women of a certain age are like sunflowers; they know how to turn their faces to the sun.

Thursday, December 9, 2010


"Men perish because they cannot join the beginning with the end."


We are coming to the end of the 0ne year and the beginning of the next, so the above quote seems particularly apt this time of year.

I was actually looking for a quote on persistence.

I have spent the last two days immersed in Herbert Niebling's wonderful designs, along with those of other German lace doily & tablecloth knitters. Yes, I know most of them are not available in English, but they are charted and they are such masterpieces, I wanted to learn from them.

With the aid of an on line translator and a lot of patience, I am swatching and learning oh so much. the charts look nothing like the final piece. They are complex, visually exciting, and intimidating.

When I saw this motif in a set of curtains, I knew I had to adapt it for Mithril.

This is the yarn I am using for my model: Filature Di Crosa Giolello: a lovely laceweight mohair with a gold filament. You can also get it in silver if you prefer.

Originally repeated as an edging, I split it in half and subdivided it. By flipping it diagonally, I designed a really special closure panel for the vest. Beading will be concentrated in this area.

I added to the lace openwork to curve upward into a neckline & added a placket that curves around the front and top. This might seem easy, but figuring out where to add the stitches to achieve this result took twelve hours & three different swatches in some stash yarn I had. (I didn't want to waste any more of the real yarn in experimenting)

You can really see the diagonal nature of the motif in this yarn. The diagonal line will continue in stockinette for the front opening & round its way to the back.

Now that this part is done, I am moving on to designing a complementary design for the back, either at the hem or yoke (haven't decided yet- weigh in through the comments if you have an opinion)

This is the final design for the Fellowship of the Ring Series. Even as I am finishing this final design, I am firmly ensconced in initial design work for the next leg of our journey.

The Two Towers

Mystery KAL
In Dreams

triangular shawl based on Galadriel's Crown
in Unique Sheep Gradience


(one dollar of each purchase goes to Knitters Without Borders)

February 2011 - Sign ups open December 15th

Coming April 2011 - Sign ups open March 1st

eight patterns, cost $56, if purchased separately

Helm's Deep (shoulder warmer in Rowan Lima)
Emyn Muil ( cabled lace kerchief in MadelineTosh Lace)

Ringwraith (lace stole in Blue Moon Geisha)

Tree Beard (lace smoke ring in Filatura's Giollelo)
Balrog (mosaic cowl in String Theory Caper Sock)

Rohan (fair isle cape in Knit Picks Pallete)

Eowyn (twisted stitch. lace up gauntlets in Woolen Rabbit sock )

Elven Woods (lace ruana in Unique Sheep Gradience)

Sign ups for the Mystery Shawl KAL open on December 15th. And though sign ups for the series won't open until March 1st, I am offering through Christmas, at the request of some of my knitters...

Sunflower Designs gift certificate
good for the entire Two Towers series
includes In Dreams Mystery KAL

Purchasers will receive a gift certificate in the form of a pdf, which can be printed out for wrapping & placing under the tree.

So, those of you who wish to put an entire year's worth of happy knitting on your Christmas list, can now do so. Button is on the sidebar, and I will try to get something up on RAV in the next few days.

And now I had better skedaddle; time's a wastin' & I need to get Mithril & In Dreams out to my test knitters.

Later gators...


DawnMarie said...

So many beautiful colours and yarns Susan. You truly are very talented. I hopefully will be as accomplished as you one day too.xx

Donna Lee said...

I am looking forward to another mystery kal. Evenstar was my first and I enjoyed it so much that I'll be there for the next one!

Ebonraven said...

I've never done a Mystery KAL, but i think I will have to do this one. I was so horribly disappointed not to have gotten to do Evenstar (and more so after I got to SEE Evenstar!) I can't be last this time! ;)

SovereignCrux said...

May I just roll around in your yarn stash? lol I always miss your destashing sales and to think you chose to get rid of those yarns makes me curious as to what wonders you kept! <3 These are wonderful yarns you photographed here!

Sandra La Knitalian said...

re: Emyn Muil ( cabled lace kerchief in MadelineTosh Lace)

Stunning capture of a beautiful yet dark landscape. simply breath-taking!!