One of the things I look forward to in the winter is the stark, quiet beauty of the New England landscape after the leaves have fallen. Don’t get me wrong — I love autumn even more, for the colors and the perfect comfortable weather for knitting (inside or outside!) — but being from Vermont, winter holds a special significance for me. As a child, I’d treasure the silence while walking (or skiing) through the forest trails near my home, and the promise of a warm fire when I got home.
For obvious reasons, one pattern I really loved back when I started knitting was the classic Barbara Walker “Twin Trees II” (which I have erroneously called “Twining Trees” for a long time). I added my own touches to it, giving the trees a curved purl “hill” to stand on and an arching window around and above them to echo the shape of the hill and enclose them in the frame I felt they deserved. When I began working out double-knit cables, the trees made another appearance, and it was that swatch that Dianna at the Knitting Boutique gravitated to, asking me to write a pattern for her using these trees — but a simplified version, if possible.
What I came up with was a sort of reversal of the process I used to translate another pattern to cables — I translated the trees from cables to a simple colorwork chart, then began to play with further overlapping them so they could run all the way around something without any gaps.
This cowl was the final product; Dianna has been selling it at her shop, using it to show off one of the yarns in her new yarn line, named “Severn” after the river in Maryland (although it could just as easily be the river in the UK). I decided to call it “Severn Thicket” since it looks like a cluster of trees. Of course, since I sent it to her in April, it got a wholly incongruous springtime backdrop in the photo — and since she has the finished object (and I am out of time to knit another myself) I was unable to take new shots. In the end, I decided it was better to use the shots I had (with Dianna’s permission, of course) when the pattern left exclusivity earlier this month. Since this shot is not the best for seeing the pattern (for the trees), here’s another shot.
Now, as to the price: I realize that by my current standards it’s a little high — but the price was set by the store and I don’t want to compete since they’re still selling it via their own methods. Unless the store lowers their price, I’m honor bound to keep it where it is.
In other news:
Next Spring (2015) will now officially be The Spring of the Big Shows for me. I have no other engagements, but registration is now open at all three events:
- Stitches West (Santa Clara, CA): Feb. 19-22, 2015
- Interweave Yarn Fest (Loveland, CO): April 16-19, 2015
- Stitches South (Nashville, TN): April 23-26, 2015
Also, NEXT WEEKEND I have workshops in the Boston area, at Seed Stitch in Salem on Nov 15th, and Stitch House in Dorchester on Nov 16th — I believe there is still space in both so please sign up if you’re interested.