A couple of days ago I did a little teaser about this yarn and finishing a huge project. I am proud and glad and relieved to say that huge project that went on for 9 months (it's only a coincidence that it how long the gestation period is for a child) is finally, totally completed. Any project this big must have a long story behind it and this one started at Yarn Quest in Traverse City the day I brought Interlacement Velvet.
I brought this gorgeous yarn as UD (undesignated, I loved it but didn't know what I would do with it) in the summer of 2011. I kept looking through knitting magazines, on Patternfish, through my old knitting books. Nothing looked right until . . .
I bought the fabulous "Knit, Swirl!" by Sandra McIver. As soon as I saw this concept, I knew that the Interlacement Velvet would be perfect. Lots of projects got in my way. I was so into Survivor Shawls for a few years that I didn't knit much else. I still had this idea in the back of my mind "Interlacement Velvet--Knit Swirl! Yes!" I must admit I was a little intimidated by the pattern. I read and reread the instructions and was continually amazed at what Sandra McIver had accomplished. The Swirl is a totally unique knitting experience, one of those that you never know until the end if it will fit or not
In the late summer of 2013, I saw an announcement by The Knitting Room a fabulous LYS in Birmingham for a Knit, Swirl class. What better way to start than a social knitting experience at one of my favorite LYS. On a very stormy day I got up early and drove the 90 minutes to Birmingham to begin my Knit, Swirl adventure.
Here it is and it fits!!!! I wasn't sure at first but after a heavy duty steam with my industrial steamer (thank you Crafty Lady for teaching me about the best way to block knits) it was perfect.
Sally was the instructor and she was great. Of course, I had to buy yarn from The Knitting Room for the class that's very standard and I expected to. I bought this great Lang which was soft and subtlely colorful. And we were off! I learned two indispensable things from this class that I will use forever. Since the Swirl is knit in the round starting at the outside edge then joining, it started out tricky. I had to longtail cast on 577 stitches! Here is the first learning. Cast on either using two balls of yarn or using an end from inside and one from the outside the ball of yarn. How many times have you done a longtail cast on only to run out of tail before you were done?!?!? Annoying, frustrating, maddening!!!!! With this cast on method, that never happens. Ok, so I have 577 stitches and I need to join them with no twist. Next learning: Knit three or four rows of pattern then join. It's perfect! When you're finished you weave the little separation closed and Ta-Da.
If you have a paper and pencil to keep track and follow the pattern row by row, things move along pretty smoothly. I went home and knit for a few weeks until I had the outside circle done and started on the body. Then Christmas and Sunset Beach intervened and the Swirl became a TBFL project. I pulled it out a few weeks ago and decided to finish. It looked like this
I had no place big enough to steam so I called the Knitting Room and asked it I could come and use their huge blocking area. They said "yes" and off I went on another stormy day. It was great going back. The Knitting Room has an amazing selection of yarns. I always find something I can't live without. My knitting buddy Linda and I discovered the Knitting Room on our very first Yarn Tour and we have been going back ever since. People are helpful, yarn is gorgeous, what more could you want? In addition, I learned those two great hints while casting on. I did resteam it at home using my industrial steamer. I couldn't reach to pin it all out so I really didn't need the big area but it was nice spending some time in the Knitting Room. It really needs a strong steaming. You need to pin the welts to look exactly like you want them, give them a good steam then let it dry. Oh, by the way, it fit perfectly!
Well, you might have noticed. I have my Swirl but it isn't made from Interlacement Velvet! My plan is to use my beautiful Velvet to make another. Someday I will surprise you.