This is another larger project I finished over break: the Putney Shawl from the Knitscene "Accessories" special issue.
It's a "short" shawl - not a lot of depth to the back point, because you do fewer increases per growth of side-to-side length (IIRC, it's every fourth row you increase, rather than every other row, like you would for a more triangular shawl).
The front part is large enough, though, though the whole shawl is probably better suited to wearing as a scarf type of thing than as a shawl to keep your arms/ upper back warm. (Not that I have any outfits that really bare much of my upper back; there is almost nowhere I go that a gown with a plunging back would be suitable. Which is a pity, actually, because my back and shoulder muscles are well-toned, and the one time I DID wear a gown with a low back (the bridesmaid gown at my brother and sister-in-law's wedding, almost 15 years ago now), people commented on how well it looked on me).
The shawl is constructed as a side-to-side knit, where you increase along one edge (with yarnovers, which you then later pick up for the edging, which is knit on perpendicular to the direction of the body of the shawl).
I used the recommended yarn - Simply Fine from Green Mountain Spinnery. And for once, I have a complaint: I ran out of yarn.
I do not know if I got a "short" skein (there was a knot in it, which I dutifully untied and did as a join - and at the very end I wound up grabbing the long ends of the tails from the join and desperately using them to work the last picot of the edging), or if this is a pattern that comes close enough to requiring every inch of the yarn that if your gauge is just slightly different you will run into problems, or what. But I will note this here, so if you're thinking of making the shawl - you might want to have just a hair more than 450 yards of yarn for the shawl. (A shame really, to buy a second skein and use just a tiny bit of it). Or plan on doing fewer rows of the mesh of the edging (I think there are 12, I probably could have gotten away with 8 or 10), so there's enough yarn.
The yarn ran short while I was up at my parents'. I did not feel like calling the spinnery and complaining and requesting a small amount of the yarn to allow me to finish off (and there's no way of knowing if the dye lot would match). And my parents' town doesn't really have a yarn shop any more (Ewe Knit closed up a year or so ago). So I was stuck. I knew the craft stores wouldn't have anything suitable, so I was thrown on my own devices to figure out what to do. My first thought was to run a lifeline through the mesh, rip back, do fewer rows of the mesh and use the extra yarn I "saved" by not doing those extra rows to bind off. But it took long enough to do the mesh and the eyelet edging that I REALLY did not want to do that. My second thought was to bind off in a different color, which really rankled (I tend to be a little "Rain Man" about certain things; I get set ideas and having to change how I do something makes the world feel wrong). I finally decided to do that, and went hunting through the yarn my mom had for something. I tried a cream colored fingering weight - right weight, but the color stuck out like a sore thumb and was REALLY ugly.
So I put it aside in anger for the evening. I tried some black up against the shawl but it was bad.
Finally, the next morning I remembered I had a bag of a few bits of leftover yarn I had left up there previous trips when I had completed some project. A search turned up a denim-colored ball of sock yarn which, while it's not a PERFECT match, it blends well enough not to be actively ugly and distressing to me to look at:
It's just the bind-off row that needed it. I'm not sure what I would have done if it had been REALLY short, like I was half-finished with the eyelet row when it ran out. Then, I think I probably WOULD have called or e-mailed the mill and asked them what to do.
But I think this is the first time I've ever run short of yarn for a pattern, at least in cases where I was using the recommended yarn and had the proper amount. (There have been a few times where I did hats or things out of scraps and had to keep my fingers crossed I'd have enough; usually I did). I'm wondering if the knot in the skein meant it was just a hair short, and that maybe this project is one that takes nearly every yard of the yarn required. No one else on Ravelry seems to complain of running short; then again, most people used some other yarn for the project.