Not to toot my own horn, but I think this looks totally cozy. It’s Cheryl Oberle‘s large-sized Stora Dimun Shawl from her wonderful book Folk Shawls. Knitters have to buy the entire book to purchase this pattern, but it’s well worth the price. There are 20 shawl patterns inspired from folk shawls around the world.
Stora Dimun is one of Oberle’s Faroese Island shawls. You cast on stitches for the bottom edge of the shawl. With regular decreases, a triangular shawl emerges with a center panel. Subtle shaping helps glue the shawl in place even if its wearer is active (or even if its wearer is snoozing in a comfy leather armchair).
Mine is knit in the yarn Oberle suggests: Blackberry Ridge Woolen Mills Silk Blend, in the chesnut colorway. This is a 75% wool, 25% silk sportweight. I normally eschew silk, as in “deliberately avoid using, abstain from.” Silk and I typically find each other’s company icky. But this yarn is enough to make me change my mind. Unlike typical silk, it doesn’t suck moisture from your hands and won’t send you scurrying to your body butter after every knitting session. It’s lightweight and warm–just like the large Faroese Island shawls are supposed to be.
This is Stora Dimun, Cheryl Oberle‘s rendering of a traditional Faroese Island shawl. Actually, this is a not-so-close approximation of Stora Dimun. And, no, I don’t know what Stora Dimun means either. I royally flubbed the easy lace edging. That’s too bad because, other than that, this came out quite nice. It is knit in Blackberry Ridge silk blend sport weight. That’s a 75% wool, 25% silk mix. I generally steer clear of silk because I don’t like yarn to be dry in my hands or squeaky on my needles. But this blend was nothing like my prior experience with most silks (Noro Silk Garden being another exception).
I learned a lesson from the wide expanse of wannabe lace worked over 449 stitch rows. Even on an easy pattern, put stitch markers across the row to mark the repeats. Unfortunately I didn’t learn that lesson until I had moved beyond the lace. The beginning rows of the lace took 30 minutes each to knit and and an hour and a half each to unknit. I did that, the unknitting part, twice before I gave up and just decided to press on.
The good news is that this shawl is too sloppily knit for me to be even tempted to give it away. I will have to keep it and wear it in dark theaters, sitting around the fireplace in dim light, and in places where no other knitters lurk. This is supposed to have a beautiful zig zag lace border. Mine is, well, mostly free form. But with just enough not free form to look all screwed up.
It is an easy pattern despite my difficulties with it. Cheryl’s Folk Shawls book is a wonderful collection of traditional shawls. This was the first I’ve knit from the collection. More are likely in my future, including another Stora Dimun or its little sister Litla Dimun.
This will be a warm, but lightweight, comfort shawl.