Yes, it's true, this is my first time. (Blush). I've never blocked before. Shock, horror! I usually just steam iron the offending pieces gently until they submit. ;-)
This time is different. I finished the Branching Out scarf at 12:50am this morning (yes that's like the middle of the night!). It looked so delicate and soft, and the yarn is so yummy (Jaeger Alpaca 4-ply) that I decided to Do It The Right Way. Here are my attempts this morning:
I never could keep a straight line!
I think it will be fine. When it's dry I'm packing it in tissue paper and sending it off to my Secret Pal; hope she likes it!
Ali asked about the difficulty of the pattern. I'm not into lace knitting, but I found this easy enough. I would recommend lace beginners (like me!) to sit quietly (no kids, no TV!) and work on a few repeats slowly; by about the 10th repeat you should be getting a good feel for it. I never got to the point where I could do the whole thing without looking at the chart, but I did get a lot quicker.
I still feel awkward using circular needles (you don't have to for this but I wanted the practise), so if I make another I will use straights. And I may well make another; once you get into the rhythm of the pattern it goes pretty fast.
Right, back to my secret project - which I happily frogged completely at 1am this morning; no I haven't gone completely mad, just wait and see!