Yup, I've finished (and have been swanning about in) my first ever crochet shawl and I LOVE it! I managed to get it stitched and blocked in time to wear it to a rather special family wedding. It's the biggest thing I've ever made and I loved the whole process of matching up a yarn I'm crazy about with the perfect pattern, spending time making it, having it grow a little as it blocks and then actually wearing it!
The yarn is Louisa Harding's Grace Silk and Wool Hand-dyed (the colourway is Oriental) and the pattern is Lucy Croft's Lime Pickle from Simply Crochet issue 20.
Grace is a lustrous, single ply DK. I scored two yummy skeins of it from a Black Sheep Wools bargain bin at a fair earlier this year and was waiting to come across the right sort of pattern - something pretty and lacy to go round the neck, but not too complicated. This pattern was it! Transportable, easy to memorise and fun to hook. The delicate picots around the edge totally make it.
The pattern uses two skeins of a different DK yarn. I ended up using four of mine (thankfully Laughing Hens still had a couple left - it's discontinued). Really, I went a bit rogue. Once I'd memorised the stitch pattern, I just kept on going until I'd used all the yarn. The finished shawl didn't look like much until I'd blocked it. In fact, I wasn't sure about the colours at all and thought it would be too small. Ah, the wonders of blocking. My wobbly little shawl straightened itself out and grew and grew. As soon as I wrapped it around my shoulders, I was smitten.
And once I'd fallen in love with it, I wanted to wear it ALL OF THE TIME. As it turns out, it was the perfect partner for a particularly wafty and wonderful frock I'd bought. Me, the shawl, the frock and Mr P got dressed in our best for the aforementioned beautiful family wedding a couple of weeks ago. I received a lot of kind comments about my dear shawl on the day (um, actually yes, I did make it myself *beams*), and had a good old chinwag with one of my lovely in-laws (outlaws?!) about how she'd crocheted a similar shawl way back when. Cleverly, I managed to not get any pics of me at the wedding wearing it (sometimes a blogger's just gotta live life and not be all bloggy, ya know?) but I did get up extra early one morning to snap these so you could see it. All in all: love the shawl, definitely recommend the pattern. Much yarn, many treble.