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FAL Finish: Sakura Shawl

2015 FAL at On the Windy Side

The only other thing I've finished from this quarter's FAL list is the Sakura shawl that Lynz and I did as a (very informal) KAL.  I've got to say that it was a lot of fun knitting alongside someone else (albeit via email!) and I hope we do it again soon!  (You can see her gorgeous green shawl here.)

This is how the shawl looked at the start of the quarter:

Sakura shawl

And this is how it looked straight off the needles:

Off the needles!

You can't really see the lace pattern and, to be honest, it looks a bit like a heap of knitting at this stage!

Before blocking

I put off blocking it for a while (I always do as I always overestimate how hard it's going to be and how long it's going to take!) but finally got it done last week.  First I pinned it to the carpet, using lots of pins!  It's the first shawl I've blocked which has made me think that it would be easier with blocking wires.  I can't see me buying any, though, as I'm managing with pins even if it does take a little longer.


I put a damp (fresh from a rinse and spin in the washer rather than dunked in a sink) sheet over it and left it until the sheet was dry, which took about 18 hours.

This is how it looked when it was unpinned (and I'd sewn in the ends):

Sakura shawl
Struggling to get it all in the photo!

And here's a much better photo of the lace pattern:

I couldn't possibly comment on the rumour that I taped the shawl to the window to get this photo.

I'm really pleased with this shawl and hope the intended recipient likes it, when she eventually receive it!  (It doesn't need to be sent for a few months yet!)

Shawl details:

Pattern: Sakura by Leila Raabe
Yarn: Artesano alpaca silk 4-ply in 'drake'; four 50g/200m skeins - I used 154g which works out at about 616m.
Size: approx. 66" (across top edge) x 29" (from top edge to point)
Things learnt: SSP decrease; SSP cast off (took nigh on an hour!); 3 from 1 stitch; M1R and when to use it rather than M1L (at least, I think I know when to use it!); Russian join; how much fun a (relaxed) KAL can be; that indie knitting designers are really helpful and friendly when you email them for help and disclose your knitting numptiness - thanks, Leila!  I've just made the mistake of looking at this link and have spotted many things I want to knit!!

Thank you, Lynz, for keeping me company on this knit, I really enjoyed it and it wouldn't have been half as much fun without you!

I'm linking up to Adrianne for the finishing party, I just wish I had more finishes to link up!

Archie has had a finish of his own - he ate the last home baked biscuit which Susan and the girls bought him from Tynemouth market:
Oh biscuit, how I love you.  You're my last (cheesy) biscuit and I'm going to enjoy you!

The crumbs were nice, too!

I'll just check in case I've missed anything.

Are  you sure that was the last one?  Yes?  Well when's Susan coming back?  And can you make some of these in the meantime?

Thanks for popping in!


  1. Much as I love the shawl, it is truly gorgeous. I was captivated by Archie and the last biscuit.

  2. Congratulations on finishing a lovely shawl, and, by the sound of things, on trying something new. I thought I could knit, but those abbreviations have got me stumped!

  3. That is beautiful! Taping it to the window provided a gorgeous photo and I can really see the incredible work!

  4. Oh this is beautiful. And thanks for the link to the dog biscuits - I may try that!;

  5. It's gorgeous!!! And it looks quite different from my green one - much more sophisticated! Thank you so much for having me along for the ride, I would never have gotten past that first chart without your encouragement! We definitely need to do another one, something equally gung-ho bonkers and above our skill levels. It's the best way to learn being together. *g*

  6. A great, if predictable, finish for Archie! And the shawl is really stunning. The lace effect is beautiful and the colour is lovely :)

  7. Beautiful shawl and numpty is definitely not in your knitting vocab! Always amazed at the difference the blocking makes.
    And thanks to Archie for the biscuit recipe which I have shared.x

  8. Oh my H, that shawl is so stunning! As a non-knitter I can't even imagine how clever it is to create that beautiful lacy effect! Such a special gift. Jxo

  9. The lacy effect is so beautiful. Well done for such a gorgeous make a long with Lynz.

  10. Neat and what a fun pics of your dog! :)

  11. I've only blocked a knitting project once and it surprised me at how much difference it made. I have a lace wrap in progress and will definitely be doing that if I ever get it finished. Archie looks like he really made the most of those treats!

  12. No wonder you had to concentrate when making this gorgeous shawl! Bravo and well done!

  13. The shawl is beautiful! I'm visiting as a member of the official 2015 Finish-Along cheerleading squad.

  14. That sylph like shawl is a masterpiece of beauty. I admire how you just plug away, until everything comes together, and "ta-da" its always awesome.
    I hope you remember to take all the pins out of the carpet!
    Your garden and paving look lovely, as showcased by the equally adorable - Mr Archie.


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