Finding my fade

Yep. You’re at the right spot. This is the blog typically filled with knitted hats and fiddle-faddle stuff. (Or with wildlife photos.) Though I’m late to the Fade party, this is Andrea Mowry’s amazingly successful “Find Your Fade.” Mowry is a Michigander whose “Fade” patterns published through Drea Renee Knits have made a big splash in the knitting universe.

This fingering weight asymetrical shawl pattern calls for seven skeins of fingering weight yarn that play well together. Yarnies and yarn shop owners owe Mowry a big “thank-you.” Her pattern must be fueling fingering weight yarn sales all around the globe. The colors fade into one another with a simple design that Mowry hasn’t so much invented as put to new uses.

Find Your Fade must be close to setting records for how long it’s stayed in the top patterns on Ravelry’s “Hot Right Now” search pages.

Finding your fade is not for the knitting faint of heart. In fact, it’s quite the endurance test. It requires about 1550 yards of yarn and knits up, at gauge (which many don’t seem to quite manage to recreate), at 101 inches point to point and reaches a 30 inch center depth. That’s about eight and one-half feet long. And many, like mine, are even longer. I thought I was at gauge. But I used a variety of yarns, so gauge was challenging. I found my Fade grew to 112 inches after the gentlest of blocking, just to open up the honeycomb sections. I am only 62 inches tall, so this Fade makes quite a statement.

Here’s another view.

I really like the result.

My yarns, from the Fade’s opening gold point to the final purple are, first, the heel- and-toe color from an 80/20 self-striping Bad Amy sock-yarn set, Harvest Moon. I will worry about how to finish those socks some day. But the color was too much of what I wanted to pass up. Next is Rhichard Devrieze’s Peppino, in the Tangerine Dream colorway.  Madelinetosh Merino Light in Gilded is next. It’s close in color to the Bad Amy, but works well. The purple shades begin with Hedgehog Fibres Sock, in Truffle. Then comes Diamond Lake, in wine, from Alexandra’s Craft. My Fade closes with two skeins of Malabrigo Mechita, first Anniversario and then Sabiduria.

Ravelers rate this pattern “easy.” And nearly 6000 project pages are open on Find Your Fade, so there’s a lot of votes that go into that. But I rate it a “difficult.” That translates as “I had a hard time with it.” Only 3100 Ravelers report that they’ve finished it. 2100 or so are said to be in progress. The rest are hibernating or have been frogged.Those are not (I think) typical stats for an “easy” project. Don’t get me wrong. This is a great pattern. I just don’t think it’s an easy one. The honeycomb lace fits into a changing number of stitches, around a double decrease. And the whole shawl grows, or not, while maintaining that double decrease in the center until that center veers in one direction. Nope, not easy for this knitter. Granted, maybe I’ve lost knitting IQ points working on all those hats and washcloths lately.

But this project was so worth it. I will be wearing it on Christmas Day. Go Find Your Fade. For sure. And with the leftovers you can give Mowry’s Free Your Fade a try. It looks much easier and is calling to me. As others have quipped, “What? I just found my Fade. Now I have to free it?”

2 thoughts on “Finding my fade

  1. I just stumbled across your blog & had to say – Wow! I LOVE your Fade! I didn’t think it was possible to like a color combo more than the one I’ve already knit, but Wow! Your’s is Fantastic!

  2. @ Jeannie…thanks so much, including for visiting my blog. I rearranged and rearranged colors, in my stash and in shops, until I came up with this combination and I really do like it!

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