My friend Lindsey runs Waterloo Wools, but she’s been on maternity leave for a while. She’s re-opening the shop with a grand relaunch at the Woodstock Fleece Festival next weekend, and she asked me to knit a sample shawlette for her booth. Of course I said yes!
Lindsey asked me to use her 100% BFL fingering-weight yarn, Tidewater, which hasn’t been a huge seller in the past — it’s a real treat to work with, but it’s less familiar than the usual yarn bases like merino-nylon sock blends or merino-cashmere-nylon luxury blends. We’re hoping that showing how the yarn looks knit up will help customers get a better sense of its possibilities.
Tidewater is a 2-ply yarn, woolen-spun, so it’s lofty and springy and a little bit nubbly. It’s scratchier and woolier than, say, a worsted-spun merino-nylon sock yarn, but it has an almost buttery hand to it — not oily or lanolin-y in the least, but surprisingly soft, even with its halo. (And, when you block it, that halo really blooms beautifully.)
The bonus treat, for me, in knitting this sample shawl, is getting to use a pattern by one of my favourite designers, who also happens to be local, and a member of our Guild. Katherine Matthews has designed a number of beautiful shawls (as well as exquisite beaded cuffs, socks, and so on), and Kiran is her newest design. It’s exquisite!
(My favourite detail is almost accidental, but the way the two picots sit on either side of the centre spine reminds me of a swallowtail butterfly’s ‘tail’.)
For the record, I knit the smallest size of the pattern (it comes in small and large versions with instructions for resizing to any size you like). I used all but about 13 yards of one skein of Tidewater to make it. Full notes are, of course, over at Ravelry.