Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue.
I’m knitting Something Blue. I know a bride-to-be and I’ve taken on the blue part of the rhyme. Someone else will have to cover the other three thingys. My Something Blue will be a shawl, my first wedding shawl ever. Now I’ve made tons of shawls but I feel like this should be a special knit. It should be especially special because the bride-to-be is a wee bit touchy about anything wedding related.
You know those crazy ladies that must have the perfect venue with the perfect catered meal and the perfect flowers to go with the absolutely perfect dress? Well my bride-to-be (from here on referred to as BTB) is pretty much the exact opposite of that. If you picture a very reluctant BTB that doesn’t want to set an actual date and secretly confesses her desire to just be married at 2 AM in Las Vegas by an Elvis impersonator and “be done with it all” then you’ll have a much better idea of what I’m dealing with. When I purchased her birthday present, just two months ago, it came in bridal themed wrapping paper. (That was not intentional and it was not my fault. That was Bed Bath & Beyond’s fault. They have a gift wrap station in the store but all their gift wrap is bridal stuff. All of it. I guess only newlyweds need crap for the home and grandparents with anniversaries or kids going off to college have to shop at Walmart or someplace.) Knowing that the BTB was touchy about her upcoming nuptials, I walked into her office with her birthday present while saying quite loudly “This is for you, for your birthday, and not your stupid wedding!” Upon hearing this she viciously pointed at her perfectly innocent assistant and said “See! Jenn gets it!”.
Yes I do. Weddings are tricky. If you have already had a wedding and must now have a second, or even a third (Lord preserve me from that fate) then a BTB is bound to be a bit prickly about the whole affair. My particular BTB would probably be quite happy to be engaged and planning her wedding for the next, oh…. five years or so. But her fiance and her mother have convinced her that the wedding needs to happen sooner than that. Me? I stay out of all those conversations. Life has taught me that as a relationship councilor I suck big time.
But I’m a pretty good knitter. So I’ve decided that my contribution to the wedding, which still has no actual date, will be a blue shawl. The BTB can wear it at her with a $7000 dress in front of everyone one she has ever known in her entire life while a professional photographer scurries around taking candids, or she can wear it with a tee shirt and jeans while Mr. Presley grins in his gold lame’ jacket. I’m officially supportive of either option. I just want her to have something special, something that is just for her, something that didn’t require hours of painful bargaining wherein she tries to make her loved ones happy while holding in soul-crushing panic.
I using some blue handspun that has been kicking around in my stash for a few years. The fiber source is Frabjous Fibers, the BFL Sparkle blend, in I-Can’t-Remember colorway. Its a very soft, bouncy 2-ply yarn made with 70% Blue faced Leicester, 30% nylon sparkle. Its a (mostly) aran weight and I’m knitting it on a US size 9 needle.
The lace patterns I’m using are both old, traditional Dutch patterns. The zig-zag line motif on the two side panels is called “Marriage Lines”. Years ago I told myself that if I ever knit a wedding shawl, it would have to have Marriage Lines in it. That’s just a no-brainer, right? Right. You can find it in Barbara Walker’s First Treasury on page 198.
But when I was laying out my shawl I realized I needed something to put in the center panel. Being the hyper-tensive type, I wanted another Dutch motif. And what do you know! On page 200 of the same Treasury Ms. Walker has Holland Lace. Perfect.
I only have two repeats done so far but that is enough to show me how its going to go.
The plan is to work a bunch more repeats and then add a lace border of some kind. I’m not sure about that part yet but to satisfy my OCD, the border will have to be a Dutch lace of some kind.
So what do you think? This will totally earn me a place in the audience of whatever sort of wedding happens, right? And by in the audience I mean me, with my butt in a chair, watching the ceremony, and not standing next to the BTB in an absurd bride’s maid dress.