Halligarth by Gudrun Johnston

Has anyone tried this pattern?
Would like to try it, but only really a beginner lace knitter.
Also wondering if it is possible to knit this without using circular needles?
Any help would be greatly appreciated...Thanks

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Tallguy's picture

Oh yes, this is a very simple pattern to do. Lace is rather boring to do, so be sure to have something else more interesting to do while working on this one. It will just take a long time to complete, so don't rush with it. It is slow, tedious work.

You CAN work this with straight needles, but why? It starts small, but will increase in size, and weight. You will appreciate the circular needles when it becomes cumbersome to handle. There really is no good reason for using straight needles at any rate (my opinion only) and I would always choose circular for any project.

Lace is simply plain knitting (stocking stitch) with some holes thrown in to make it interesting. Nothing to it!!

There is an interesting construction on this one. You knit from the point and increase until you get it as wide as you want (or until you go out of your mind from boredom!) and then you do a lace edging that is knit perpendicular and attached to the main body -- again, a very long border! You will like the way it turns out, and be very pleased how simple it is to do. Be warned -- it is a slow (and boring) project, so just plan on it taking a long time. And have some other projects on the go too to keep your sanity.

Circular knitting needles really rock for lace projects like this because, unless you're using a very fine gauge, lace can easily slide off the blunt end of straight needles if the knob is small, or get tangled in a larger knob at the blunt end.

Joe-in Wyoming's picture

This looks like a fairly simple repeat of a traditional lace pattern. The fact that it starts at the point means that the increases are part of the shaping and design, which will help.
I recommend that you read through the pattern thoroughly then take it one step at a time, breaking it down into little sections is needed. Use markers to help keep your repeats straight, if needed, and be patient with yourself and the process. And be sure to use lifelines to help keep things in place if you need to rip back - especially as the piece gets larger.
Lace isn't necessarily hard but it can be tricky. Nor does it have to be boring. However, if you find that you are getting tired, put it aside for another bit of knitting as a break [I often rotate a couple of pieces to help prevent burnout] as that is when you are more likely to make mistakes. Same if you get frustrated...often a time away puts everything back in perspective. Also, you have a great resource here on MWK, all you need to do is ask.
You can use straight needles for this but a long circular will help change the weight so it is in your lap rather than have your hands and arms take all of the burden. Still, it is your knitting so work it however you wish.
I look forward to updates on your progress and the photos of the final piece.

Books, knitting, cats, fountain pens...Life is Good.

drewbrake's picture

Many thanks Joe, Daninaa and Tallguy, much appreciate the advice and offers of help. Will let you all know when the yarn arrives from the good Ol' US of A. Am hoping I can get some mink/cashmere blend from Mink Yarns in Royal Purple, anyway will definitely keep you posted...


I don't much more to add from the other gentlemen. If you are starting from bottom up (a few stitches then added increases) vs top down. having circular needles is a great help. When I have done lace shawls you wouldn't believe how quickly your increases add up. I have never tried simple straight needles. I had a fear like daninaa of them falling off. If using lace weight this can happen pretty quick. And if using silk it can be a real bitch.
I find simple lace patterns really not that boring. (or maybe i am just a very boring person period myself LOL!) More complicated ones where the pattern changes on you or can be quite frustrating for my mind. Only way to find out if it is is to give it ago.

drewbrake's picture

Tallguy or Joe,.....Construction wise, I knit the main body of the shawl first and then attatch the border? Is that right? Knitting the edging pattern perpendicular to the edge of the shawl and k2tog to attatch it to the main body? Is that right?

There are 121 (151) yarnover loops down each side of triangle and 243 (303) held stitches along top edge of shawl. Leave held stitches on waste yarn and out of work.
Return to where yarn is attached.
Small Version Only:
Setup Row (WS): Knit all stitches through the back loops. (242
stitches now on needle)
Large Version Only:
Setup Row (WS): Knit 149 stitches through the back loops (2 stitches
remain before marker at center point), [KBF] twice, slip marker, [KBF] twice, knit remaining stitches through the back loops to end of row. (306 stitches now on needle)
Both Versions Resume: Next Row (RS): Knit to end.
However: in the construction notes it reads as though I should work a couple of rows of the shawl and then start the edging.....


• •
This shawl is constructed by knitting the center triangle first. The center triangle starts with 1 stitch. Stitches are increased by working a yarn over (YO) at the beginning of every row. Stitches are then picked up from the yarnover loops on the edges of the Triangle, and a couple of rows are worked before proceeding to the edging, which is attached to the live stitches of the center triangle at the end of every other row.
It is recommended that you place markers between each repeat of the lace pattern. You will need to add new markers as the shawl increases in size.
Read RS (odd-numbered) chart rows from right to left; read WS (even-numbered) chart rows from left to right

HELP! (Please)