Saturday, August 24, 2019

Live Oak Shawlette


A friend once told me that their team motto at work is simply the word pivot. They even had t-shirts made up with this verb that means to turn around a central point. They have one primary goal in their department, but they often find themselves taking that goal in different directions.

I was reminded of her story as I worked on my most recent project.

Details of wool hand knit lace shawl edge in gray with colorful flecks on dark wood.

In the spring, I bought a skein of Skinny Singles by Hedgehog Fibres in the colorway Juniper. I was so taken by the overall look — gray speckled with an assortment of bright colors — that I missed that little detail about the singles construction.

I was all set to cast on for a pair of socks when I realized my oversight. Singles yarns aren’t as durable as plied yarns, and therefore not ideal for the abuse that socks need to be able to withstand.

It was time to pivot.

After going through my pattern library, I decided to make the Live Oak Shawlette by Romi Hill. It seemed to have just the right balance of simplicity and detail to play well with my flecked yarn.

Details of wool hand knit lace shawlette edge in gray with colorful flecks on dark wood.

The cast-on was new to me, but overall the pattern is simple and straightforward. I thoroughly enjoyed knitting this shawlette, watching the colors come together as the center stockinette took the shape of a semicircle while the outer lace moved the design into straight lines and angles.

Although I’ve made plenty of scarves, I rarely make shawls. When I wear one, I feel like I may as well be wrapped in a blanket. But at about 40 inches across (102 cm) and 13 inches high (33 cm), this shawlette feels more like a playful scarf. (And the pattern includes instructions for a larger version, for those of you who prefer a full shawl.)

Wool hand knit lace scarf in gray with colorful flecks draped on a metal ladder in front of a blue wall.

This is one pivot that I’m glad I made.

How have your unexpected turns worked out recently?

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