Everything I'm posting this week is quite derivative and unoriginal. I often read blog posts where people fall in love with something they've seen but don't want to copy it because it seems wrong, so they tweak it but it loses a little something along the way. I don't get that--if you give credit where it's due I think it's a pretty big compliment that you like something enough to want to invest your time into making the same thing. This is entirely different from that girl you couldn't stand in eighth grade having the same shirt as you, and then you wore them on the same day and it was weird. This is not like that. This is the kind of imitation that's a sincere form of flattery.
So my second copycat of the week (this one being the first) is a shawl. I know, whaaat? A shawl? What year is this? But there are some fabulously beautiful shawls out there, and if done in the right colors or a swanky yarn they lose that 'granny' look that may come to mind. I kind of want to make fifty million of them as I do love wrapping myself in warmth that is not a full-sized afghan that drags on the floor behind me.
Anyway, if you crochet chances are that you know of the Nordic Shawl, a pattern by Annette over at My Rose Valley. The pattern came out last year, and when I saw one of her versions I literally gasped, the colors were so beautiful together. I could not get this out of my mind, but I kept telling myself "A shawl? You don't need a shawl!" but I tuned myself out. I finally couldn't stand the internal conflict, so I ordered the pattern, and the exact same yarn in the exact same colors (which was quite the splurge for me--it's not crazy pricey but the skeins are small so you'd need a lot for something sizable). I was going to wait until the weather cooled, but I was extremely impatient (as in I lasted about a day).
The start of the pattern is a bunch of granny clusters. I did start to lose my mind with the monotony, but the prettiness of the yarn made up for it. When you get to the colors things move really fast--even with the counting and checking to make sure I wasn't skipping too much or too little. Each row is different, so it makes this section really stand out from the rest of the shawl. My edges were a little rough as I think I pulled tighter on some than others, but a lot comes out in blocking. I've never blocked anything before and am now kind of amazed at how well it works.
I was pretty sure I was going to run out of yarn for the last few rows and I was not ordering more, so I used some of the colors on the edging instead. I like how this came out. And I'm still amazed at how those points came out so sharp just from pinning this thing to the carpet until it dried.
I don't remember if the pattern called for it, but I finished off my long edge with some stitches in white. I feel like this maybe pulled a little oddly where the stripes are, but I had woven in all those edges and what's done was done. But have I mentioned blocking? It even helped with that.
I loved making this oh so very much. I missed working on it when it was finished. Wouldn't this be pretty as a blanket? This is essentially just half a square, so if you kept working this as a granny square you'd have something pretty dang pretty. If I come into a small fortune I might splurge on the yarn to make it (or if I marry money, or if someone gives me a generous gift, or if a few boxes fall off the back of a yarn truck--I don't care, I just love the yarn).
Our oddly cool summer weather has suddenly turned quite hot, so now I'm worried about summer lasting much longer than it's supposed to and delaying me wrapping myself in this puppy without sweating all over it.
I kind of want to leave this laying around casually, so I can say something like "Oh, let me just grab my shawl and I'll be ready" but it'll sound really awesome and hip and not old and stodgy.
I do wish it was a little bigger, but I suppose I'll just have to make another one. If you check out the links above you'll be able to see what yarn and what colors were used, as well as more info on the pattern if you're interested in making one. I'm truly fighting hard not to make more of these. I'm quite keen at the moment on making myself a sweater. One attempt has already been scrapped after a few tries for something that seems to be coming along a little more swimmingly, and I have a few knit sweater patterns to twirl with as well, so it's not like I need more projects. But still...you get it, right?