Knitting the beach

I usually spend my summers on or near Lake Michigan, knitting on friends’ boats, or taking pictures on the beach. I was so looking forward to escaping the Louisiana heat this summer, and spending a few months in Wisconsin, that I started planning a collection of shawls inspired by the beach. A few days before we planned to leave all of our plans changed abruptly. I won’t be spending the summer knitting next to Lake Michigan, and now I miss the beach even more! Well, plans change, so I put together a pinterest board and started working on my beach shawls. If I can’t go to the beach, maybe I can bring the beach to my needles.

It has been immensely fun dreaming up these designs. The deep blue, turquoise, and teal of the water, fine gold sand, the way the sun sparkles on the waves, the patterns the tide makes on the beach; I started imagining how I could translate all of those elements into knitted fabric. I pored over stitch patterns, made charts, sketches, and swatches, drooled over dazzling skeins of yarn, and finally settled my ideas into six different designs. They are all shawls, using three different shaping styles, none of which are the classic top down triangle. Each shawl will be knit in fingering weight yarn and each pattern will be fully written and charted, so whatever your preference, you’re covered.  All of the designs will work with hand-painted or variegated yarn.

I had a few skeins in my stash to start with, but after I decided what each shawl would look like I knew I needed to order more yarn. I found these three skeins online at Little Knits. Be careful if you click that link! They have some irresistible deals on gorgeous yarn.

From left to right: Malabrigo Sock in Caribeno, Feza Socktastic Splatter Dash in Sea Spray, and Cascade Heritage Paints in Tropical Seas

From left to right: Malabrigo Sock in Caribeno, Feza Socktastic Splatter Dash in Sea Spray, and Cascade Heritage Paints in Tropical Seas

The first shawl in the series is the Wake shawl and it’s being test knit on Ravelry right now. I used one skein of Madelinetosh Tosh Merino Light in the colorway Dr. Zhivago’s Sky and I think the color perfectly resembles Lake Michigan on a cloudy day. I called it Wake because I wanted it to look like the wave created behind a boat when it’s moving through the water, and I think it does. The picture in my mind was so specific, it took several days of swatching to get it right, and I love the result!

A top-down crescent shawl with lace patterning on every row.

The Wake Shawl

The Wake shawl should be ready for release in August, with the others to follow each month after that. I’ll be sure to post on the blog as soon as each one is available, so if you would like to be notified you can subscribe to receive email updates below. I’ll be posting pictures of each sample as I’m knitting it on Instagram and Twitter too, so you can follow me there to see each design before it’s released. Thank you for knitting and I’ll see you on the beach!