"Graceful drapes and sensuous textures" are unusual descriptive words for conventional
knitting and felting results. Usually stiff, but sturdy, common felting is never used for a scarf pattern. And needle-felting is a whole other kettle of fish. But Gina Wilde has taken simple felting to another level, one easily accomplished, using the Shibori knitting technique. Shawl patterns knit with two yarns, felting and non-felting fibers, resulting in a finished fabric which is "soft, translucent, and majestic."
For her "Wisdom Wrap," Wilde uses Alchemy Yarns non-felting 'Silken Straw' and 'Sancutary', which felts, to achieve this "new level of elegance." Knit in one piece, with a US 6 (4.25mm) needle, an easy pattern, with finished pre-felting measurement of 14 inches by 72 inches. Unlike regular felting, the piece will actually get bigger after fulling instead of shrinking. When purchasing, keep in mind, the yarns are specific. The silk yarn grows, while the wool shrinks, creating a lush windowpane fabric with subtle ruffling and even bobble effects in a scarf pattern.
Shibori, an artform dating to the 8th century CE, is a Japanese term which has no English translation, but often used in reference to weaving and dyeing in the western world. Wilde
is known as the founder of the Shibori knitting technique; find her Shibori Knits: The Art of Exquisite Felted Knits and Alchemy: Yarns of Transformation, available on Amazon. The
Wisdom Wrap shawl pattern and her many beautiful scarf patterns, using the Shibori technique, can be downloaded individually on Ravelry for $7.00.
More Shibori patterns:
"Rocky Road Shibori Scarf" by Marta McCall
Reading from southern New England? Put The Great Rhody Yarn Crawl, on your calendar for April 12-14, 2013, with benefits going to the Rhode Island Foodbank.
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