Estonian Lace Scarf

I finished a recent knitting project: a scarf. It’s blazing hot right now, so hot that I completed the last of the knitting with my hands directly in front of the fan (it’s impossible to knit with sweaty hands), so this will probably not get an inaugural wearing until cooler weather.

IMG_1707This was made from one skein of yarn, which I bought in York on the day of my PhD viva as a celebratory purchase. It’s definitely the nicest and most expensive yarn I’ve ever worked with, a merino/silk blend locally hand-dyed. And ooh! It was worth every penny. Like most knitters, I learned to knit with inexpensive acrylic yarn from the craft store, but since branching out into good wools I see what I was missing. This wool also has a smell, which I didn’t notice while I was knitting, but when I tried the finished product around my neck, I realised that it has a sweet, sheepy, haybale scent.

I did try my hand at designing a lace pattern to knit with this, but decided I just don’t have enough experience yet to design a knitting pattern except by random trial and error, so I decided on a hybrid approach, taking stitch patterns from a book but planning the layout myself. Both designs are Estonian, from a book called Knitted Lace of Estonia, the two ends comprised of a lace edging pattern and the main part a design called ‘ligonbery’. So I feel that the overall result is unique, even if the actual stitch patterns aren’t my own.

IMG_1712This project was also my travelling project for our recent holiday. Now that knitting is licit on planes again (it wasn’t for a while after 9/11), I like to travel with a new project. And I felt the pale green-blue, with its variegated shades, and the undulating lines of the lace pattern perfectly reflected the colour of the sea in the shallows.


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