There is a beautiful shawl that a great number of people are making these days. It is called Colour Affection and there are literally thousands of projects on Ravelry. Don’t get me wrong, I think this thing is gorgeous. And I don’t usually buy patterns, because heaven knows I have a pretty hefty collection of books and magazines. I also love trying to figure out my own designs and think the Elizabeth Zimmerman approach to knitting is what speaks to me. (Jump in fearlessly, she reiterated over and over in her books, in many different ways. Knitting Without Tears made me try stuff I never would have otherwise, and I am lucky to have stumbled upon this classic early in my knitting education.) Back to the Colour Affection. Lovely shawl, beautifully presented. I treated myself to a rare purchased pattern, downloaded and cast it on. And knit, and knit and knit. It is miles of garter stitch. I considered myself pretty smart with the colour choices, and was even a bit smug as I was re-using yarn from something that hadn’t worked out in the past, so thrifty was I!
I finished it, cast off and blocked it. And then my befuddlement began. I am not tall. Nor am I particularly “willowy” in stature. And I freely admit I am not a real “shawl person” though I do aspire. I tried and tried to sort out what was not quite on. Googling Colour Affection and images revealed an interesting pattern. Most shots appeared to be of people standing like a super hero arranging her cape, preparing to fly. Lots of shots of the shawl folded attractively or hanging off of wooden benches in the spring sunshine. To be fair some people, the minority of pictures, are wearing it in the images I saw, but that is where I started to suspect “taller” and maybe “willowy” may be a factor in this pattern’s success. Many of the projects are downright beautiful pieces of fabric. Mine, it’s kind of “meh”. And I cannot, for the life of me, make it wearable. Even when I emulated those people wearing it, as soon as I stride off across my living room, it slides and bunches and the ends come down to my knees. And speaking of those ends, where do I stick them?
I have a plan. A knitter always does.
This shawl gets to sit in a little folded pile for a while. Then, when I can face it again, I will rip it out. The pattern is very ingenious in its simplicity and not too hard to adapt I think. I will re-do this thing, make it smaller. Re-evaluate the colours I chose when the trauma fades. Make do, reuse, all that. And then, take a picture of it BEING WORN!! (Maybe not by me.)
This is a knitting blog, and this is what knitters do!