The Many Moods of Brown Shawls
March 3, 2009
Even for me, knitting two garter stitch shawls one after the other, both brown, is a little worrisome. What makes a person do that?
I don’t know. It was fun? That’s a good enough reason, really.
The funny thing is, many thousands of mostly brown stitches later, it would not take much to get me to cast on another one. Apparently my fondness for multiples extends beyond dishcloths and miters.
In a these times of general world wobbliness, there is no safer place to park your cashmere and/or Koigu and/or whatever you’ve got stashed, than a lovely triangle shawl with softly undulating ruffle. In effect knit on the bias, it flatters everyone who tries it on, regardless of size, shape or age. It goes with everything, from PJs to high heels. It doubles as a blanket for the sofa, so you don’t even need to find closet space for it. It’s not going to go out of style. Why doesn’t every knitter have one? Why don’t I have one? Must rectify! We have the technology!
Brown Shawl Facts
For giggles, here is what the long-tail shawl (Brown Shawl the First) looks like laid out flat.
Holy KFBs, Batman! It’s heart-shaped, and somehow disturbingly so. The tails measure 120 inches from wingtip to wingtip. Not for the faint of heart. Not for a person who feels that 900 stitches is too many for a row.
The length from the back of the neck to the bottom point of the ruffle is 39 inches.
Brown Shawl the Second
My second brown shawl, seen here lying on top of the first one, is for a smaller recipient, so I didn’t want the long tails. I started with the inner triangle of Cheryl Oberle’s Wool Peddler shawl in her book Folk Shawls, but tweaked it with some early increase rows to widen the top of the shawl so that it will rest more securely on the shoulders. (The soft garter ruffle is not in the original shawl; it is Terhi’s brilliant stroke of simplicity.)
My pal Danielle is taller than the recipient but otherwise about the same size. As you can see, in the front it looks almost identical to the long-tail version.
In the back, it’s a different story, with no long tails. In springy Koigu, this one feels very “huggy”; it truly swaddles the shoulders. It’s 70 inches from tip to tip across the top, and 34 inches from the back of the neck to the bottom tip of the ruffle. I used US 5 needles.
These photos were taken before blocking. The shawl is soaking right now, and I’m expecting it to grow a couple of inches in all directions when I block it. [UPDATE: Boy, did it ever grow when I washed it! The length down the back from neck to ruffle point is 37 inches; from wingtip to wingtip it is 90 inches. Wha? How did that happen? Anyway, more shawl to love!]
That’s all I’ve got. Casting on some Rowan Denim this afternoon, though, for a secret sweater to be revealed in late spring. Do I dare to purl?