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Swatches and a Shawl Hanger

June 14, 2006

I’ve been spending some time with my stitch dictionaries sampling lace patterns for a wedding stole for my almost DIL, Sarah. We have decided to use Suri Elegance, 100% alpaca in natural white. It’s very soft and has a nice halo when knit up. We had the first dress fitting and took the swatches along to see how they would go with the dress.

(Note that the swatches aren’t discoloured as the photos would have you think – bad photographer that I am, I got my own shadow in the pictures).

These two are English Lace from Barbara Walker’s Second Treasury, and an unnamed lace from Gisella Klopper’s Beautiful Knitting Patterns, page 60. The Klopper pattern looks much better in a heavier yarn.

Diamond Fantasia from Barbara Walker’s Third Treasury.

Frost Flowers from BW1

Dayflower from BW2

Dayflower seemed to compliment the dress the best of all. Frost Flowers was too busy, Diamond Fantasia too geometric and English Lace has too many single strand floats that could catch on the antique bracelet that Sarah plans to wear. So Dayflower it will be. Now to decide on edge treatments. I think more swatching is in store.

For some time now I have been trying to find a way to hang my shawls on the wall without damaging them. I had imagined using something like a very wide pants hanger where the fabric would be sandwiched between two pieces of wood. I bought a lovely piece of finished Brazilian Cherry wood and talked to a local woodworker about what I wanted to do. He suggested using magnets. Magnets! Brilliant! He countersunk magnets into the back of the wood. The shawl goes over the magnet, and a second magnet goes over the shawl, holding it in place. He used a router to cut a slot along the top that makes it easy to hang on two small brakets screwed into the wall.

And voila, the shawl hanger in action:

17 Comments leave one →
  1. June 15, 2006 6:37 am

    What a great idea! I hung my Legends of the Shetland Seas on the wall. White stole, white wall. So I got a length of purple cloth and draped it over the hanger, then folded the stole in half and draped it over the cloth. Of course that doesn’t work for triangles…

  2. June 15, 2006 7:21 am

    What a great idea! And it’s easy to get it down if you want to wear it.
    Those swatches are beautiful – the final stole is going to be stunning. Lucky bride!

  3. Becky permalink
    June 15, 2006 8:08 am

    That shawl hanger was brilliant!!!! And magnets – what an awesome idea!!
    The fact that you hung your shawl makes me think of other things to do with different lace knitted pieces… as curtain or decorative piece like what you have done. Brilliant!!!

  4. June 15, 2006 8:12 am

    The shawl looks lovely hung up like that. But keep an eye and make sure the moths don’t get at it. It can happen (ask me how I know this — handspun lace shawl draped over a table like a tablecloth… no more.)

  5. June 15, 2006 8:39 am

    Awesome lace knitting!! And that shawl hanger is sheer brillance!!! I just happen to be married to a woodworker……….hmmmmm…..

  6. June 15, 2006 8:59 am

    Your shawl looks beautiful over the mantle. Not that there weren’t more clues, but it sure says, “Knitter Lives Here.”
    I look forward to seeing your wedding stole progress!

  7. Sam permalink
    June 15, 2006 10:52 am

    Mel, that’s a brilliant idea! It surely beats mine hung over a coat hanger hanging off a shelf in my kitchen! ๐Ÿ˜‰ I’ve been swatching lace, too – how funny – I’ve been looking at Frost Flowers for awhile, but think you’re right on the money with the dayflower. Beautiful work!

  8. Helle from Denmark permalink
    June 15, 2006 11:25 am

    Ohh, very good idea!!!!:-)))
    And and and….just wonder if I missed something. Do you own a shop, or is that private stash…Yummy!*GRIN* It looks very cozy…….and this grey stuff……yarn, or fibers i the basket..Looks delicious too!!:-)))

  9. June 15, 2006 11:35 am

    D’oh! Magnets! So brilliant, so simple. Why didn’t we think of that earlier? And the swatches are absolutely gorgeous! I can’t wait to see what the finished shawl looks like. That’s one VERY lucky bride!

  10. June 17, 2006 6:09 pm

    WOW!!! What an amazing invention to hang shawls!!! I finished the STS shawl about a year ago and it’s beautiful (round (60″)) and when I went to a local frame place to see what they’d charge to hang/frame it for me it was $400 and up!!! No way – so it’s folded away waiting for a way to be seen – this idea is fantastic – I might have to nudge the husband along ๐Ÿ™‚

  11. June 17, 2006 9:49 pm

    Shawl looks gorgeous Mel! Love the swatches.

  12. June 19, 2006 1:27 am

    I’ve worked up both frost flowers and dayflower as stoles with a simple slip 1, k2 edging. It curls to the back a bit and gives a nice, plain finish. You can add a bit of purl or do a slip 1, k1, garter 1 for a bit more definition. Will you do a provisional cast-on at the center and knit down, knit the two ends toward each other, or just go from one end to the other and not worry about directional flow?

  13. June 19, 2006 7:09 am

    The wedding stole looks like it is going to be gorgeous. And, I love your shawl hanger idea. It’s a perfect way to display your shawls.

  14. June 21, 2006 1:19 pm

    Such pretty lace, the English Lace and Dayflower were my top picks, the Dayflower because I haven’t seen it around.

  15. Lisa, Mike, Jack, Della permalink
    July 8, 2006 11:03 am

    BRILLIANT!!! I love this idea and THANK YOU for the hanger tips!

  16. July 8, 2006 10:38 pm

    This is absolutely, totally cool! Love the hanger and envy the entire room! What a great idea!

  17. August 7, 2006 8:57 am

    GREAT IDEA!! I will get my woodworkin’ hubby on the job. I was wondering how to keep the wrap I knit (River, Rowan, 35, I think) from getting wrinkled in the drawer or out-of-shape on the hanger. The lace swatches make me want to knit lace–they are beautiful.

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