Ridge and Furrow is the result of making classic mistake and that moment of inspiration that you just have to see it through to the end. My walk to the local farm to check out their fleece took me through a freshly ploughed field. I was inspired by the pattern of the ridges and furrows through the field and the rich chocolate brown of the earth.
Excitement building, I started planning a shawl. I knew the design would need to be lacy and it would be natural dark brown. Then I got to the farm. There it was, a beautiful chocolate brown Hebridean fleece all bundled up and ready to go. Serendipity. It had my name on it. I could start right away.
This is where I messed up. I took it without opening it and looking at it properly . When I got home I eagerly unwrapped it on the lawn. My heart sank. It was nasty. Clotted, filled with VFM. Did I chuck it out? No way, that shawl wanted out! I didn’t even abandon it when I accidentally felted it when I scoured it.
I rescued the best of the nasty, matted, useless mess which gave me a little over 56 grams (2oz) of usable fibre. This I hand carded into some really supersoft rolags. To make the most out the tiny amount I had salvaged it had to be a superfine single spun worsted with the lowest twist the fibre could handle without drifting apart. I got about 780m (850 yards) in the end.
Using a triangular construction the shawl is knitted from the top centre down through the main body and the edge is knitted on to the live stitches along the bottom edge.
The main body is a simple combination of stockinette stitch and a 4-row repeated lace pattern. The gorgeous edging is a simple 6 row repeat edging worked along the hem of the main body.
The lace pattern is number 25 from Pitsilised Koekirjad, an Estonian lace stitch dictionary by Leili Reimann. The lace edging is a pattern design I charted from memory of another piece of lace I had seen, but cannot remember its source. If anybody recognises it, please let me know and I can give full credit.
FINISHED MEASUREMENTS Width: 65 inches across Height: 30 inches deep
taken after blocking
MATERIALS Fiber: Undyed Hebridean fleece purchased raw from Green Farm, Elsing, Norfolk, UK.
per inch: 49 WPI (approx.)
used: 750m (850 yards)
Drafting method: Short forward worsted
Spinning Tool: Ashford
Traditional [scotch tension] Niddy
Noddy: (stupendous handmade gift) 2m total skein length
Commercial Yarn Alternative
Jamiesons and Sons Shetland Supreme Lace weight 1-ply yarn [100% Shetland wool; 400yds/436m per 25g skein]; color: Moorit; 2 balls
Recommended needle size [always use a needle size that
gives you the gauge listed below --
every knitter's gauge is unique]
US 6/4mm needles for working flat: a long circular is easiest for managing the large number of stitches.
18 sts/32 rows = 4 inches in stockinette stitch
18 sts/26 rows = 4 inches in pattern stitch (according to Chart 1 fully open after washing and blocking) Correct gauge is not essential for this project, however working at a different gauge will affect both the look and the yarn usage.
PATTERN NOTES [Knitty's list of standard abbreviations and techniques can be found here.]
This is a modular pattern. The main body stocking stitch and 4 row linear lace pattern can be made smaller or larger to give a smaller shoulderette or larger shawl as required. The edging is worked on the resulting live stitches so will fit whatever size.
Gauge isn’t vital and neither is needle size. Use what gives you the result you want for the yarn you use.
This project uses a provisional cast on. Use your preferred technique; directions for one may be found here.
3 into 3 star: K3tog without dropping sts from left needle, yo, k same 3 sts together again and drop from left needle.
Keep edging stitches and cast on and cast off stitches very loose to help with the blocking. Either pull the yarn into a big sloppy stitch if you are good at being consistent, or alternatively wrap the yarn around the needle when working the stitch, remembering to slip all off needle before working.
The slipped stitch at the edges are to keep everything loose for blocking.
Charts The charts for this pattern are very large and fit on a letter-sized page.
Click here and print the resulting page.
Using a provisional cast on method, CO 3 sts.
Row 1: Sl 1, k2.
Work 14 more rows as set.
At end of last row, turn work 90 degrees clockwise and pick up and k 5 sts along the long edge of work, skipping the first slipped stitch of the edge.
Remove waste yarn from CO edge, placing resulting 3 live stitches onto left hand needle. 11 sts.
Row 1 [WS]: Knit.
Row 2 [RS]: Sl 1, k2, pm, m1, k2, yo, pm, k1, pm, yo, k2, m1, pm, k3. 15 sts.
Row 3 [WS]: Sl 1, k2, p to first marker, k1, p to last 3 sts, k3.
Row 4 [RS]: Sl 1, k2, m1, k to first marker, yo, sl m, k1, sl m, yo, k to last 3 sts, m1, k3. 4 sts increased.
Row 5 [WS]: Sl 1, k2, p to first marker, k1, p to last 3 sts, k3.
Repeat Rows 4-5 24 more times, to 119 sts.
Establish Body Lace pattern Row 1, establish lace pattern [RS]: Sl 1, k2, work Chart 1 to first marker (working 8-stitch repeat as required), sl m, k1, sl m, work Chart 1 (working 8-stitch repeat as required) to last 3 sts, k3. 4 sts increased.
Row 2 [WS]: Sl 1, k2, work Chart 1 to first marker, k1, work Chart 1 to last 3 sts, k3.
Work as set until you have worked Chart 1 twice, and work Rows 1-4 once more. 263 sts total, 128 in each lace portion.
Transition to Border: Row 1 [RS]: Sl 1, k2, m1, k to first marker, yo, sl m, k1, sl m, yo, k to last 3 sts, m1, k3. 267 sts.
Row 2 [WS]: Sl 1, k to end.
Row 3 [RS]: Sl 1, k2, m1, k1, [k5, work 3-into-3 star] to 1 st before center marker, k1, yo, sl m, k1, sl m, yo, k1, [k5, work 3-into-3 star] to last 4 sts, k1, m1, k3. 271 sts.
Row 4 [WS]: Sl 1, k to end.
Row 5 [RS]: Sl 1, k2, m1, k to first marker, yo, sl m, k1, sl m, yo, k to last 3 sts, m1, k3. 274 sts.
Row 6 [WS]: Sl 1, k to end.
Note: the 3 into 3 star should line up with the 3 stitch ridge pattern lines formed between to the lace pattern and make a pretty flower motif end point to the ridges.
Working only on the first 3 sts of the (RS) row, work an extension of the border as follows: Row 1 [RS]: Sl 1, k2, turn.
Row 2 [WS]: Sl 1, k2, turn.
Continue as set until 38 rows total have been worked, ending with WS row
Setup for border [RS]: BO 3 sts, leaving final st live on the needle.
Pick up and knit 17 loops along the inside edge of the strip, heading towards the body stiches; pick up one more loop, slip it to left needle and work a k2tog on that picked-up stitch and the first live stitch of the body These 19 sts will be used for the edging. 270 sts rem in shawl body.
Turn work so that WS is facing.
Work Chart 2, attaching the edging to the shawl with the decrease at the end of every RS row, until 3 sts rem on left hand needle plus sts on right hand needle. You’ll end with Chart Row 6. K3 to end of row.