Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Good-Bye Knit Shawl, Hello Woven Wrap

That's it. Like the phoenix rising from the ashes, I am going to tear out this money pit of a shawl started in October, 2006. The intention was nice. I was inspired by a recent spinning class which focused on lace weight yarns and lace patterns. Plus, a fellow spinner had knit the Irish Diamond Shawl from the Folk Shawls book. And this shawl was beautiful. I had never knit anything in a lace pattern and had never knit a shawl -- so, I thought why not? -- and better yet I would knit a shawl for my mom. I had in mind the perfect yarn: a skein of bright red mohair/wool bought at Stitches West.

I was on a road trip to Santa Fe and thought this would be the perfect excuse (not like I really needed one) to visit Miriam's Well. This store is full of colorful yarns and beautiful hand woven shawls, scarves, wraps, etc. I thought that I would go in and find a pattern and some needles. Well, like usual, I walked away with the Folk Shawl book, needles, and a good sized bag of yarn.

That afternoon, I started knitting the Feather and Fan Triangle Shawl. Full speed ahead. Well, then again maybe not. Perhaps it was the altitude, but I thought that I was starting the project from the triangular point, but really the pattern had me starting from top down. I realized this after a few _hours_ of knitting and a few hundred miles down the road. I kept my chin up and said "Oh well, so the colors will be turned around". I arrived home, called Miriam's Well, and ordered more yarn. I knitted, and knitted, and knitted, and began to wonder "Where is the yarn going?" I would hold the shawl up and examine it. After hours of knitting, I saw very little difference in size. I stuck to it though but then I realized. . . this shawl. . . well, I think my mom will like it but I don't think that she will wear it. After all these hours knitting, can I really bring myself to give my mom something that she will not wear? No! Can I bring myself to rip apart the project and make something that she will wear? Yes!!

Since I have been learning to weave, I thought to change gears and weave my mom something instead of knit. I took the original impetus for the shawl project, the ball of red yarn, and decided to make a lace weave scarf. I finished it this week, and shipped it out yesterday. I hope she likes it.

I plan to use the black and grey yarn to weave a rectangular wrap. The design is yet to be determined. Stay tuned. . .


Anonymous said...

ha! this story is funny and inspiring since i started that scarf for forest the same day you started this shawl. of course, i ripped the damn thing out 6 or 7 times, determined to get it right. the wrap is beautiful--i admire the fact that you can just let it go and change gears the way you do. i love and am so so proud of you.


Michelle (missymarie) said...

Nothing warms a Mother’s heart quite like receiving a beautifully woven red scarf made by my daughter, Kristine. The texture of the scarf, the rich, warm color and the intricate lace pattern illustrates the passion and devotion that she has to fiber and textiles. It is wonderful knowing that her loving hands weaved it for me. I am truly blessed to have a talented and gifted daughter.