Do I or don’t I?
So, long time no see! Right, this is me, holding my hands up to say I am going to be more pro active with this blog, and to encourage me in this I will be documenting my first foray into the world of the Westknits MKAL.
I only properly started knitting just after my mum passed away in September 2018, and I only entered the wonderful world of the online and YouTube world of knitting once the first lockdown began in March 2020, so last years Slipstraveganza was the first time I’d seen or heard about the Westknits MKAL’s.
At the time I still felt very much a novice at knitting and knitting a Stephen West Shlanket was just too much for me, especially with the pressure I would put on myself for finishing on time each week. So I sat back and watched all my favourite podcasters and Instagram posters showing off their progress with increasing envy.
Later in the year I decided to bite the bullet and loose my Westknits virginity by having a go at the hiberknitalong instead which was a much more relaxed affair. I had a great time choosing the yarns and knitting the shawl and I was so pleased with the results. Here I am with my finished winter lights shawl back when I finished in feb 2021
My winter lights shawl by Stephen West. Pattern on ravelry here: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/winter-lights-shawl
MKAL season 2021
The time again has come and this time I’m all in.
My yarns have been chosen:
My chosen colours are from https://botanicalyarn.com/
The pattern has been bought and my ravelry project has been created, you can view it here:
!!!!! WARNING SPOILERS AHEAD !!!!
Clue 1- 08.10.2021
Well I managed to get started on time – the evening of the 8th and oh my! I was so excited to get going, like a kid on Christmas Eve!
My colour choices and placements are as follows:
- Colour A – Pink
- Colour B – Grey
- Colour C – Yellow
- Colour D – Purple
- Colour E – Blue
I found this simple enough, just a few rows in my fave colour which I chose as the neon pink.
Section 2 – Short Row Wedges
Hmm, I was a bit more nervous here, but as Stephen had done such a fantastic job with the tutorial video, I was able to ease into it and “say yes, don’t stress”. After a few repeats I really got the hang of those German short rows and as the rows WERE short it didn’t take long to get this section done either. I have to say, I can’t wait to see this section when it’s been blocked. It’s all bunched up at the moment but it’s going to look fab and I’m loving my colour choices so far.
Section 3 – Slip Stitch V’s
I had a bit of indecision here about my colours as I’d originally chosen the blue as my colour C but I thought it might get lost with the 2 neons under it. I looked back at the colour notes and decided to use my other neon pop of the yellow as my colour C going forward. This section was easy too, again Stephens tutorial video helped massively and eased any anxiety I had about making mistakes. I did at one point end up with 1 stitch to few, I think it was at the end of row 9 where I did the s2kp an extra time rather than k2tog k1, but I just increased a stitch in the next RS row and was back on track with no stress.
I love the way this section works too. The pop of the neon criss-crossing over the stripes is so graphic.
Section 4 – Icord loops
Woah.. wtf is going on here! I’m trusting the pattern here, Stephen! These loops were a bit of a faff and I know for sure they are not all 10 rows long! But, they are done and I have to be honest I’m really glad it stopped here for week 1. It’s such a cliffhanger moment. The intrigue of what these loop are going to turn into is fantastic.
Clue 1 – Completed 11.10.2021
Here is my finished clue 1:
I hope everyone is enjoying their MKAL process and experience. I really hope I can keep up with the clues (and the blog) and hopefully will see you all again soon.
Take care everyone, Stay Safe and happy crafting.