One of the best things about a lazy weekend is having an old friend to share it with, someone who knows your rhythms, your likes and dislikes. Even better when that friend is visiting, and not only sits around and talks to you nineteen to the dozen so you can knit and finish a project, but also helps you pin it out while blocking, and then models it for you. So this past weekend was a delight. My friend Latha visited me after a long time, and between reminiscing about university, walking around the Italian neighbourhood and Chinatown in San Francisco and eating and drinking lots of good stuff, I managed to finish the North Sea Shawl from Cheryl Oberle’s "Folk Shawls" book.
This shawl has a fair bit of bounce before blocking, due to the garter stitch panels. But once blocked, it flattens out into the most gorgeous undulating pattern. The colour on the photo to the right, with the blocked shawl, is closer to the real shades. You can see the Malabrigo laceweight working its subtle shade magic. This yarn is too gorgeous for words.
Pattern: North Sea Shawl (Folk Shawls by Cheryl Oberle)
Yarn: Malabrigo laceweight in Damask Rose, used double throughout, on size 7 bamboo needles
Gauge: 26 st to 4 inches over the main lace pattern
Modifications: I shortened the number of repeats to make for a narrower shawl. I cast on 85 stitches instead of 109, and got a final width of 15 inches. The finished shawl is about 75 inches long.
I loved this project: it was quick, simple and beautiful. Minimal
effort, maximum joy, just a variation of Feather and Fan, with a short
central panel. You knit one side and the central panel, then the other
side and graft the two together, which took me quite a bit of time. But
I did 14 repeats on each of the side panels, and got a stole of decent
length. If you’re looking for a simple rectangular stole, I highly
recommend this pattern. It has the right mix of pattern to keep it
interesting and garter to keep it going.
I thought of the process of knitting this stole rather like knitting a largish
sock: 80 plus stitches, an 8 row repeat with a 12 stitch pattern
repeat, to be done twice and with light and portable enough for me to carry
around. Before I knew it, it was done! I think it’s a good idea to
think of it this way, because the tedium of a long, 75 inch rectangular pattern is somehow made much more tolerable that way.