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Westknits Mystery Knit A Long 2021

ūüá¨ūüáß For the 12th time, Stephen West of Westknits / Stephen & Penelope organized his autumnal Mystery Knit Along This year is now already the second time I participated, and I will take it a bit slower. It is a Knit Along not a race. The sign-up is open since the 1st of September, the official cast-on party will be via an Instagram Live at the 8th of October, the date when the first clue will be released.

Pattern:
This year’s pattern for the MKAL is called “Shawlography”;
Designer is Stephen West;
The pattern is available on Ravelry.

Yarn:
Heathland Knits Rustic Sock Kit “Honeysuckle” including the colors Solid Amethyst, Berries, Fading Rose, Apricot, and Vanilla

OR

Heathland Knits Fine Merino Single Kit “Blue Sea Turtle” including colors Limestone, Light Blue Tourmaline, Light Shale, Blue Celestite, and Shale

Info:
FAQ about the MKAL can be found either at Stephen and Penelope or at Westknits.

Videos by Westknits
Shawlography Intro
Shawlography Documentary

Report:
This year I decided to knit along with more peace. Of course, it was hard to resist all the craziness at Ravelry and on Instagram. There was a lot of anticipation going on. There where a lot of beautiful yarn kits shown, which made me doubt my own choice continuously. At the end I decided for the blue yarn and casted on right at the day the first clue was in my in box.

But now to the actual knitted piece:
The Slipstravaganza is a pattern for a shawl and has various similarities to other Westknits patterns. The shawl has one main color and three contrasting colors. The name is program for this instruction. There are six sections in total, most of them using slipped stitches.

  • Clue 1 – 08.10.2021:
    • Section 1: The shawl starts with a cute little Garter tab.
    • Section 2: During the second section the stitches of the Garter tab are expanded using short rows. The rows are fanning out nicely to a crescent shape with an i-cord border.
    • Section 3: In this section the i-cord stitches are picked up and continued with the “slippy V” pattern which is already known from this years Yarn Along or the additional pattern later.
    • Section 4: This is a rather funky section. In this section big i-cord loops are added to the shawl. I decided to add some fluffiness using a blend of Suri alpaca and Silk. Originally, the loops are rather loosely connected to the shawl leaving some really cool looking gaps in the fabric. But since I am wearing my shawls often just wrapped around my shoulders, I am not a big fan of too large holes – especially not when they are located at shoulder height. So, I did not follow the original instruction completely but knitted the i-cord loops together with the stitches where they started.
  • Clue 2 – 15.10.2021:
    • Section 5: After the finger twisting section 4, section five was creating some relaxing slipped stitch columns.
    • Section 6: This section is creating some welts by knitting some rows of stockinette. At the very end the stockinette piece is rolled up and divided by some tucked stitches creating the the welts. In this section, I again used the Suri-Silk yarn.
    • Section 7: The welts are followed by some slipped stitch triangles. The slipped stitches are creating floats on the back side of the knitting that are covering 5 stitches. Since I am always afraid that I get stuck with these floats somewhere, I like to catch them. I took a short video, which is shown after the picture gallery.
    • Section 8: This section is the last one of the initial crescent shape. It is adding some bobbles, which I for some symmetry reasons also knitted with the Suri-Silk yarn.
    • Section 9: The last section of clue 2 is adding two wings at the sides of the shawl using short rows, again. The shawl has a stitch count of close to 300 stitches and it will get more during the next section!
  • Clue 3 – 22.10.2021:
    • Section 10: In this section it was possible to choose between a brioche part or some fancy mesh construction. Since I am a big fan of brioche, I went for that option. This section is knitted again along the full width of the shawl. I liked a bit of a clear line between the brioche part and the neighboring sections. Therefore, I added two rows with my darkest yarn color as separator.
    • Section 11: This section was the last section before the border. It is creating one line of elongated crossed stitches. I worked this section in Suri-Silk yarn.
Section 10 (top) and 11 (bottom)
  • Clue 4 – 29.10.2021:
    • Section 12: This as the last section of the shawl. Originally, it is creating a bold striped border of all colors. I sorted my colors in the order C, A, D, E, B – from darkest to lightest. Since the rest of the shawl is a mix of all kind of fine, delicate textures, the bold stripes didn‚Äôt really fit for me. Therefore, I decided on a fine grain fade. While the original pattern is creating bold stripes by using one color in each stripe, I added two color stripes between the solid ones, where I alternated the previous and the coming color. This is creating a fade between the two colors. To blend the colors even more, I worked the garter such, that the purl bumps with the color change are on the RS of the work. You would get that by purling every row. To avoid that, I simply started to work the border with the WS facing me, knitting all my rows. By doing so, I got all the purl bumps on the right side, too.

I actually only finished in February 2022. The border took me a while. The usage of the yarn as well as some knitting documentation can also be found on the page of my Shawlography Ravelry project page.


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