I figure sooner or later everything gets blocked. For me its usually later. I make it, put it together, wear it and then after a while I block it. Everything has to get washed - sooner or later. But there are things that I knit that won't reveal their true beauty until they are blocked. Sometimes its a cable that needs to be flattened to be seen, or a beret that needs a pie plate to take shape, other times its a lace that remains scrunchy until its opened up. I've only made a handful of lace things so far and I have blocked them all, except the socks.
Ishbel (by Ysolda Teague) is a lace scarf or shawl. It has points on the edge. My first fancy lace project with points! It's yummy but needs to be blocked sooner then later, like before it can be worn. I've never blocked anything that I had to pin into shape. Special tools and equipment were needed for such an undertaking. So after a little knitting in the park yesterday, Susie and I strolled down to the Lion Brand Yarn Studio on 15th Street (just West of 5th Ave) to pick up a blocking kit. It contains straight wires in an assortment of sizes, 2 flexible wires for curves, stainless steel T pins and a yard stick. As soon as I got home I washed Ishbel in Eucalan and laid her out on a large towel on the dining room table. First I ran the wires along the edges, in and out - in and out. Through the straight edge and through each and every tip. Then I pinned her down and straightened the angles of the wires and pinned them down too. It had a shape now, and every detail could be seen. Then the hard part - waiting for this afternoon to unpin my little beauty. Tada! Here she is . . .I like the design very much. But i think its a little small for my taste so I am making another in a larger gauge. Size 8 /5mm needles and Lion Brand Superwash Merino in Cayenne. It will be great for winter. It has inspired me to think about making a pattern of my own design in this shape. I already have the yarn for it.
Susie and I went up to Annie and Company last week, a yarn and needle work store on Madison off 93rd. Our favorite LYS employee, Alyssa (manager of the former Point on Bedford) is now working there. They have great yarn and what a variety! (Only they don't carry Cascade - Susie's favorite all purpose brand) While we were there knitting I picked up two skeins of ArtYarns Ultramerino4 in denim blues. I love blue, all of them. This is the yarn I'm saving for my design. I'll let y'all know when its done. Hopefully I'll learn how to post patterns before the summers end -