Roots and Wings by Catherine Djimramadji

Roots and Wings

March 2018
The Knitting Goddes British BFL & Nylon
Fingering (14 wpi) ?
21 stitches and 36 rows = 4 inches
US 4 - 3.5 mm
470 yards (430 m)
Flag of English English
This pattern is available for £3.50 GBP buy it now

This pattern is currently available only as part of The Knitting Goddess shawl club, March 2018 edition.

A crescent-shaped shawl, using a set of mini skeins dyed with spring-time and daffodils in mind, the pattern features a simple, easy to work, but effective lace central panel, flanked by “wings” of smooth stockinette to let the gentle variegation in the yarn sing. The mini skeins are worked in pairs using two-row stripes, a simple approach which allows for larger blocks of colour. The shawl is finished with a neat i-cord cast off.

The shape of the shawl and the colours of the yarn were two parts of the inspiration behind this design. The third element was a person. Here’s what I wrote on The Knitting Goddess’ blog post about it:

Much of my knitting and designing over the past year has been inspired by the idea of knitting my family tree, specifically the women of my family. Entitled Formidable Women, the idea grew out of researching my suffragette ancestors (and subsequently giving my first radio interview and talk for the Women’s Institute) and deciding to work on a suffragette colours design. But the more I discovered the more I understood that every person has a story worth telling. Whether it be the story of militant political action, a child refugee fleeing religious persecution, a hard-working Victorian laundress, or an apprentice milliner at the time when hat-making threatened the very survival of a number of bird species- each story speaks about the social history and issues of the time. This particular design was inspired by my great-great-grandmother Frances. Born over two centuries ago in a small village set upon a hill in North Yorkshire, as far as I know she lived out her whole life in the same place. Census records show her as the wife of a shoe-maker and the mother of one child, and that’s about all I know about her. When I came to live in Yorkshire as an adult after a long period of travelling and living overseas I was delighted to find myself in a place full of family landmarks and memories. I spent time visiting many of those landmarks, including Frances’ village. And I fell in love with the place. Not just for its lonely hill in a flat landscape and the daffodils that cloak it in spring, or the wonderfully local food served at the pub. But mostly for the roots and sense of belonging to a place that I particularly needed at that time. I’ve heard it said that roots and wings are two of the most valuable things we can give children. Frances and her village helped grow my roots, and this shawl is for her.