Kiwiyarns Knits

A blog about New Zealand yarns, knitting and life

Notes – Wholehearted KAL


Oh my.  There are so many gorgeous yarns that can be used for the Wholehearted shawl.

I had quite a bit of fun rummaging in the stash last night!  From the sounds of it, a lot of you did too.  🙂  Thank you so very much for joining in.  Even though I do not know Erika Flory, it truly warms my heart to see so many of you reaching out to help her daughter.  Knitters truly are a compassionate bunch!   Personally, it’s making this KAL so much more meaningful to me too, seeing your own stories and feelings.

Back to the yarn… I found so many candidates that I wasn’t sure which to knit first:

My first instinct was to knit this shawl in alpaca.  Alpaca is a beautifully drapey, snuggly yarn, and my last skein of Flagstaff Alpacas’s multi-dyed 4 ply has been begging to be used for a while.  I hunted around, and found some beautiful white alpaca to match it.

This is more alpaca – Jaegar (now discontinued I think?)  It is part of a swap I did with Colette a while ago, and I’ve been wanting to find a project for this gorgeous yarn ever since.  I think a solid colour of this pattern will also look good – there’s enough textural interest going on in the pattern to make it interesting without having to be duo-coloured.

My favourite yarn, of course.  Zealana Kiwi has a perfect drape (you’ll remember my Autumnal cardi is knitted in this), is lovely and soft but not fluffy, and this is a good project to use up those last two balls of grey in the stash.  It matches so well with the Wild Lime colourway.

This pattern looks like it would make a nice gift, so I got all three lots of yarn out and put them on my knitting chair to look at and decide upon later, and then went to bed.

Today:  I’ve had a busy day at work and I didn’t feel like I had the mental energy to knit more of Prairie Rose when I got home this afternoon, so I cast on Wholehearted.   I’ve decided to begin with the Flagstaff Alpaca yarn – the skein did after all practically leap out of the stash at me for this pattern!

I’d like to note a small typo in the pattern.  It’s not an error really, and if you know what you’re doing with shawls, you’ll be fine.  It looks like Erika started thinking about placing markers in the instructions but didn’t quite finish.  If you’ve ever tried it, writing patterns can be tricky.  So much attention to detail is required, even on a relatively easy pattern.  You will probably have noted she had just recovered from open-heart surgery when she wrote this pattern, which may be the reason for the omissions.

This pattern is actually very simple, but markers do help at first, especially if you’re like me, and not a confident shawl knitter yet.

Row 1 of the set-up row should therefore read “K2, pm, yo, kfb, yo, pm, k1 (cs), pm, yo, kfb, yo, pm, K2″.  This should set you up nicely for the rest of the instructions (she says hopefully).  Essentially, you’re using markers to define the edges and the centre stitch.

Row 1 of the shawl body has missed out one final ‘sm’.  The final part of the sentence should read “…yo, sm, K2″ (you’ll probably do that instinctively when you’re knitting it anyway).

Text is bolded where you need to insert text into your copy of the pattern.

After I got over that small hiccup, I proceeded to become thoroughly engrossed in the knitting.  Garter stitch on a loose gauge is not my prettiest, most evenly tensioned knitting though, and I’ve had a few “frowning at knitting, smoothing out stitches wondering why the garter isn’t one smooth line” episodes.  I hope it will block nicely.  Perhaps if I was using a yarn more similar to the recommended Madeline Tosh I might not have this issue.  It will be interesting to see how I go using Kiwi.

I’m looking forward to getting to the broken rib part!

How are you coming along?


Author: kiwiyarns

Welcome to my blog where I talk about knitting in New Zealand and the beautiful yarns you can find here.

8 thoughts on “Notes – Wholehearted KAL

  1. You chose beautiful yarns! I don’t have any fingering weight on hand, so am thinking of doing it in light worsted (DK). I keep picturing it in two shades of green, as if the Earth was wrapping her arms around me. 🙂

  2. I think I will use the alpaca I have in light and dark grey, or maybe the cream. I have never knitted a shawl before but i thought that it might be nice to do for Mum for her Birthday (that give me to the end of June!! Let me know if you would like a different colour to add to that wool I sent you)


  3. I’ve had some Buffalo Gold “Lux” that has been in my stash for years that looks perfect for this. I have lots of Kiwi too, but just finished a big project with that, so BG it is!

  4. I love your yarns – the colours are beautiful. I seem to have acquired lots of very bright colours in my stash – time for a bit of an earthy feel I think 🙂
    The shawl is going to be beautiful – it’s a great pattern.

  5. I was gifted the pattern this week and will be knitting along with you, Evelyn and Gail.
    I’m just posting now and will co right afterward.

  6. Don’t worry about the garter stitch. I just finished a project using Tosh that had garter stitch and it blocked right out. But it is a little unnerving to see the knitting not looking perfect before blocking it.