Morticia Lace Knitted Shawl – Mystery Knit Along Experience

If you’ve been following my crochet/knit blog, you might of noticed I went MIA for awhile. That was a cross between working on my other blog, The Oolong Owl and getting caught up with various crafting projects. I also have been meaning to move the Awkward Soul Designs blog to my own host from a free blog hosting – and less content to move, the easier (gosh, it was a nightmare moving Oolong Owl, I lost pictures!). Anyways, here is one of the projects I worked on during my knitting blog MIA time.

Morticia Lace Knitted Shawl

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Pattern: Boo Knits’ MORTICIA

Awkward Soul’s Morticia Ravelry Project Page

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This shawl was a Mystery Knit Along (MKAL). How a MKAL works, at least how Boo Knits did it, was first there was lots of well deserved hype that there was a mystery lace knitting pattern coming out. The pattern was released in small parts each week, with no pictures of the finished product to be found (unless you looked at the spoilers). Fellow knitters on the Boo Knits group on Ravelry would knit the shawl together, talk about it and post progress pics of each “clue”. It was quite fun in that aspect of you don’t know what you are making and there are others making the same thing to help you out if needed. Before the pattern was posted, the material list was available – so everyone knew how much yarn they needed and number of beads. Lots of beads!

This was my first MKAL – to me the concept is cool, but I am also a bit of a control perfectionist freak when it comes to my crochet/knitting/drawings so making something I had no idea what it would look like in the end was pretty scary to me.

BUT, I trusted Boo Knits, as I’ve made 4 of her patterns, for the finished lace shawl to be gorgeous no matter what.

For yarn, I had a couple balls of elann Peruvian Baby Lace Merino in my stash, and I purchased some smokey black seed beads. Since I’ve worked with Boo Knits patterns before using the same yarn, I knew what needle size to use.

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The first clue was released early October 2013. I managed to start the same time when the first “clue” was release and finished it just before the second clue arrived.

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It took me almost 2 weeks to finish clue 2, so I was behind a week – the shawl was turning up quite large and longer to make with the lace being throughout the entire shawl and the beading time consuming. If you make a mistake on bead placement or an error in the lace knitting near a bead, it looks quite weird but also was a pain in the butt to go back and fix. Sometimes when I make small mistakes in lace knitting I just fake it, but when there’s beads in the mix that can’t be done unless you can live with the beading being out of place.

Unfortunately, Pokemon XY came out and I got caught up playing that and put down the shawl. To keep the shawl a mystery I downloaded each clue and AVOIDED Ravelry’s pattern page and Boo Knits related things until I was done.

I picked up the shawl again when I went on a 15 day cruise to Hawaii (so lovely!) in January and hammered out a few rows, getting clue 3 done.

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As the shawl progressed, there was even more beading involved, sometimes every other stitch! It looks fantastic though!

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After another short break, I was determined to get my morticia shawl done!  After a month of working on my shawl, I finished in May 2014. Thankfully, the blocking wasn’t too difficult.

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In the end, I love how this shawl turned out! It is very large – 7 FEET WIDE, 22″ tall.

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It has amazing drape due to the weight of the beads. The lace pattern is gorgeous and the beads add sparkle throughout the piece.

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As a knitter, the subtle transition of the lace pattern was a fun knit – difficultly wise (not counting beads) it wasn’t bad as every wrong side row was purled.

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I love the dramatic picot bind off. This bind off also had beads on the tips, making an already time consuming bind off even more intense to make.

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For the Mystery Knit Along aspect, I don’t think I’d do one again. Though, I always wanted to make a purple shawl, even having the yarn in my stash before making this lace shawl, if I were to make this shawl again I would do it in a cool light colour. I think the detail, drape and the dramatically spiky border would of made a gorgeous light grey ghostly shawl. I would of also not of used beads – they look great, but ramped up the difficulty and time to knit the shawl. Hmmm, maybe I’ll make another one…

2 thoughts on “Morticia Lace Knitted Shawl – Mystery Knit Along Experience

  1. How on EARTH does one work in beads? Say for crocheting? THAT is something (even for knitting, which I know little about, but kinda grasp the concept) that I never understood! I have a few project ideas. But would want to use beads for them, and never could figure out how one would be able to incorporate them into the work! It seems almost hard to figure out! For this piece, I can see exactly HOW the pattern became harder, because of the task in adding seed beads. It’s an amazing piece indeed! I just REALLY need to find out HOW to incorporate beads into a piece, I’d crochet!

    • I actually use a crochet hook to add beads, though theres a bunch of different methods. I rather put on each bead individually than have 800 beads on my yarn, which turns out to be a tangled mess.

      Design wise? Yeah it’s tough. What I’ve done for knitting so far was swatched it, see where a bead could be placed and swatched again. Charting it would help a bunch too over written instructions, to visualize.

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