Updated: Sep 15, 2022
It's so hard to keep secrets! Dana of Unwind Yarn Company and the coordinator of the Into the Wool fiber retreat contacted me back in February about designing a crocheted shawl for the event attendees and I was thrilled that she thought of me! Each attendee received a goody bag that included a 150 gram skein of yarn hand dyed by Dana, a project bag by Tiffany (co-coordinator), and download codes for BOTH a knit and crochet shawl pattern - as well as tons of other wonderful things! Seriously, y'all, if you're looking for a great fiber retreat that doesn't cost an arm and a let and you enjoy the outdoors, then I can't recommend Into the Wool enough. I've been twice now and it's truly balm to my soul.
I mean, just look at how beautiful it is!!
Nearshore is worked from one corner outwards with two alternating stitch pattern Sections and was designed with versatility in mind. The modified linen stitch style creates a beautiful, sometimes pixelated fabric with a wonderful drape and an almost woven look that is easy to work, even for beginners, because the majority of the stitches are worked into chain spaces. The Bluefaced Leicester wool that it was originally designed in blocks beautifully to really highlight the curves and stitches of this shawl, but it can be worked in a variety of yarn types, weights, and even sizes!
The pattern includes a photo tutorial for the first seven rows, a link to an informal video tutorial to further demonstrate getting started as well as a jump ahead to the Section B stitches, plus a color coded chart and guidelines for making modifications.
I wanted to see how this would work up in variegated yarn, as well, so I have now crocheted this design three times! Once with a self-striping yarn from my friend Karen of Round Table Yarns, which turned out just fantastically, if I do say so myself! The blocking picture is still my favorite one, ha ha.
And then I also couldn't resist giving it a try with one of the retreat colorways, too. This one is from Katrina of Honeycomb Hills Yarn and I actually had enough yarn to carry through the progressive row decreases all the way down to one! You can find notes on my modifications on my project page on Ravelry.
Another exciting result from this design was a new shawl pin shape! The smaller pieces especially need something to help secure them at the neck and I've always liked the idea of shawl cuffs, so I decided to try it with wire. Bonus? You can slip one corner onto the wire and then further spiral the wire into your fabric if you like so it doesn't slide around at all!
I even put together a quick video to demonstrate how they work:
Cyclone pins are just one of the items that are part of the new Nearshore collection. I also have several new stitch markers as well as a couple small landscape studies that I really enjoyed creating. Since Nearshore is inspired by the way water moves along the shore of a lake and because I've been itching to explore monochromatic color palettes, I did these two small pieces, one painted light to dark and the other painted dark to light. Ish. There was a bit of back and forth. But I started with white in one and with paynes gray in the other and the experience of painting these two similar but also kind of opposite scenes was really interesting!
I'm so enjoying my return to painting! And being able to explore my inspiration across multiple mediums is particularly satisfying. And, of course, painting is much faster than crocheting, ha ha!
I hope you enjoy this new collection as much as I have! You can find the pattern for the Nearshore shawl on Ravelry and Etsy, which is where you will also find the new shawl pins, stitch markers, and paintings.