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Lady of Light


This shawl went through a lot of trial and error in the design process. But the result is elegant, understated, quite simple really. Here's Lady of Light.


It all started with the yarn. I had the chance to try out this wonderful fiber combination of silk, milk, and aloe vera. The yarn is quite unique and unlike anything I've ever worked with. It has a soft hand, a beautiful drape, and a lovely shimmer that comes from the silk. But the yarn is somehow more than that. Like I wrote on Instagram, I struggled with finding the words to describe how it feels like working with this yarn until it dawned on my: it's like knitting with mithril.


Mithril led to Lord of the Rings which led to Galadriel, the queen of the elves. (Her Wikipedia page has quite an interesting section on the analysis and etymology of her name.) Coming up with names for knitting patterns is often hard but in this case it kind of just fell into my lap.


The design had to be something that wouldn't take away from the sheer beauty of the yarn. A good proportion of stockinette seemed like the right choice to let the yarn be the hero — or heroine, in this case.


I like the shape of a shallow triangle for shawl. It's a versatile shape, equally befitting for wearing on your shoulders or wrapped around the neck. I'd just designed Grand Fir, a striped shawl in garter stitch, so it was a logical step to try the same shape in stockinette this time.


Then there was the lace — and boy did I struggle with it! I tried a few different lace patterns, each one more elaborate than the next, but I wasn't happy with any of them. Maybe working the border sideways would help? Nope.


What's the oldest design principle in the book? Keep it simple, stupid. I was trying to complicate things just for the sake of being complicated. Simplicity was the way to go. In the end I landed on a straightforward lace pattern that's quite easy to knit but looks amazing! Isn't that that often the case? Both written and charted instructions are provided for the lace pattern, as usual.


Lady of Light comes in two sizes, written for one or two skeins of fingering-weight yarn. In addition, I've provided instructions for adjusting the size of the shawl in case you want something that's between the Small and Large sizes.


A lady with a radiant beauty... what would be more befitting than adding some more glimmer to the shawl? The pattern offers two bead placement suggestions: a modest one and a full-on beaded one. Beads are of course entirely optional: you can leave them out entirely if you want.


I find that beads can make a shawl quite heavy, especially when worked in a lightweight yarn. I wanted to keep mine light and easy to wear so I did the modestly beaded version with beads added on row per each lace pattern repeat. If you want to go full-on beads for a wedding shawl, for example, you can do the fully beaded version with beads on three rows per each 10-row lace repeat.


Lady of Light is now available in my Ravelry store and on LoveCrafts. Share your version on Instagram with the hashtags #ladyoflightshawl and #talviknits.

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#knitting #talviknits #newpattern #shawl #lace #topdown #triangle #shallowtriangle #LordoftheRings #inspiredbyabook

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Susanna Winter is a knitwear designer, creating timeless and elegant pieces with clean lines. She has been knitting for over 20 years, knit blogging since 2007, and designing knitting patterns professionally since 2016.

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