Oshara Shawl Mystery KAL: Week 4
Hello, everyone, and welcome to the fourth and final week of our Oshara Shawl Mystery Knitalong!
I can’t believe that we’re at the end of our KAL, but time really does fly when you’re having fun.
This week we’re finishing up our shawls with more slip-stitch colorwork sections, then a simple band of garter stitch followed by an eyelet edging. The edging, which finishes the shawl, mirrors the first eyelet row you knit at the beginning of the shawl. Once you’ve finished the edging, you’re done with the knitting, but you’re not done with the project just yet! There are a few important things to keep in mind when you’re finishing your shawl.
In order to maintain the crescent shape of your shawl, it’s essential to work the bind-off as follows:
*K2tog, k1, return 2 sts to left needle; rep from * to end.
This bind-off method creates an edge with enough elasticity to stretch fully during blocking; a standard bind-off is not stretchy enough for this edging and will not yield the desired result.
BIND-OFF TIP: Go up one needle size when binding off to ensure an elastic edge.
With the knitting completed, you can go ahead and weave in all the ends, but make sure not to trim any of the tails yet. It’s always a good idea to leave the tails long during blocking so they don’t unweave themselves when you stretch the fabric.
Let’s talk about blocking lace shawls. Blocking lace is essential, as it opens up the eyelets, relaxes the fabric to its intended measurements, and reveals the stitches and design. You’ll need the following materials:
- Wool wash (such as Soak, Eucalan, or even gentle dish soap)
- Basin or sink of lukewarm water
- Large towel
- Blocking surface (blocking board or mats, bed, or clean rug)
- Blocking wires (optional)
- Measuring tape
Fill the basin with lukewarm water and a drop of a wool wash, then soak your shawl for at least 20 minutes. If you forget and leave it soaking longer, don’t worry; a little extra time is not going to hurt the project. The shawl needs to be fully submerged, so be sure to gently squeeze out any air bubbles. After a good soaking, drain the basin and carefully squeeze out the excess water from the shawl. Gently remove the shawl from the basin and spread it out on the towel, then roll it up and press with your hands to remove as much extra water as possible. Place the shawl on the blocking surface.
Stretch out and pin the shawl as shown in the blocking schematic, using a measuring tape to give your shawl the correct dimensions. If you have blocking wires, you can thread them through the edge stitches along the short sides. Start by pinning the two short sides to establish the full wingspan length, then pin the center of the bottom edge to get the correct depth. After that, pin out the rest of the bottom edge. You can pin every fourth eyelet, as I did in the original sample, or you can choose to pin a different number of eyelets—whatever you like. If you prefer your shawl without scallops, you can pin out every eyelet for a smooth bottom edge; if you have flexible blocking wires, you can use them to easily create this smooth edge.
Patience Is a Virtue
Be sure to let your shawl dry completely before you unpin it, keeping in mind that the drying time can vary greatly depending on how wet your project was to start with as well as on the ambient temperature and humidity. You can speed up the process by running a fan over the shawl until it’s completely dry. Finish by trimming all the yarn tails, and then you’re done.
If you’d like to create a printable set of instructions for the shawl, copy and paste the URL for this blog into the box at the top of this page. Your print version will be generated in a jiffy!
Work Rows 1–12 of Chart 8.
Work Rows 1–18 of Chart 9, breaking C after Row 10 and B after Row 18.
With A, work lower edge as foll:
Knit 12 rows, ending with a WS row.
Next row (RS) K1, *yo, k2tog; rep from * to end.
Next row (WS) Knit.
BO all sts as foll: *K2tog, k1, return 2 sts to left needle; rep from * to end.
Weave in ends. Block to measurements and shape as shown in blocking schematic. Begin by pinning the two short sides, foll by shawl’s center point, then pin out rem points along lace edge, pinning every 4th eyelet to a point (no need to pin CO edge). When completely dry, remove pins and trim all yarn tails.
Time to show off your Oshara Shawl! Enjoy!