There is one designer I really like in the knitting-blogosphere : Veera Välimäki, the woman behind rain knitwear designs. She uses simple garter-stitch and short-rows to give shape to her shawls. This together with wonderful colours and spectacular yarn. This is a kind of love-affaire I sometimes get into. Continue reading, and you will understand why…
The first time I saw one of her shawls, I knew I had to knit it. It was the Stripe Study Shawl, a classical triangular shawl with the spine on the side. Her sample in grey and red struck me. So clean, architectural, simple and yet so effectful. So Finnish, in my mind. So I made one for myself, not so clean in my choice of colours – I got distracted by the variegated Malabrigo Rios in the skein, thinking that it was much more ochre, and mixed it with a beautiful green Cascade Yarns Venezia Worsted where I probably should have used some deep blue-purple – but my, do I love my shawl! It has been on my shoulders all winter (so soft and warm). And – I will surely knit the shawl again in anothe combo!
Once I had finished that shawl, I was eager to make another shawl from Veera, so I casted on Different lines in Malabrigo Rios (again) and Fonty gueret for my mother. This was so delightful to knit, the lines were so unusual, the outcome so satisfying. The day after finishing the first one, another one was on my needles. The second is knitted in SweetGeorgia Merino Silk lace held double and Handmaiden Fine Yarn Mini Maiden. I added one stripe of Malabrigo Finito, just for the fun of it.
My next Veera-shawl had to be the Color Affection. Still a lot of garterstitch and shortrows, but a new shape, a huge crescent to hang around the shoulders, knitted with three colours. I had a hard time choosing my colour-combination, and ended up having several options at hand (and, yes, increasing my stash). This time knitted with the Holst Garn Coast to make a light shawl for summer. A second one is already in queue, waiting for TIME to cast on in between other projects.
And then, while surfing around innocently, another shortrow-pattern from Veera as a club-pattern from The Uncommon Thread appeared. Of course I did not resist, and besides, I did not know this yarn, what a happy coincidence! So I soon had Play on my needles. It looks like a variation over Stripe Study, only smaller and less assymetric, but is different in the way the shortrows are made, knitting shortrows from one side and then from the other. I liked a lot knitting it, and love the yarn and the colours.
So – here is the reason why I started this post – some weeks ago, a new shawl from Veera caught my interest on Ravelry. Happy Street is another huge crescent shawl, garterstitch, smart shortrows, thick stripes in three colours, two in the same base (grey) and one flashy (pink) that stands out from the rest. It had been out on Ravelry for some hours, and I immediately bought it, without thinking. Or – thinking that I would certainly have some yarn in my stash to use on this. Which is true, I have the pink… This was before I went to my knitting-night and found some new colourways in MadelineTosh light. My heart said yes so loud that my brain blocked out, and in my bag went three beautiful skeins of Grasshopper, Baltic and Oceana (not one, not two, but three skeins- it’s just crazy!). My first idea was (althoug I had Happy Street back somewhere in my brain, but with pink) to make a new Color Affection. I even started. But then I changed my mind (and that is ok, because the beginning of the two shawls are more or less the same), frogged some meters and continued the shawl as a Happy Street. And now I am really Happy about it.
I love the shortrow-construction, knitting from one side and then filling in from the other (no ugly intarsia at the back!). She has improved the edging with adding some yarn overs to avoid the problem with a tight edge-stich as was an issue with the Color Affection (my first has definately this problem). It’s a happy mix of her previous shawls in technique and colours.
I cannot wait to finish this shawl. And at the same time, I enjoy the knitting so much I want it to last forever!