. I wanted to know if adding more would bring it into more of a C shape (I was pretty sure that it would), and if a C-shape would drape more easily around my shoulders. The Wingspan pattern is written for fingering weight yarn. The designer has included stitch counts for DK and worsted-weight yarns, but they’re meant to make a shawlette of about the same finished size as the original fingering weight one. I figured, if I was making something out of worsted weight yarn, I wanted something more shawl-like, so I used the same stitch count as the fingering weight version.

Wingspan shawl in magenta, gray, and black yarn.

This shawl has ten sections instead of eight, and yes, it does curve around more. What I hadn’t factored in was that since it’s bigger overall, the inner curve is also bigger, and that affects how it drapes when I put it on. If I wanted to tackle it a third time—and I don’t!—I’d work on trying to tighten up that curve while leaving the attractive jagged outer edge alone.

A worsted-weight shawl certainly uses more yarn than a fingering-weight shawlette (duh). I used about 6½ balls of Plymouth Boku on this puppy (645 yards/590 meters), and it has a comforting, warm heft to it as it settles around your shoulders. Any shawl pin I use with it will have to be sturdy! I added another two rows of garter stitch to the top band, partly because I didn’t want to end on a red stripe (not my favorite color in the colorway), but also to support the extra weight. Too bad Boku is a somewhat scratchy yarn—yeah, I’ve been trying it on in summer over T-shirts, and it’s just not pleasant against bare skin. Of course, this is more of a winter-weight shawl anyway and next winter I can give it a true workout. For now, I am putting it away and flinging myself into slightly lighter knitting for the summer (Ack! How much time left before the state fair?!).

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