November 6, 2013

IMG_0196Once upon a time, I briefly shared a phone number or at least a very similar number with a hard working woman called Flame.  I would get calls in the wee hours from urgent sounding gentlemen wanting to speak to Flame. Needless to say, I changed my number fairly quickly. Every now and again, I wonder about Flame and hope she is having a nice cup of tea somewhere.

IMG_0202I thought of Flame again as I knit this shawl, for what else could you call this colouring. The pattern is Shetland Lace Triangle Shawl by Evelyn Clark.  I cast on for My Sister’s Knitter Fall into Fall KAL.

fallintofallEven though it is spring here, I was remembering the flaming slopes of the woods around New Lanark in Scotland where we were last Autumn. As I was knitting up memories of the burning reds, yellows and golds of the trees turning towards winter, the Blue Mountains, North of Sydney caught fire. Suddenly all these nostalgic embers turned ferocious, wild and threatening and for a while knitting in flames became a little disturbing, not as disturbing of course as if you were actually living there.  Mine was of the existential disturbance.

IMG_0205But now in the aftermath of fire and knitting,  it is just a shawl again…and proudly made from my own handspun.

The fibre is a Polwarth and silk blend.  It was hand dyed by Wendy Dennis whose family first bred Polwarths in the early years of Victorian settlement and who continue to improve the breed.  Polwarth is as fine as Merino, but the sheep have not been bred for skin folds and are not mulesed.  This makes Polwarth a pretty good alternative to Merino if animal welfare is a concern for you. The Dennis family have also bred for coloured fleece and Polwarth comes in range of colours including the most delicious of dark silver greys.

IMG_0212This yarn is three ply and amazingly the colour changes are clear but not too stripey.  My handspun is often on the underplied side which makes it perfect for lace knitting. Geeky deets are ravelled here.