A slightly failed experiment

I’m calling it Haida Gwaii, a sorta-crescent-shaped shawl with crests of the wave.

Crescent shawls seem all the rage on Ravelry, but I can’t admit that I like their wide and shallow shapes. Still, why not push some of my self-imposed boundaries?

The shawl needed to fulfill the following criteria:

  • form a crescent shape, or something like one (the latter point the most salient)
  • be knitted from the top down
  • use as much of the yarn as possible

On count one, I’m not sure what to call the final shape, although perhaps one could qualify it as a very shallow crescent since it lacks much of a curve at all. Oh well. We could call it a learning curve, I guess…bwahaha! Anyway, apparently knitting without overly much prior thinking results in this kind of shape. At least it’s not a sweater with three sleeves.

On count two, anything knitted from the bottom-up constitutes a deal-breaker for me.

On count three, well, what to say? Luck held. I finished the last crochet loop with approximately 3 meters of yarn left. Admittedly, I had planned 3 repeats of the crest of the wave, but the lack of yarn thwarted me and I can’t say that I mind: the balance of stockinette to lace looks better with only 2 repeats.

Now for a caveat, or Something That I Consider A Nuisance:

Because of the long garter tab and the rate of increase, there is a tendency for the ~50 sts picked up from the garter tab to form a slight dip at the top of the shawl. I had managed to convince myself that some extra increases at the edges on the first row would solve the problem, but at the end I saw that this trick had only mitigated it. Still, generally speaking, it was nothing that a bit of not-very-vicious blocking couldn’t force into place, and it isn’t visible when wearing the shawl; in fact, it makes it fit a bit like a Faroese.


Anyhoo. Despite that design feature (which, the longer I dwell on it, becomes more and more of an Annoyingly Big Deal) and my antipathy towards properly-shaped crescent shawls in general, I actually like it. The Shetland patterns Crest of the Wave, Print of the Wave, and Feather and Fan, as simple as they are, rank among my favourites. Not to mention the sumptuousness of the yarn – at least to my hands, accustomed mostly to Shetland, Icelandic, and Dale of Norway Heilo. Could one really stand to make socks of such yarn?!? Are anyone’s feet worth spoiling so much?!?

Because of The Aforementioned Nuisance, the pattern will not be available, unless sufficient clamouring on the interwubz convinces me that there are dozens of deprived knitters wanting to knit this peculiarly-shaped shawl. (I’m not holding my breath waiting for such a situation to arise. But I will get to work on Haida Gwaii 2.0, since I can’t bear the thought of being pwned by a mere crescent.)

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