Thursday, December 30, 2010

Green Shawl

Bramble and her 2010 kids, Frappucino and Fritillary
This shawl started with our angora goat doe Bramble's spring 2010 fleece. We gave her her spring hair cut on a beautiful day in early April. The trees on the hill behind our house were just leafing out.

Look at all those colors, I thought, "and they call every one of them "Green." That was the genesis of this shawl."

I spun Bramble's fleece raw, right from the bag. After I had spun and plied all six skeins, I washed them in the kitchen sink and hung the yarns to dry on our front porch in the gentle spring breezes. 

I asked Lena to dye them all with blues and yellows. She worked her handpainting magic with the Jacquard dyes and the result was exactly what I had hoped for - Spring greens!

I started weaving the shawl on my 7-foot triloom. I did it plain weave, without counting any patterns. I wanted the texture of the mohair and the beauty of the color to stand out. I hoped to have the shawl done for the Off the Beaten Path Studio Tour the third weekend in September, but it didn't make it.

October 21 was the Sheep to Shawl competition at the Ozark Folk Center. I was determined to have my green mohair shawl done for that day. I was not competing, but I knew that many people who would appreciate the beauty of this piece would be there.

On the loom hand knotting the fringe

It took me until almost 1:00 a.m. to finish tying the last fringe on this gorgeous green shawl, but I finished it. Many, many people admired it that day and they have everywhere I've shown it since then. Many people have said that this one is too beautiful to sell, they tell me I have to keep it.

Such a snuggly warm bit of spring

Yesterday, while I was laughing, feeling young, playing tourist and taking a picture of a flute player on the 16th street mall in Denver, someone stole this shawl.
We talked to the motor cycle cops, the information guys and people in stores around. They were nice, but amused at our naivete'. One asked us where we were from.

I spent the night with my heart feeling broken, I loved this shawl and had decided to keep it for myself. Suddenly I was grieving all the loses of the last four years. Poor Shawn, he did his best to console me. 

One of the things that hurt the most was that now this beautiful piece, that I had put easily a hundred hours into, was separated from this story of its making. How important are the stories... to me, they are the joy of things.

I hope my spring green shawl keeps someone warm in Denver this cold winter and perhaps it will bring joy to someone's life.


Unknown said...

Well, if that doesn't put a huge damper on your visit! Dang big city folk anyway. I so enjoyed our short visit. If it is any consolation, Leo LOVES his new "Green Sheep" book. We saw a lot of eachother this weekend and must have been through it a dozen times. Then he would go out and see the Black Sheep (with carrots). Homer, Pokey and the geese liked that a lot.

Wendy said...

Aw, I didn't know this had happened and now I feel bad for mentioning the shawl as the first day I met you at Sheep to Shawl! :( Waah.

I'm sorry someone got it. What is with people??