The Story of a Shawl

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August 2012.

I wanted a new knitting project.  I was working on a hand embroidered ring sling for a friend and decided I wanted to knit something amazing.  I wanted to knit a sweater for myself, however when looking at yarn, I realized a sweater was way out of my budget.   I was about to tell my work that I wasn’t going back to work after having our third son two months before. I knew I didn’t need to spend the money on yarn.

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Grant was just two months old when I began this project.

My friend Nikki suggested a shawl.

A shawl?  My mind went to old ladies sitting on a front porch in a rocking chair.  I couldn’t do anything with a shawl! And then I saw the pattern Color Affection.  Oh my, it is gorgeous and only required three skeins of yarn.  I decided that I would try it, even though I still really wanted to make a sweater.  My friend questioned my sanity on choosing Color Affection.  She warned that the fingering yarn would take forever, but at $30 total for the project, it was the option I went with.

So on my way to my great-aunt Martha’s funeral in Paris, TN, I stopped at The Haus of Yarn in Nashville.  I found the yarn I wanted.  I chose pink, light orange and a pink-red. I began the project right after I finished the ring sling.  My first memories of this shawl are at my grandmother’s house as she is mourning the death of her sister.

I worked on this project off and on. With three young children at home, my knitting time was often limited to road trips where my husband was the driver.

I worked on this project on road trips to North Carolina, Missouri, Colorado and Georgia.

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On the road knitting in North Carolina.

 I knitted on this shawl in the waiting room when my Papa Charlie was admitted to the hospital and told he had days to live.  I knitted more at my grandmother’s house as she took care of him at the nursing home while he tried to rehab.  I knitted this shawl surrounded by my family as we mourned the loss of my Papa Charlie.

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Papa Charlie’s Funeral

I knitted this shawl while at ICAN meetings and women cried as they talked through their births, trying to heal their hearts.

Photo by Cindy Sarlo Photography

I knitted amongst friends as we laughed and joked about life.

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I knitted while waiting for babies to be born.

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I knitted at my father-in-law’s as my husband’s great-aunt’s memory quickly started to deteriorate, as she was admitted into the nursing home, as we said goodbye to her for the last time.  

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“Nana” Aunt Hazel

Always knitting, knitting memories.

I love this shawl.

January 2014.

I finished the shawl last week. It makes me think of my loved ones.  Each stitch a part of this last year and a half. 

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A very hard year and a half full of transitions: a move to a new place, death, new friends, celebrating old friends, happy road trips with my family, postpartum depression, and three sweet boys that are loud and sweet.

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Look at how much my baby has grown in this time.

I’m glad this project took as long as it did, it makes it that much more special.

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2 thoughts on “The Story of a Shawl

    Tabitha said:
    January 16, 2014 at 10:27 pm

    Great job! Its nice that it has lots of memories connected to it.

    thevfamily said:
    January 31, 2014 at 2:17 pm

    Beautiful story, beautiful work.

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