Friday, October 02, 2015

Balla Mara & Lambda

Boy, that was a long time to be away from the blog, huh? I've been traveling and working on projects and didn't raise my head from all that until the past couple of weeks.

But now I'm back, to let you know...
No, I cant really shake 'em down, but I can show you some new patterns!

This episode all started one morning last spring when I woke up with a very clear, persistent image in my head of a wave carried up a length of scarf. I don't usually try to make dream images come to reality, but this one would not leave me be. 

First I had to chart it.

When I was making this wavy chart, I did some research and found out that the lambda symbol is used in physics to denote "wavelength." That's when I knew I had my scarf name. Science and a word with "lamb" in it? Too much goodness.

I made the Lambda Scarf from that first chart, but I could not leave well enough alone. This thing needed to be something much, much more!

Yeah, I was obsessed, alrighty. I spent months on this whole thing. Charting and charting and tweaking and tweaking. I taped sheets of graph paper together and charted out the entire thing as a triangular shawl. Not just once, but twice! Working with the fabric so much helped me to see that the cables look like bricks and the eyelets look like bubbly sea waves crashing up against it (or was that another dream I had?) Loving Gaelic, I looked to see what the translation might be. Sea Wall Shawl sounded too garbly in the mouth, you know. Lo, and behold, I found a Gaelic translation that anyone could pronounce (rare thing), so Balla Mara it became.

Then came all the brain-charring transition from chart to written instructions. Thanks to a very good tech editor and a couple of testers, it finally all came together this past week.

I give you the Balla Mara Shawl!

And the Lambda Scarf!

Now for some yarn info. I saved the best for last. 

When I was tumbling this thing around in my head, I knew the shawl would be great worked up in Mrs. Crosby Satchel, because it is a lofty single fingering and the simple stitch patterns would definitely hold up to some hand-dyed yarn. Mrs. Crosby sent me some of her yarns to play with last year, so I had swatched with this lovely stuff and knew I wanted to use it. I put in a request for some Satchel in Submarine, because why not keep this whole thing about the sea, right? The nice folks at Mrs. Crosby sent me the two skeins I requested and I was off for a lovely time knitting this shawl up. I hope you'll try both my shawl and Mrs. Crosby's yarn Satchel. You won't have a moment of sorry.

The Lambda Scarf is knit with Manos del Uruguay Fino. I have loved Manos yarns for a while now, but when I found this skein of Fino in Delft at Town Square Fabrics and Yarn in Burien, I knew it would become something in my design line, too. It's just lovely. The colorway in the photo above is called Birdcage. I ordered it from Little Knits, and it looks like Mano has discontinued it. You can still get the Delft, though, for sure.

Okay, y'all! It's a wrap! 
And I hope you'll wrap yourself in your Balla Mara and Lambda FO's soon!
I know. Corny. You can count on me for that.

See you soon for some info about a couple of little designs of mine in current publications.
Thanks for stopping by!


2 comments:

Unknown said...

Those are so nifty!!! :)

Jen Hagan said...

Thank you so much!