I pretty much HATE blocking. Of course I always do it and love the effect on my knitted work. It’s such an amazing transformation from fuzzled curly mess to something you would actually want to wear.
I’ve been blocking today and seeing as it was fairly early in the morning I didn’t stick on a YouTube play list but just bibbled about with the patio doors open – Treacle had to be hissed at three times before she stopped writhing about on the mats trying for belly skrunkles.
Listening to The Sisters of Mercy has become traditional – something to do with the summer of the perpetual World’s End playlist – so I get the urge to listen to blaring 80s dark wave every time I reach for the blocking wires. The music is important for keeping the spirits up and something where I feel like bopping about sustains momentum whilst scrambling back and forth Gollum-like replacing pins as they pop out.
So yes. I hate blocking. And without the drum machine to channel the rage I feel quite proud of myself for not throwing the whole set up out the window. I did, however, see fit to distract myself with what could have been step by step pics but turned into me messing about with a bowl of water, a sodden shawl and my crappy snappy Nikon…
It’s a bit nerve wracking dumping your intricate lacy shawl in a bowl of water before stabbing it with metal sticks and pins and wrenching it out to twice it’s original size. But after pinning it back down for the tenth time and re-threading the wires because they keep catching on everything the aggression part of ‘aggressive blocking’ really kicks in and caution goes out the window (rather than the blocking mat).
With this pattern the blocking wires can run along through the edge points in a straight line – which I hadn’t figured out last time I made this shawl. It’s a lot easier (or at least more even!) to dispense with a single pin for each point. The shawl can then be pulled out with even pressure – and shape! – across the whole fabric.
And it worked! It’s HUGE!
And here’s a picture to be going on with…