I finished my mystery shawl. Saturday morning I kitchenered the last of the icord then soaked and blocked. I left it in place until this morning in order to make sure I was getting just as much length as possible out of this project.
I’ve got one million complaints about this mystery shawl. They may not be popular opinions, and I’ll follow up my complaints with final thoughts and pictures. I don’t feel that this pattern had quite as much attention to detail as it could have, and these generally do. The icord bind off really should have been written to be done from a wrong side row. Not only does this make the icord look nicer, it would have helped maintain the directionality of the brioche stitches. Probably details that only a knitter would notice while knitting, but that’s part of the joy of knitting, making sure those details are in place.
The final shawl is odd, the jagged edges I find extremely jarring. Now, I understand that I am going to end up with something odd during one of his mystery knits, and I am generally on board, but I seriously considered frogging the thing once clue 4 came out and I began seeing the finished objects. But I also felt that I was too far in at that point, having kept up with the clues pretty well. I’d knit SO MUCH on it already! So I soldiered on.
The yarn amounts are not, I believe, particularly accurate. I had accurate yarn amounts. I had a proper swatch. I even went down in needle size in order to be absolutely certain I would have enough yarn. I ran out of main color 1 and 3 before even completing clue 3. So much for extra pattern repeats! And of main color 2? I’ve half a skein left over. I don’t mind the leftovers at all. I do mind the running out part, quite a lot. In the end, I was able to finish a row using leftover main color 2, when I ran out of 3, and it’s not noticeable, but I didn’t like it.
I also feel like it wasn’t as large a shawl as one usually gets with these knit alongs, and especially for a shawl that was supposed to use that much yarn!
Toward the end I made a few changes. I didn’t do the changing icord color pops. I just bound off with the reddish color I’d started and finished clue 1 icord with. I guess by that point I wasn’t enthused anymore about the color pops. I didn’t bother with the color pop crochet edging on the large holes either. I like it as is, it’ll do. And if I were to go back and fill those in at some point, I’d just use the red again anyhow, keeping things consistent.
Anyhow, that’s a LOT of talk this morning to get to the basic point, which is to show off the finished object. Here it is in it’s entirety.
My color choices, I believe, were completely on point. And they blended really well. I love the turquoise, absolutely love it. Now, here’s where I tell you how many of my irritations and concerns were mitigated in the end. I felt the shawl was too small for all the knitting, but with a severe blocking, it ended up being very proper shawl size. I forget how much garter stitch can open up with a good hard pin blocking. My too small shawl fears were not realized.
I guess that sort of mitigates the yarn amounts thing too? I mean, I have a proper size shawl even without having finished all the repeats on the pattern.
I also feel that with careful blocking and pinning, I was able to ease some of the jarring nature of the jagged edges. I mean, when I now hold it up, fingers holding the very tips of the top “U” I have something that falls into a shawl, those jagged edges don’t really show up when worn.
Over all, I like the thing. I bet I’ll wear it, probably even more than I wear doodler. I’ll still knit these crazy mystery knit alongs as well, because they are a fun process and I think that the mind bending nature of them is actually good for the brain. It’s also good to be forced out of the box in thinking. So, I am not put off completely, but I had more irritation over this particular mystery knit than I ever have before over one of his shawls.
Here’s a final photo, an up close of the brioche section.
It’s pretty. It’s got many lovely elements to it. In the end, I am glad I participated.