Sunday, June 26, 2011



I'm getting ready to tackle a project that has been waiting in the wings for a long time - the Orenburg Honeycomb lace scarf by Galina Khmeleva, published in Piecework Magazine (May/June 2010).

I started a swatch - mainly to see how the stitch pattern worked and if the needle size was appropriate. And I finally learned how to do a long-tail cast-on. From the photos and the chart, the honeycomb didn't look very difficult, but in her introduction to the pattern, Khmeleva notes that many of her students find this motif more challenging than the other basic elements of Orenburg-style knitted lace. This made me wonder what the other elements looked like, and I found some of them here, with a pretty interesting story to go with them, too.

I cast on using red Filatura di Crosa Centolavaggi, which is basically the laceweight version of Zara. This is the yarn I was always planning to use, but then I remembered some Knittery handpainted laceweight I've had stashed for years, and gave that a try. But the Centolavaggi is so nice, it's totally the winner.

And then I decided to keep going, turning the swatch into a kind of sampler. A messy, unbalanced one - not the kind that ends up in a museum 100 years later!


amy said...

I only recently learned to do a long-tail cast-on, too! It was for a lace project I eventually abandoned, because it had no resting rounds and my poor addled head just couldn't do it, I needed complete quiet and concentration (like that ever happens here!). But then I wondered why it had taken me so long to learn and what my hang-up was, because I love it.

I also love your sampler. Very useful, and so neatly labeled, now you'll never forget what was what.

Donna Lee said...

I have never done a long-tail cast on (sounds like a name of a wild knitting stitch) either. I don't think I've ever done a pattern that called for one. I read that issue of Piecework and was fascinated by the lacework inside. What wonderful skills.

Anonymous said...

oh its going to be just gorgeous. shes so clever, i admire you for tackling one of her projects. cant wait to see how this turns out!

Alwen said...

I've been lucky enough to take two of her classes at the Michigan Fiber Festival, and I think she said honeycomb was tricky because it's patterned both sides, so hard to back up and recover from a mistake.

Meanwhile, your sampler is a pretty little thing all on its own! I love the colors!