Saturday, February 18, 2012

favorite knit

keeping warm in big sur )

( and keeping warm at work )

do you have a favorite knit? either one you've made or been lucky enough to have made for you? this question was posed to me recently and aside from the tiny baby items i've made over the years,
for my own babies and others, i didn't have to think, this shawl is it. my very favorite. it was made pre ravelry so it wasn't added to my page. after a friend recently asked me for the pattern, it felt right to include it.

when i read the following passage, i felt the same, and i had to make it. it truly is either on me or near me
waiting in my truck or bike basket, much of the time. it's held up well, only needed an occasional brush with a sweater stone to remove pills. (i can see it's needing it now!) :

" this alpaca shawl won't be the quickest knit and it won't be the most riveting knit but it will definitely become one of your most treasured creations. i thought long and hard about adding some fancy stitchwork to the design - it's all stockinette stitch - to make the process of making it more interesting, but frankly, when i buy or make an expensive shawl, i always like it luxurious and simple. that way, i know i'll get a lot of use out of it." suzan mischer

i bought the yarn for this project to take on a trip, thinking it would make good travel knitting. in two thousand seven we drove for almost three weeks and three thousand miles all around the north island of new zealand, and this shawl accompanied me along the way. i was lucky enough to not drive or navigate (thank you chuck and son kyle) so i could look out the window, and knit. in may, when we go to africa, i'm thinking this may be the project to bring. maybe in a darker color?
i am wondering, do you have a favorite knit? and maybe suggestions for an easy take along project, one that will allow for a few weeks knitting, but won't need concentration? i'll be navigating this time!

pattern : huge triangle shawl
book : greetings from knit cafe
ravelry notes : here


  1. Ahhhhh an "Namibian Shawl" - I like that!

  2. Ahhhhh an "Namibian Shawl" - I like that!

  3. Lori, I love that picture of you and Chuck. I do so miss those trees. :) Love your shawl. Isn't it funny the things that we connect with? I have a wool sweater that I love. I wear it as a jacket here, it's that warm. I think I have to learn how to knit! :) xox

  4. its BEAUTIFUL !
    and so are you.

  5. I have the most ratty sweater. The button holes don't match the buttons. There was a hole in the back that I patched and I've repaired the sleeves twice. But it's thick warm wool and I bought it in Nepal from a young girl who was just learning how to knit. The picture of you and your husband is adorable.

  6. This is such a lovely post! Without question, my favourite knit is a Garden Plot squares blanket. My Grandmother makes them, my Mum makes them, and so it was the first thing I wanted to learn when I took up knitting three years ago, awaiting my first nephew. I learnt from Claire Crompton's pattern in the Knitter's Bible (you can look it up on rav) which is probably the most complicated version I've ever seen - certainly much more involved than the ones my rellies make, and not an easy way to re-learn knitting! But having mastered it, I've made about half a dozen for various babies and friends, and it will always be my favourite pattern. (I haven't made any for my own family because I have no need, my Granny already did!). The reasons it's my favourite? You can use any yarn, in any guage, on any needles, and it will always be beautiful. And secondly, you are never knitting a large piece, so when it all goes disasterously wrong (as it inevitably will) you haven't ruined a large section and don't have much to rip back. This also makes it wonderfully portable. Aaah, I must make another!

    1. thank you for sharing! it is a beautiful pattern and i've bookmarked it. i love the history you have with it.

  7. And don't you look terrific in it!!

    My favorite is a wool sweater,a gift
    from a client more years ago than I
    care to count. Unbelievably warm,and cozy/
    Still holding up beautifully after many,
    many hand washings.
    (oooh, I just counted and shouldn't have.
    32 years ago. The sweater is old, not me)

  8. Lori, this shawl is so beautiful. I can see how soft it is and it must be wonderful to wear. Thank you for the link. The colour is perfect too.
    Take care

  9. Hi Lori, what a beautiful shawl, I love the way you can wear it with a jeans and a jkt or with a dress and it looks just perfect with both.
    Where do you work? it looks so interesting.
    Lovely photo of you and Chuck, and those big trees!

    1. thank you emma, i manage an antique~vintage shop (two actually),it is a lot of fun, and interesting, i'm always learning something new!

      we are in the redwood forest, found in only one place on earth! it's one of my favorite places, truly stunning, you can read more here:

  10. Hi Lori! I love your beautiful and simple shawl! I can understand that it's your favourite! I thought that my favourite would become my 'Oat field' shawl, but it's not so soft that I expected.
    I think it's a perfect idea to make an other one the same; dark would be also beautiful!
    During the winter I use almost every day at home my 'not favourite' knitted jacket. I have made it and the pattern is nice but it now it looks really bad. Still it's the most comfortable, soft, warm, practical... I don't think I dare to show it...or perhaps for an example that the worst can be the best.
    Your journey will be so exited! I am looking forward to 'follow' you and hopefully you'll send us lots of amazing photos!
    Wishes from sunny Crete! x Teje

  11. A beautiful shawl. My favourite is a hand woven shawl that I bought at a market, locally made.
    Your shawl is beautiful, I can see why it would be a favourite.

  12. i'm not a biggy on shawls, but this one made me fel fuzzy inside.

    . . . i ADORE the shot in the mirror, muy cool!

    thanks for posting, Lori, always a pleasure to visit.


  13. What a pretty shawl and lovely soft shade of grey. I love that you've used simple stocking stitch...and that it has a story attached. I'm sure whenever you wear it that happy memories of new zealand flood back.

    I can't think of any knitting project suggestions for Africa...I'll have to get back on that one...

    Have a lovely weekend,

  14. yikes - how long are the needles to make this? will they fit in the car? i do love the shawl though. depending on the length of the needles , this one i might be able to attempt. great idea for May in Namibia - it can be getting cool by then xx

    1. val, the needle would surprise you, they are very compact. they are called circulars, and only about 5-6 inches are metal, the rest is a very thin flexible cable attached to the metal, the entire thing coiled, would fit in the back pocket of your jeans, (without any wool on it). you could make it easily, i'll send you some needles, or wouldn't it be lovely if we could meet again?

  15. It looks so cosy and warm, as the hailstones batter off my window :)
    Beautiful xxx

  16. Lori, you look beautiful! I can absolutely see why you love this knit so much. Use, use, and wear again would be it's slogan. I love Never Not Knitting's Cosette Wrap: another simple knit. (It has to be simple to suit my knitting abilities!)


    I am also timidly letting you know I am hosting a giveaway which may be of inspiration to you. So sorry for this shameful plug.

  17. Yes, that really looks like a perfect drag-everywhere keep cozy shawl! (and one I might have to add to the queue--just what I need.....another shawl!!!)
    Because my two favorite knits are both shawls and both have been made several times--usually when I'm traveling, because they are both so easy. Citron I really didn't think I would love finished, but I do. A niece also loved it, so the first one went to her, but I immediately had to cast on for one for me again! The Icarus Shawl I've now made 3 times!!! (and I think I never reknit a pattern---HA!)--two went to 2 other nieces, who also loved it as much I do. All of them are big, so you can really wrap up in them--and they take longer to knit--great travel knitting. Before I start packing for a trip--I must get my knitting lined up--sort of sounds like you're thinking that way too!!! Isn't travel grand?

  18. I don't have a favorite yet......hmmm...tells me something about my knitting.

    Love your shawl tho and can see it is a wonderful luxurious wool, thin enough to be portable and thick enough to be warm. Lovely.

    I'd spend DAYS in your store!!!

  19. I still have not found that favorite knit yet, so I guess that means there is a lot of knitting in my future while I look! :) I think since you love this shawl so much, doing on in another color while in Africa would be lovely; then you will have one from New Zealand and another from Africa.
    I hope you are enjoying the weekend!

  20. dear ms. radiance,
    may it count that i have an extra long black cotton hanes sweatshirt with quite a worn opening at my left elbow and whenever i have a chance to slip it on, sans underwear, i am comfy cozy with no complaints?

    honestly, you look great, lori. xo great and warm...


  21. I say yes to another color! It is a beautiful shawl and you look so pretty in it. I hope your weekend is lovely!

  22. It's a gorgeous, gorgeous shawl. And it looks so soft! All stockinette? This may be something I can try! :)

  23. This shawl is "simply" beautiful and it suits you well.

    I can't believe it's almost time for your African trip! I'm anticipating the spectacular photos and notes from you!

    And hey...I'm missing your visits :(
    I know how busy life is though, truly.


  24. There is no mistaking why this knit is your favorite. It is now mine!
    I saw that shawl and said, "oh hello!".
    It looks just beautiful on you.

  25. Lori, Oh my how beautiful you are are! And the shawl is too. xoxo

  26. Soft, soft, soft, softer than soft, like being wrapped in a cloud. As I was reading your post I thought, I've got that book, and I bought some yarn a few months ago that might be just the thing to make that shawl with! It is a perfect classic shawl isn't it lori, and a beautiful colour, and it looks wonderful on you. I love that you can use it as a scarf too, very elegant. Thank you for the inspiration Lori. Love Vanessa xxxxxxxxxx

  27. Ooooh, I can see why it's your favorite, so soft and lovely, and the color is so perfect!

  28. It looks like a lovely shawl all warm and snuggly!

    I think right now my two favorites are two sweaters my Mom has made me (one was my Christmas sweater last year, the other a Christmas present two years before). I could live in the sage colored sweater. They're both so warm and comfortable.. it just depends on if I am looking for a button up or not. :)

  29. I think I would love your type of work, but then again, I'd get distracted! The shawl is beautiful & such a neutral color - I can see why it's a favorite. So far, I don't really have a favorite knit, but I'm still working on finding it. :)

  30. So pretty Lori, I like the simplicity of the design and the texture in the braided fringe.

    xo Ro

  31. Oh, that's beautiful. I can see why it's a fave.

  32. Hi Lori,
    totally not knitting related but tonight I needed a wee fix from your beautiful soothing blog.
    And when I opened it - voila! You made your shawl in New Zealand. I live in Nelson, top of the South Island though I am from Wellington, bottom of North Island! You really should come back and travel the South Island, it is very different to the North.
    The only part of the USA I have visited is San Diego, California! This is a tiny world. I just wanted you to know a Kiwi read your blog tonight.
    Love across the miles

    1. sarah, we do have plans to return, and can hardly wait to visit the south island (this time without the kids). we'd known we'd return since the moment we arrived the first time. there is no place on earth like new zealand. so lovely. and next time you come to california, i hope you'll come north. like n.z. there are vast differences between and the northern part of the state. thank you very much for the very kind words. xxx

  33. This shawl has been on my "to do" list forever. I want one exactly like yours. It's so pretty on you. I love the photo of you and your sweetie in the woods. I can see why this shawl is your favourite.

    Thank you so much for your lovely comments on my blog. I'm so happy you stopped by, because it gave me a chance to discover your sweet blog. I really love your style!

    You asked about patterns for my designs. I'm afraid I don't have much time to develop patterns for sale. Pattern writing is not my strong suit, I work from cryptic notes that would be tough for others to follow. However, my designs are SUPER easy to reproduce. Most of them are really basic, it's all about letting the luxurious yarn shine through. Let me know if there's a specific design you like and I can give you general directions on what I did.

    Hope you have a lovely week!

  34. gorgeous shawl, I can see why it's your favorite! And I have never heard of a sweater stone, but am grateful to learn as I have many sweaters that have pilled! I don't have a favorite knit yet, but I am really enjoying my first sweater, all stockinette too, so simple and soothing. I am still using straight needles, but I am told that knitting with circulars for everything is just wonderful and some people never go back to straights. I will have to consider that :).

  35. A worthy favourite, to be sure! So simple, beautiful, and functional - a perfect combination in my books.

  36. I have looked at that pattern in the past, but worried I would not love it. Your has changed my mind.

    I have several pieces I love. I really love the socks I have made. Not sure why, but they make me feel cozy and warm. Even in Arizona I have cold feet in the winter. The other item is my Shalom cardigan. I love it. I love everything about it. I am sure people are tired of seeing me wear it, but I just love it.

  37. i loved it when i saw it on you! another one i have to make one day.... can't think of a favorite knit - mine too are baby knits. what about making a blanket? i did enjoy making a suss design poncho long ago but i never wear it. perhaps if i had made it in all black - although i love the red and orange block stripes alone - wearing them out is another thing...

  38. That beautiful shawl has been in the back of my mind ever since I bought the Knit Cafe book entirely because of it. :) Yours is stunning.

    My default travel project is always plain stockinette socks. They're small, easy but interesting, and endlessly useful to me. What's not to love?

  39. a great idea for a tiki tour around New Zealand. Hmmm... if only I didn't have to drive on my next one. Unfortunately as I live her I end up ferrying around in our car rather than renting and being able to share the driving.


xoxo lori