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Attention, attention! The fifth day of holiday blogging interrupted! Important news just out! The Swallowtail shawl is blocking! So far everything is looking fine.

I have a question to you more experienced lace knitters: when does a lace shawl do better with a starchy dressing? Any general rules out there?


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I'm coming out of lurking mode to let you know that I would never starch a shawl. Especially one that is worked up in wool/silk. Generally speaking, I would think that if you starched any item of clothing (there are exceptions, of course), all the lovely drape and softness would be lost. Your work is so beautiful and I have enjoyed reading you for quite some time. I will be interested to see what others have to say, but as for me, starch?Never!

Spets har jag fortfarande inte stickat, men Swallowtail hör till mina favoriter bland spetssjalarna. Dein ser ut att bli jättevacker.

Hi Maud
I'm knitting my second Swallowtail, going to post about them very soon.
The first one was made of Wetterhoff's Sofia, that's twice the thickness of Sivilla. The drape is lovely, I would not starch it either.

Thank you! I have never starched a shawl, and I didn't do it with Swallowtail either, but was curious. The gathering of lace book, by Meg Swansen and others, talks about it, but I have never read a blog where anybody would have starched a shawl. But I'm not reading that many specialized-in-lace blogs.

I never have starched a shawl. I prefer the drap-y look of plain blocking. I guess I might starch a shawl of very lightweight cotton, so that the holes of the lacework stay open. As Meg Swansen would say, "Knitters choice!"


Welcome to my blog! My name is Maud, and I spend my free hours grooming Afghan hounds, knitting, cooking, and growing bonsai trees. I am since the summer of 2012 reporting from Stockholm Sweden, entries before that are from Esbo, Finland.

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