Monday, 25 July 2011

Shawl - finished

Hurray - I finally got around to blocking the shawl. Here is a photo of my eldest modelling it for me. I haven't had the chance to wear it yet, but will definitely try at some point over the summer. So, a few of you were wanting to know how I was going to block this piece - well here's my secret weapon...
 Yes, foam alphabet jigsaw mats from Argos!!  Perfect as they pack away fairly compactly and you can piece them together into whichever shape you need. I got the idea from Little Tin Bird so thanks Heather for blogging about this a while ago - I have tried it out and it works!
 So I laid the mats out to the required size and then began pinning out the shawl, starting in the middle and working my way out. You can see that I have pinned the lower two rows but not the top, which still looks a bit curly around the edges - it kind of reminds me of stale sandwiches (bizarre, I know!). Please bear in mind that I did this at gone 9pm a few days ago so I was fairly tired and not extremely accurate. I'm pretty sure I could have spent a good hour making sure everything was lined up to the nearest millimetre but I'm really not that fussy.  Anyway, once it's all pinned out you need to spray it with a pump action garden spray bottle filled with cold water. Spray it until it's damp but not soaking. Then leave until completely dry - 24 hours or sooner if it's warm weather - mine was pretty much dry over night but I left it for longer just to be on the safe side. Whilst it was sat there drying, I got a little concerned about whether the fluorescent colour of the foam mat would leech into the yarn. But it didn't and I'm hoping that's because the foam mats just wouldn't do that, but it may have been because the water didn't soak straight through the yarn. Next time, I may lay a sheet over the foam mats, just in case.
 Then I got some lovely little helpers to remove the pins - they really enjoyed this for about thirty seconds and then I finished off!

And this is the finished article - it's just long enough to wrap round my shoulders and cross over at the front and it doesn't feel too delicate to wear on a regular basis. I get the feeling it might get some use in the winter too. Not bad for some yarn found at the charity shop for £4!

Another WIP finished. So many more that need some extra attention. It doesn't help when I start two new crochet projects in a fortnight! Well, there should be plenty of time during the summer hols to make some progress - I have a crochet meet with Alison from Gingercat on Friday. Our kids get on like a house on fire so hopefully they will run around having fun and burning off some energy so we can sit down with a cup of tea and crochet, preferrably outside in some sunshine or at least without rain. Before then we have John Lewis coming to fit some blinds in our lounge, a trip out with Nan and Grandpops (hi Mum!) and a fair bit of mooching around at home, enjoying some free time and relaxation. Hope you are also enjoying whatever free time you have at the moment too. Will post again soon about some updates around the house. xx


  1. Beautiful! Where is that pattern from Julia?

  2. Oh that is just beautiful x
    What a fab idea about the jigsaw mat, must remember that.
    enjoy your crochet get-together :o)
    j x

  3. That is so lovely - you are so clever it looks so complicated!

  4. That is very gorgeous. I feel I need a shall in my life!

  5. Woah, that's a bit gorgeous! I LOVE it and what a genius idea with the foamy blocks. Oh no, another idea I'll be stealing from I type this, I'm peeling paint off my fingers - I've just blogged about how I blame you!
    Emily x

  6. Great idea with the foam mats. Lovely shawl it looks really complicated and bargain wool as well, well done.