At around the same time as we were all devastated by the earthquake and tsunami in Japan, one of my friends lost her mother unexpectedly. So I did what knitters in these circumstances so often do. I got out my sticks and a special yarn and, using a pattern sold to benefit the earthquake relief funds, I made a shawl for my friend.
Pattern: eiki, by Janel Laidman. This pattern was designed and released just after the devastation in Japan, and the profits are donated by the designer to various disaster relief funds. According to the designer, eiki means “strength” in Japanese, and I thought that was exactly what my friend would need in the times ahead of her.
The pattern itself is a small shawl, the main portion done in garter stitch and the edging in stocking stitch with a lacy leaf pattern. It will use a largish skein of sock yarn, although I used a laceweight.
Yarn: Habu Tsumugi Silk! In red #52, from the stash. Japanese yarn, for a friend who loves this yarn, for a pattern to aid Japan. Couldn’t have been more perfect, really. And it had the specified yardage as required by the pattern – although surprisingly, I had about 100 yards left over. This is an interesting yarn – a bit rough to knit with, but not uncomfortably so, but yet soft in the knitted fabric.
Sticks: 3.5mm KnitPicks harmony options. I perhaps could have gone up a size or two, but being garter stitch, I didn’t want it to be too open and stretchy.
Time: 18 March 2011 – 11 April 2011. Not bed for me and lace knitting, thanks in part to working on it while we were on our holiday!
I was interested to see how it would grow on blocking, and discovered not a lot! It didn’t really grow at all across the top (about 1m/40″) across, but did grow down the spine, from 43cm/17″ to 52.5cm/21″. So a small shawl indeed, or a large neckerchief! But one with thoughts of strength, love, life and hope knitted into each stitch.