Here's something I've been working on. I have been spinning a lot lately, having received from a friend one fleece that she didn't want, and part of another from a local spinner. I've been having a lot of fun pulling out locks and spinning a very fine worsted yarn. Not sure yet what I will do with it, but there is still time!
While spinning, I've been thinking about having a knitting project on the go too, just to take a break from the spinning. I found a nice lace shawl that seemed very simple to do, so started on it. I had a cone of a nice bright red, not sure where I got it, and there was no label on the inside. As I was knitting with it, I didn't like the feeling of it. It seemed rather hard and crisp -- it was very much like acrylic! It could be -- I used to buy all kinds of yarns, and perhaps I picked this up somewhere at a local sale and the fibre was not important to me at that time.
This is a pattern called "Ashton Shawlette" by Dee O'Keefe. http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/ashton-shawlette It is made of a couple simple lace patterns, in the double-down style, and easily adjustable. I increased the number of repeats to make it larger, and glad I did. It's a nice size now, otherwise would have been rather small. But a shawlette is a small shawl!
I am including some pics of it on my blocking wall in my Picasa album. https://picasaweb.google.com/tallguy403/Knitting#6022772724284224290 There is a steel beam in part of the wall, so I couldn't stick pins into it. I just used a double-point needle to span the gap! They act as miniature blocking wires, and worked perfectly for me. I also used some wooden skewers along the straight edge. You can see I didn't get the centre spine exactly perpendicular, but it looks okay in the end at any rate. I blocked it upside down, just to get the straight edge along the bottom and then worked up to the point. I have attached a pic of it pinned to the wall so you can it right-side up!
When I put the shawl into the water to wash before blocking, a lot of dye came out. So I knew it wasn't acrylic. I haven't done the burn test to determine fibre content. It blocked very nicely, so I am assuming there is a good amount of wool in it. It does have a very tight ply to it, so that is probably why it felt so hard while knitting. It softened nicely after washing, and has good elasticity in the yarn. I do have a good amount still left on the cone, and I did find another one as well, so you may get to see this yarn made into something else yet!