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The Stories We Knit

This summer, our vacation was a bike touring trip around Prince Edward Island, Canada. Since we were doing a combination of camping and staying in Inns around the island, I had to pack everything I needed for 8 days on my bike. This meant that packing lite was a necessity – and that included knitting. I threw around a couple of project ideas to take with us, but ultimately landed on Annie Rowden’s Purbeck Shawl. She had just wrapped up hosting a mystery knit along, and the end project just resonated with me – for multiple reasons. One, I loved the soothing look of the movement in the lace, and I loved that it wasn’t anything crazy, as sometimes mystery KALs tend to be.
Another thing I loved about the pattern was that it included stories from the farm where the yarn was produced. This gave it a really personal touch and made me feel a little bit more connected to the pattern, which I really enjoyed.
I’ve really been thinking a lot about the silent stories that our knitting can tell. From the pattern, to the yarn we choose, to the memories knitted into each stitch – almost every project can remind us of where we were when we worked on it, or who we were with, or what the soothing power of knitting was getting us through at the moment. This shawl is no exception – it has quite a story.
Inspired by Annie’s yarn choice, I used wool from a local farm, which is perfectly sheepy and rustic, and cast on the first day of our biking trip on PEI. This project traveled all over the island with us, safely tucked in my bike’s saddle bag. I knitted it while watching the sunset over the sea, in our tent, on a northbound ferry, on a French speaking Canadian island, and in multiple Inns across PEI. It has memories knitted into every single stitch, and feels like a part of PEI itself has been knitted into it.
I ended up finishing the shawl after we returned from vacation, and it only seemed fitting to take some photos at sunset here at home, in the mountains where the sheep that grew the wool that became this yarn live. This is such a special shawl, an heirloom that I will treasure my entire life, and will hopefully be treasured through generations to come.
{see more photos on my Ravelry page}
I encourage you to think about some of the stories your knits have created, and some of the memories they may bring to you. It’s added a new level of enjoyment and satisfaction to this craft I love so much. I’ve decided to share some of mine over the next few months on Instagram using the hashtag #thestoriesweknit – I’d love for you to join too, if you’re so inclined.

 

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