Last December I was commissioned to knit an "IN DREAMS" shawl by Susan Pandorf (you can find her full pattern under that link).
The pattern calls for yarn from Unique Sheep and some 5000 beads... It was a challenge!
Let me show you my version first and then let you in on some details.
In Dreams Shawl (as knitted by me):
and one more view:
The yarn was The Unique Sheep Peacock set (50/50 Tussah Silk and Merino, total~1300 yards). The yarn comes in 4 skeins that are "almost solid" colors and compliment each other but definitely different. The shawl is knitted top down, so you can see that the fisr skein was in a green hue, followed by green-blue, then was blue-purple, and the final skein was in a purple-violet color wave. Below is a image of this yarn set from The Unique Sheep's website
Working with this yarn was an absolute pleasure, the colors, the quality, the feel - absolutely awesome!
The pattern however was a little scary - you can flip through my blog and see that I knit a LOT of lace - but this pattern was a definite challenge even for me:
For starters, it has 30 (!!!!) pages.
Granted, most of it is a written version of 9 (NINE!!!) charts that make up this pattern.
I am a chart reader, so I printed out only 9 pages.
Secondly, the the pattern calls for 5000 seed beads that are knitted on using a crochet hook method . Basically you have to stop your knitting 5000 times to pick a bead on a hook, pick the stitch off the needle, transfer the bead onto a stitch and then place the stitch back to a knitting needle.
Repeat 5000 time and you swear never to work with beads again!
There is also a very specific way the pattern directs to do a switch between two skeins of yarn....
Let me stop here :).
It is my understanding that this shawl was developed as a mystery KAL over 9 months (knit along project when every month you receive the next "clue") - that explains the 9 charts.
This shawl is spectacular! It has a very dramatic flare - very, very pretty colors,
but it took me over 4 weeks working exclusively and you can probably sense that I am sick of it.
I guess if I had 9 months to work on this project, I might have felt differently.
Anyway, it gave me an opportunity to try the Unique Sheep's lace sets - and I loved it! but I will not knit another IN DREAMS for while... may be only in nightmares...