Maybe Matilda: My Sidewalk Shawl

Thursday, January 26, 2012

My Sidewalk Shawl

I wrote a bit ago about the winter ripple blanket I crocheted during my crochet break over Christmas. A break from crocheting during which I think I crocheted more than I ever have before. It was delightful! Well, this little number was another project I worked on during that crochet break  (and—dare I say it?—it might be my absolute favorite thing I have ever created):
DSC_0343-2 Feast your eyes upon the Sidewalk Shawl, possibly the most beautiful pattern I’ve ever seen. I spotted the pattern (which is free, by the way!) a few weeks ago and drooled over the gorgeous picture for a few days before giving in and hooking it up. I was a tad hesitant to make this—it looked quite a bit more complicated than anything I’ve made before, and I didn’t want to screw it up. But I can only resist the crochet temptation for so long. And I’m glad I gave in because IT. IS. GLORIOUS.
DSC_0350-1 Look at that beautiful piece!  I’m not going to even pretend to be all humble and no-big-deal about this shawl . . . I just stare at it every day, and stroke it lovingly, and tell it how pretty it is. Kind of like I do with Forrest, only a little more tender.
DSC_0347-2 Part of me feels stylish when I wear it (after all, the girl modeling it in the pattern picture looks pretty chic, which is why I didn’t dare stray from the colors in the picture), and part of me wonders if shawls are fashionable. Or have ever been fashionable. The only time I ever see them worn is in old Western movies, by farmhouse wives while they churn butter or help birth calves. But when my fashion icon, Kate Middleton, was snapped wearing a shawl at a grocery store, I was sold. If it’s good enough for Kate, it’s good enough for me. Now if only I can get up the courage to wear the adorable little British hats and fascinators.
DSC_0348-2 Some thoughts on the pattern: this is certainly the prettiest, most intricate thing I’ve ever crocheted. But that comes at a price . . . it was also definitely the most complicated pattern I’ve ever followed. It wasn’t exactly hard, but it did require a lot of attention and counting. Usually, I watch a movie while I crochet, or listen to a book on tape . . . definitely not an option for this pattern. I had to sit in complete silence, by myself, with zero distractions so I could focus on the pattern completely. And you know how, with most patterns, you’ve got it memorized after a few rows and only refer to the pattern to make sure you’re still on track? Or you can at least recognize the repeats in the pattern and predict what’s coming next? I never really felt like I could guess where this one was going—only in the last one  or two pattern repeats did I start thinking, “Oh, right! This makes sense! I remember doing this before!” Up until the very end of the project, every row felt like a surprise (hence the need for total silence while I worked on it). Again, it wasn’t exactly a difficult pattern . . . it just required more focus and attention than most of the patterns I’ve used. And I’m thrilled with the result—I seriously keep looking at it and thinking, “I can’t believe I made something so beautiful!” Just like with Forrest . . . this is my shawl baby. Oh, how I love my sweet shawl baby.
(I used about 3 or 4 skeins of Caron Simply Soft in in Grey Heather to make my Sidewalk Shawl.)
(Also, I’ve been playing along with Freckles In April’s outfit challenge this week, and I’ll be linking this post up to her blog!)

42 comments :

  1. I'll put this on my "try one day' list! So fab. And I really thought those pictures were of the model until I got to the bottom of your post and I was like, is that HER? Then I clicked on the link for the pattern and saw the "real" model. Wow! You could be the real model. :)

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  2. i love it! so pretty. i may need to venture away from crocheting granny squares just for that...

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  3. Wow so pretty! I love the pattern and the color (and your shoes by the way)

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  4. wow! it is amazing...wow! and you are too freakin cute in those pics. thanks for the suggestion on the lights:)

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  5. Pretty! And your hair is SUPER cute!! ;)

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  6. Pinned you!

    Gorgeous gorgeous. I'm in awe.

    Lady you are rocking that growing out the crop look. Tell me again, what exactly were you scared of? There's a touch of the Winona Ryders about you I fancy!

    xxx

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  7. Pinned you!

    Gorgeous gorgeous. I'm in awe.

    Lady you are rocking that growing out the crop look. Tell me again, what exactly were you scared of? There's a touch of the Winona Ryders about you I fancy!

    xxx

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  8. Look at those beautiful watermarked photos... er, I mean, the shawl in the photos. No seriously, this shawl is totally bad ash. And you are so much prettier than that model. She looks like she's lost in that photo. You look like you know where you're going in your photos.

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  9. Oh, I made a Sidewalk Shawl, too!!! I just never thought of taking a picture of it to put up on my blog. Maybe I should...
    I chose a different colour, mine is a nice, subdued green - and since I used up all the wool I bought, there is no fringe.
    The pattern is beautiful, although I had to frog the first 8 rows a few times until I got it right.

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  10. I'm not all that into crochet myself, but I still love your blogginz. "I just stare at it every day, and stroke it lovingly, and tell it how pretty it is. Kind of like I do with Forrest, only a little more tender."

    Excellent.

    Also, I'm impressed by your skillz.

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  11. I love it!! And your hair is looking super cute! Are you growing it out?

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  12. That is absolutely beyond gorgeous. I wouldn't mind having a shawl if it looked like that!

    Kayla
    Freckles in April

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  13. Wow... how gorgeous is that??? I have pinned this for one day when I feel like I can devote the attention to the pattern that it needs!

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  14. Dear Rachel.

    Your shawl is gorgeous. And so are you. Your hair is growing out amazingly and you look fabulous. The end.

    Love, Lauren

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  15. Rachel...that is a beautiful shawl! I am going to have to give it a go!

    And as for people wearing shawls...I have made myself 3 that I use quite frequently and 2 that my mother made me that also get used...I loved them!

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  16. rachel, i don't say this often, because i believe it's a saying to be saved for extremely special occasions, but i'm going to say it now: oh. my. heck. you look freaking fabulous. the shawl is amazing and very pretty + etc, but helloooo supermodel rachel much?? your growing-it-out cut is incredible, and you are totally stylin. way to go, mama.

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  17. Sooo pretty! I wish I was that talented!

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  18. So, um, you look gorgeous! And the shall is beautiful too. Your hair looks great!

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  19. It's weird knowing a model...that wears a fancy shawl...

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  20. Girl! Its gorgeous! Your gorgeous! I love pineapples! Fun and addicting to crochet.

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  21. Oh man, that shawl is seriously GORGEOUS! Nice work!

    preethi
    lace, etc.

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  22. Beautiful. I have this one in my queue. Hope to try it someday. Fantastic job.

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  23. first of all, amazing. second of all, you look like a model. third of all, your shoes. i love it all!

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  24. It really came out beautiful. It looks great on you and your hair is growing! Like it!
    Have fun at the grocerie store lol!!!

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  25. Rachel, you are a very pretty lady! Kate has nothing on you! And I love the shawl. I already went to the site and got it. My plan is to make me one in black Simply Caron to wear on our next cruise. Or just in the house if it is cool inside.

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  26. Thanks for the link to the free pattern started mine last night! Yours seems more airy than mine, what size hook did you use?

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  27. Thank you all so much for the sweet compliments!

    Ashley--I believe I used an I hook . . . I'm sorry, I can't be 100% positive, but I'm pretty sure it was an I (I should have written it down!). Also, mine did not look airy--at ALL--until I had the fringes attached . . . I think they help to weigh it down and stretch it out a bit so the pattern is more noticeable. I was worried the whole time I was making it that the pattern wouldn't be very visible, but as soon as I had the fringe on, it helped to stretch it open and make the pineapples more noticeable. Good luck!

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  28. oh wow. This is totally gorgeous. I love it!

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  29. I must make that shawl! It's gorgeous! And while you might be growing out your hair, it makes me want to chop mine! Love it!

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  30. I've thought about doing that pattern, I love anything with pineapples! I haven't made much with them though, i think I like to look at it more. I'm still not sure if I can pull of a shawl either, so I haven't tried another! You can definitely pull one off, yours looks great!

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  31. Oh wow that is utterly gorgeous!!

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  32. Rachel, you look so beautiful! And I love the shawl!!!

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  33. rachel you are so beautiful and your shawl is gorgeous too! hope you are doing well :)

    katie

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  34. Wow, that is beautiful!! I love love LOVE it!!

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  35. SO CUTE! I'm going to have to steal it though, because there is no way I could hook something that required an attention span. I can't even watch tv without getting distracted by something lately. I would wear it. I would wear it all. night. long. and day. Mostly day.

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  36. I LOVED your comments on the pattern and I LOVE your pictures.

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  37. I am in the process of making this same shawl. I chose a loops & threads lime green color. I'm so excited to finish it, especially being that someone else has successfully followed the pattern! I'll post a picture of mine upon completion. Keep up the good work!

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  38. Hi - I've been working on this shawl - I've started it twice already! Firstly I started with the 5mm hook the pattern suggests, then realising it was too small, I started again with a 6.5mm hook. After doing looooaads of rows, I still think the pineapples look too small! I just wondered what size hook you use (if you remember!) as yours looks perfect, just like the picture in the pattern!
    Thanks! Maria x

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  39. ciao !! il tuo scialle è fantastico!!! ho provato a seguire le istruzioni in inglese ma purtroppo è molto difficile ... :( per caso hai lo schema? ( il disegno ) o la foto da più vicino dell'inizio del lavoro?? grazie una tua fan italiana!! ;)

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  40. I've made this beautiful shawl too, I'll certainly be making it again!
    here's mine... http://www.ravelry.com/projects/woolyknots/sidewalk-shawl

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