Friesland – a gansey shawl

The coastal path is closed, the car parks are closed – this is the current situation all around our coast lines.

Is your heart yearning to hear the sound of the waves, to walk along the shore, quietly just with your own thoughts?

Sea, sky and wind can free our minds, refresh with the salty lightness of the air and soothing uniformity of the waves. New horizons open up, perspectives for now and later.

In my memory I see the Sea in front of me, smooth as glass or agitated and angry. I see the endless expanse, smell the salty air, feel the wind in my hair and hear cheeky seagulls screech.

In all this uncertainty, one thing is certain: The Sea has always been there and will be there when the current situation has calmed down. The Sea teaches us to switch between chaos and order, between retreat and community.

The ebb and flow, the sea, sand and shore are here, doing what they do – All is quiet.

Today I want to introduce my latest shawl design – Friesland Shawl.

I designed this shawl to coincide with a knitting retreat hosted by my sister ( Buntes Schaf) on the German Island of Norderney before the world shut down due to Covid-19. Eleven knitters from Germany, Belgium and the UK got together for a few days, enjoying beautiful scenery, good food and knitting, broadening their knowledge on traditional Gansey/Fishermen patterns and their history.

We were so lucky to have this special time together before the world shut down. Feeling the wind in our hair, breathing in fresh salty air having a wonderful time with like minded souls learning about the rich history of these amazing patterns.

The shawl is knitted all in one piece from one tip to the other forming a long shallow triangle. A few stitches are cast on and then the body of the shawl is worked in a variety of traditional Gansey/Fishermen patterns found along the shores of the North Sea and Atlantic coasts. Increases on one side create a long triangular shape and a nifty slip stitch technique at the end of each row creates a neat I-cord edge. After the centre pattern is completed, decreases on one side edge shape the shawl into a long flat triangle.

This is a true homage to the rich history and variety of these patterns and has been a total pleasure and labour of love to create. The pattern is available in both English and German from my Ravelry and Lovecrafts stores.

Hopefully it won’t be too long before we can return and walk along a beach feeling the sand between our toes and the wind in our hair.

Stay safe my friends xo

Incantation – Colours of Skye

A couple of weeks ago I finally went to the Isle of Skye, a long dream come true. It is a very long way from where I live (11 hours drive) and October might not be the best time to choose for a visit because of the weather, but I did not care about any of this. I was smiling the whole way there, the scenery is breath taking, and I was smiling all the time during our stay. What is not to like when, as a yarn-lover, you are staying at a place where there is “access all hours” to beautiful yarn – Glenview B&b, the home of Shilasdair Yarns.

Glenview is the home of Kirsty, Simon and their two wonderful boys. This is where you can stay in comfortable, beautiful vintage inspired surroundings, have yoga sessions with Simon and sample his delicious food and most importantly, this is where Kirsty dyes up a storm in her dyeing shed and you can purchase her naturally dyed yarn. Be prepared to be dazzled by all the gorgeous shades making it difficult to choose.

During our days out on the Island I had totally fallen in love with the colours of Skye and finally settled on three shades for a shawl design I had been thinking of. Inspired by a photo I took I decided to make the shawl using Shilasdair Coara Sport/DK in shades Indigo & Madder, Madder and Birch.

What a joy it is to knit with this lofty squishy yarn! I found it hard to put down and in no time at all my vision of the design became reality and today I can introduce you to my finished Shawl.

I am calling it Incantation – a series of magic spells that the Isle of Skye bestowed onto me.

The shawl shape is reminiscent of wide open Glen’s and is achieved by working short rows, while simple eyelet detail remind of thousand droplets of the many Waterfalls on the Island. The I-cord finish keeps everything safe and in shape.

The pattern is available as an instant PDF download from my Ravelry store to which you can find a link on the right hand side of this page, or go straight there by clicking HERE. A 15% launch discount is available until midnight on Sunday 10th November (GMT) and will be automatically applied at the check-out.

I hope you like it as much as I have loved creating it.

xo.

walk the line – a new shawl design

#madewithloops.co.uk #chrissiedaydesign #walkthelineshawl

May I introduce my latest design – Walk the Line Shawl 

This is my first collaboration with Fibre Artist Chrissie Day, using her beautiful 1 Farm – 1 Flock – 1 Clip yarn.

The colours are inspired by Chrissie’s home high and remote in the Upper Dale where Winters are hard, Spring brings rejoicing and Summers are sublime with the sound of the returning birds chattering and flying and peewits swooping. Colours from wild meadow flowers, heathers and the lichen on the old gates and fences and the sky changing through multiple colours in one hour.

#madewithloops #walkthelineshawl #chrissiedaydesign

Showing off two of my favourite design elements, stripes and I-cords, this shawl is worked on the bias. You start with only three stitches at one corner, work increases on one side every row and decreases on the other side every other row, thus working a long flat triangle which is extremely versatile and can be worn in many ways.

The I-cord edging on two sides hides all colour changes and will give the shawl a clean and well finished look.

#madewithloops #walkthelineshawl #chrissiedaydesign

In the words of Chrissie: “A harmonious melody of colour and texture, creating a wonderful individual piece”

This is the perfect accessory when the Spring sun fails to warm or the Summer sun is losing her strength.

The really good news is that for a limited time only kits are available via Chrissie’s website HERE , but when they are gone…they are gone. 

You can of course also purchase the shawl single pattern from all my usual places (find the links on the right hand side of this page) and this yarn can be substituted with any yarn of your liking. Singles, sock, lace weight yarns or even thicker yarns if you prefer. But please be aware that if using a thicker substitute, you may need more yarn.

#madewithloops #walkthelineshawl #chrissieday

Finished Measurements of this shawl are: Width 208cm at top edge – Depth 36cm at widest point, making this a very versatile shape and size with endless possibilities of how to wear it.

I hope you like it as much as I enjoyed designing and making it.

XO.

 

 



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