I spend kind of a lot of time on Ravelry peeping at other people's projects. I do it the way some people read House & Garden or Vogue. I'm always looking for inspiration and interesting twists on patterns. I've found that there are some crafters whose work I almost love. PetraO is one of those. She has such an amazing sense of color, usually pairing solids with solids (which is totally up my alley; I dress almost entirely in solids or horizontal stripes). I've been particularly taken with her shawl modifications. She knits lace shawls according to the pattern and then crochets a border in a contrasting color. It's the perfect way to take something that could look frumpy or very Renaissance Faire (you know what I mean) and make it fresh, pretty and modern.
So I totally bit her style.
Twice. So far.
Pattern: Diamond Knit Shawl, by Lion Brand (free)
Yarn: Sheep Shop Sheep 3 (discontinued) - body; Wollemeise Sockenwoll 80/20 twin (border)
Start: July 29
Finished: August 2
This worked up so quickly, I could hardly believe it. The pattern is so well written with short, simple repeats. The Sheep Shop yarn is no longer available as the company went out of business, which is too bad because it is lovely (it was also expensive, but I got this on deep discount at Webs last fall). A wool/silk blend it's soft and snuggly against the skin and has a wonderful drape.
Despite the silk content, the yarn gives good stitch definition. The pink is so pink, so sweet, that I knew I needed something bold to make it less saccharine. I considered green, but thought it would look too preppy. I had the red Wollmeise on hand (color is Herzblut, which means lifeblood in German) and decided it would add the right amount of aggression to the shawl.
I had no one particular in mind while I was knitting this, but once I finished the border, I knew it was for me. Mine, all mine.
Just a few days afer finishing #1, I cast on for #2.
Pattern: Diamond Knit Shawl, by Lion Brand
Yarn: Nashua Handknits Creative Focus Worsted (main); Spud & Chloe Fine (border)
Started: August 6
Finished: August 13
This one took me longer to finish, in part because the yarn was less fun to work with. It's a woolly single ply, so will be warm, but was a bit splitty and not as soft as the Sheep 3. I think that softness can be overrated sometimes; it's not the only think one wants in a knitted garment, or we would all run about in angora undergarments wouldn't we? No, that this is woolly gives it substance, makes it appropriate for cold winter days.
Again, I considered a lot of different colors for the border. A straw yellow was an early contender, but I decided to go with something that would jump out a bit more. I have to say I really, really like this one, too. The resulting shawl is less femmy that the first which makes it an appropriate gift for any number of my friends. I have an idea where I'll be sending this, but don't want to let the cat out of the bag just yet.
Tack så mycket for the inspiration PetraO!
See what I mean about solids and stripes? I'm dressed like a Kool-Aid multi pack.