Initially I was thinking to combine the colour with Camel and Lerryn (a rich orange yellow and a soft spring green) however the Tamar blend is only available in 100g skeins and I couldn’t really afford to go too wild buying umpteen different colours to knit the shawl I’d originally thought about.
I didn’t want the skein to be ferreted away, saved for best (never being used) or for someday never when I could afford to knit something larger with it so I looked around for a smaller project that would use one, maybe two skeins, and rather than mixing two or three colours I thought instead to use it in a bold one colour piece of knitwear…..
The colour of Tamar is amazing, the twists of the ply seem to hold and capture light so soft subtle shadows dance across the knitted fabric…. Tiddybrook is the colour of pollen drenched catkins…. in some lights it’s almost a cowslip yellow, when it’s overcast outside it becomes more lichen hued…..
Along with being the colour of springtime catkins, Tiddy Brook also reminds me of homemade elderflower cordial, sweet honey tasting meadow wines such as cowslip or gorse blossom…. the first smudges of spring flowers along verges….. this isn’t the bright golden yellow of buttercups and yellow rattle or trailing vetch but a soft sleepy shade…. the first breath of Spring…when the earth itself seems to be stretching and slowly awakening after it’s long Winter slumbers.
The shawl I’ve chosen to knit is called Karise and is by Karie Westermann, it’s a very nicely written pattern, not over complicated and I soon found myself settling into the rhythm of the knitting…. I’ve not had any real lace knitting experience and so was a bit heart in mouth when I saw the lace pattern was all charted…however I’ve actually found this a much easier way to be able to see what I should be doing …. though I did use a lot of the stitch markers I’d made at Christmas so was able to keep track of where I was in the pattern repeat.
The chart for the lace knitting is nice and easy to follow, all the instructions are very clear, how it’s been laid out and divided into sections is very helpful so it’s really not difficult to soon be able to “translate” the knitting symbols and see in an instant what stitch needs to be worked…at times while I’m knitting I like to pretend I’m a code breaker at Bletchley Park on the Enigma machine, deciphering the knitting code….. within a few dozen rows I began falling in love with the pattern, and it wasn’t long before I’d decided that as soon as this one is off the needles a new one will take it’s place…..(actually I’ve already cast on another one using the un-ravelled alpaca/silk yarn from the other weekend)
The Tamar yarn is a mix of some wonderful British rare Breed sheep which include Wensleydale, Leicester Longwool and Teeswater….the long fleeces the yarn is made from have been blended together so beautifully and has produced a really silky and lustrous yarn…the yarn actually feels quite glossy and knits to make a buttery soft fabric (I couldn’t quite understand the term “buttery” until I worked with this yarn…..it’s a perfect description.)
The yarn is such an absolute joy to knit with, it feels really soft and springy, it’s very light so isn’t weighty and draggy down like a heavier yarn….already the knitted fabric feels wonderfully drapey, like a shimmery waterfall of wool….I’ve probably spent equal times knitting and petting the yarn as it’s lovely to stroke and touch. There’s a slight haziness lifting up from the knitted fabric but this isn’t in the slightest bit prickly, more a soft nuzzle of sheep kisses to remind you you’re knitting with wool.
The stitches feel glossy and rabbit fur soft…. if I have to un-knit a few sl 1’s and psso’s because I’m not paying attention then the yarn is easy to work with, un-knitting my mistakes stitch by stitch, it’s not snaggy and hasn’t split…. I’m using reasonably sharp tipped needles as I find the lace work easier to work on those but so far the yarn has loved whatever needle I’m used …. even though it’s been a bit of a rubbishy Summer weather wise, using this yarn has lifted my spirits and made me very happy.