Adapted from Nina’s Ann Arbor pattern
Monday February 04th 2008, 12:35 pm
Filed under: "Wrapped in Comfort",Amaryllis,Knit

scarf from Nina’s Ann Arbor shawl patternTechnical stuff first: in “Wrapped in Comfort,” I give the stitch counts in the stitch patterns so that you can downsize and make a scarf out of any of the shawls; cast on so many repeats and go. This is one repeat of Nina’s Ann Arbor Shawl pattern with an extra stitch at each side, so, cast on 23 and knit till you’re done. This isn’t blocked yet, and even when I do, it will stay fluid and drapey in this yarn. This is one skein of Blue Sky Alpacas’ AlpacaSilk yarn, some of the very best baby alpaca out there: silky, shimmery, gorgeous, and durable enough that I couldn’t break the strand with my hands when I was done, I had to go get a pair of scissors.

I named Nina’s shawl for where she went to school at the University of Michigan, as I wrote in the book. But the look of it also reminds me of the climbing bougainvillea that was blooming freely here when we moved to California, in vivid, cheerful colors that were startling compared to the gray/white aging-winter snowscape we were leaving behind.

The first time I remember seeing bougainvillea blooming was on the trip to New Orleans when I was a teenager. We ate at the Commodore Inn, a beautiful old place that Katrina later wiped out (I don’t know if it’s been brought back; my attempts at googling it would suggest it has not, but I’d love to hear differently.) The bougainvillea climbed to the second-story balcony like Romeo impatient to see Juliet, deep green leaves and bright fuschia flowers spilling freely over the balustrade, a grand bouquet tossed at the eyes of the diners below. Gorgeous.

(Update: I thought I’d add in a photo of the current state of my amaryllis crop.  The really tall one waiting to open up?  That’s Lene’s.)

forest of amaryllises

11 Comments so far
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Beautiful scarf. I so love yarn with silk in it for lace knitting. I may have to get some blue skies alpaca yarn, I keep hearing about it. I love bougainvillea. None around here though, I get excited when I spot some.

Comment by Vicki 02.04.08 @ 2:05 pm

your scarf is really pretty! Sorry not to chatty today

Comment by Danielle from SW Missouri 02.04.08 @ 3:49 pm

I noticed you use a silk blend a lot when knitting your shawls and scarves. I have only knit one scarf with Silky Wool, which felt more wooly than silky. I think I will try something silkier for my next lace project.

Comment by Lisa 02.04.08 @ 6:14 pm

Yup, definitely looks climbing-plant-like. Very pretty.

Comment by Carol 02.04.08 @ 8:19 pm

Beautiful Alison. Both the scarf and your flowers.

Comment by Tiny Tyrant 02.04.08 @ 8:25 pm

So pretty (the scarf) and I’m literally teary-eyed at the flower struggling to bloom. Of course, I’m all touchy feely about plants anyway but, seriously, nothing makes me weep with hopeful joy like a flower patiently but diligently working toward that GREAT BIG MOMENT!

Comment by farm-witch 02.04.08 @ 9:33 pm

The scarf is just beautiful! I have to try this yarn.I was given a beautiful red bougainvillea for Mother’s day a few years ago, but our Tenn. weather killed it. California has it’s good points. 🙂

Comment by Toni 02.05.08 @ 7:04 am

Your scarf is just lovely, and I may have to pick up some of that AlpacaSilk yarn. I’ve suddenly become attracted to lace (it may be because I’m making an afghan out of Noro and while it looks great it’s pretty heavy in my hands)!

Comment by no-blog-rachel 02.05.08 @ 7:20 am

I think that’s one of my favorites of your patterns. Beautiful scarf. Thanks, by the way, for impressing upon us that we can make scarves rather than shawls by using fewer repeats. It’s very helpful. I’m also so glad to know that yarn is fluid and drapey. A scarf is so much more fun to wear when it IS fluid and drapey.

Comment by RobinM 02.05.08 @ 8:27 am

whoa, Nellie! That thing looks like it’s either on steroids or a hopeless overachiever. Wow.

p.s. hang on… anyone else seeing shades of Little Shop of Horrors? Shall we call it Audrey II?

Comment by Lene 02.05.08 @ 8:27 pm

I’ve got to tell Alex that about the stitch patterns! The girl is determined to knit lace — from charts. I think it’s a calculated plan to drive Mommy crazier than I already am.

She’s almost done with the Barn Swallow Scarf from the book and is looking for more patterns.

Comment by Michelle 02.12.08 @ 12:37 pm

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