Unblocked Henslowe

Somewhere between here and there, I managed to knit an entire shawl! Granted it’s a small shawl, but considering my very limited knitting time, this is an accomplishment.

The pattern is Henslowe by Beth Kling, and it’s awesome. The construction of the half moon garter stitch body is very clever, and a beautiful, gentle departure from the traditional triangle shawl shape. Picking up stitches for the lace section is elementary, and the edging is equally easy to execute. Plus, the amount of yarn needed is very small – I knit my shawl using only two skeins of Shibui Staccato in the chrome colorway. I did change the stitch pattern of the lace section for yarn economy reasons: I would have run out if I knit it as written.

Now, you might notice that this shawl is not blocked, and therein lies my dilemma – how do I block this shawl when my son gets into everything? Any ideas? Can I outsource this task? ;)

Last, Gregory would like to wish everyone a Happy July 4th! His shirt says, “Little Patriot” ;).


23 thoughts on “Unblocked Henslowe

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  1. Amy

    I block anything lighter than a sweater on the hallway wall with push-pins to keep my cats off of it. To help with this, I purchased one of those cardboard pattern cutting out boards (a lot of people use them for blocking), and nailed it to the wall.

  2. Laura

    I have the same problem with my toddler. I put items to soak before I put my daughter to bed, then I pin them out and turn the fan on. They’re usually dry by morning, and if I’m quick about it, I can get the pins out before my daughter gets up in the morning. But it’s not easy with a little one! Good luck!

  3. Joanna Ryan

    Gregory is adorable, and getting more adorable every day, it seems.

    I don’t have a toddler, but I have cats and a doggie. I use the cardboard cutting board mentioned above. I pin my thing onto it on the dining room table, and then shove the table near a wall, and lean the whole cardboard thing up against the wall – or bookcase in this instance. That way, it is not inviting to lie on. Everything that I pay attention to, (my book, my newspaper, my knitting, my keyboard) – calls to my cat – “Come nestle on me! It will annoy Mom!”

  4. Rue

    Lovely shawl! I’ll have to add that one to my queue.

    As for blocking with a toddler, I’ll second the night-time blocking recommendation. I’ve been able to get everything mostly dry by morning – dry enough that I can let the piece finish drying while tucked out of reach.

    I’m glad to see you’re still finding time to knit in between parenting and work – it’s quite a juggling act, isn’t it?

  5. Rue

    Lovely shawl! I’ll have to add that one to my queue.

    As for blocking with a toddler, I’ll second the night-time blocking recommendation. I’ve been able to get everything mostly dry by morning – dry enough that I can let the piece finish drying while tucked out of reach.

    I’m glad to see you’re still finding time to knit in between parenting and work – it’s quite a juggling act, isn’t it?

  6. Michelle

    oh, I remember the toddler days! Blocking at night is helpful. I also used to shove the whole blocking board under my bed while my little ones were awake.

  7. Jules

    I agree with nighttime blocking. I also block stuff when the kiddos go on overnights to their grandparents. Exquisite shawl – adding to my faves!

  8. Jessica

    I have a toddler, too! What I’ve been doing so far is pinning things to some foam tiles, then sliding them under the bed. Also nighttime blocking, with a fan blowing over the knitting to make it dry faster. . Good luck. It’s gorgeous.

  9. korinthe

    Nighttime with a fan. For small pieces I use a mesh sweater drying rack from BB&B. They nearly always dry overnight! No pinning, but so far that hasn’t mattered.

  10. Anna

    You can absolutely outsource blocking. A good full-service dry cleaner is likely to offer blocking as well as tailoring and the like. :)

  11. Anna

    My dining room table is big enough for small shawls, and thankfully my 13 month old doesn’t climb up on chairs (yet). But I have outsourced! I have a lovely friend with what I jokingly call a blocking sweatshop in her basement. She does my bigger projects if I don’t have time or space in exchange for coffee giftcards.

  12. Phyllis

    How you must be enjoying Gregory! He looks like such a happy child, and a bright one. And he must sleep sometime, as proved by that lovely shawl.

  13. Seanna Lea

    I don’t really have any suggestions on that front. I block things in a separate room (the only one with a door that cannot just be pushed open) or my cat would come in and snag them. My method doesn’t work on anyone with opposable thumbs.

  14. Linda

    I have a son almost exactly the same age as Greg (born June 15). I block at night or I pin to foam boards and lay over washing machine and dryer in the laundry room and shut the door. we still pen him in at times using the baby gate and moving the pack and play to block him from the litter box and kitty food.

  15. Marjorie

    Your little Gregory is just a doll! So cute! Plenty of blocking ideas above, so I won’t add any. Glad you’ve been able to knit a little.

  16. Hillary

    Gregory is adorable.

    I hope to have the same problem as you … if I can ever find the time to finish knitting anything. Fortunately, i think that I have a space I can close off for blocking but those babies are pretty clever so you never know.

  17. margieinmaryland

    Wow – Gregory is getting big!

    The shawl is lovely – thanks for sharing it.

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