In previous years I didn't really adapt my knitting to the summer weather. I've been know to keep on knitting with aran weight wool all through the warmer weather. This summer my habits were put to the test because we had an unusually extreme heat wave, part of which I spend in France, where we spend large periods of time outside on the road. I had to rethink my strategy a bit. Just in time for the heat I remembered that I had the perfect yarn in my stash for the perfect project: A hap for Harriet by Kate Davies, in lace weight wool.
I used the recommended Old Maiden Aunt Shetland 2 ply for my Hap, which is a heavy laceweight. The yarn feel soft, but also quite sturdy. It results in a light but warm shawl. Perfect for the beginning of Autumn. It was the first time I used this yarn but I'm really happy with the result and I think that, for now, it has taken over the favourites spot from OMA Merino Superwash 4ply, which I used for Follow Your Arrow II.
The pattern is quite simple, one of those mindless projects, which came in really handy whilst travelling in the summer. On top of that Kate has provided instructions for knitting from charts and written instructions. Really, the pattern couldn't be more clear. I mostly used the written instructions. The pattern recommends weighing your ball of yarn in between working on it, to make the most of your skein. I know that some knitters regularly use their kitchen scales to weigh their knitting, but I never did so before. Now that I've used it for this project though, I'm going to do it more often. I even upgraded to a better, more accurate kitchen scale to do the job.
I loved watching the magic of blocking on this one. Like all lace knits, the shawl was quite frumpy while working on it, and I spend quite some time explaining to bystanders how the end result would look all big and bloomy, instead of what I had in my hand. Which more often than not resulted in a hazy look directed at me, but, well what can a poor knitter do to against such disbelief? The shawl grew enormously after a good blocking session, and took in a lot of space on the floor (to my cats' pleasure).
I'm very happy with the end result, both the pattern and the yarn were a huge success. I know that I will wear this a lot throughout autumn, winter and spring. My first hap was definitely a success, and I'm sure I'll make a more in the future, perhaps a more traditional hap?
The pattern for this hap was made by the fabulous Kate Davies. For those who, like me, are avid fans of Kate's work, today brought a joyful occasion to keep a hand over the F5 button while having Kate's website opened. At noon exactly, Kate officially launched her own yarn brand, Buchaille. It's a sports-weight made of Scottish wool, and I'm looking forward to see it in person. I will keep you posted once the yarn and the goodies when they arrive.
So, how was your summer knitting?
I hope September has been treating you all well,