Tuesday, 28 January 2014

Ta-dah of Happiness.........

As Soon as I set eyes on Annette's Nordic Shawl I was blown away.

Now, anyone who has read my blog for a while, knows what a shawl person I am.


Considered by many, an old ladies garment or something you only clap eyes on in some old victorian set film, well, I just see loveliness and quirkiness.

I have a really soft spot for fair isle, and Annette's Nordic Shawl sort of encompassed a fair isle kind of look for me, that's why I think it appealed to me so much.

Luckily for everyone, the very lovely Annette worked up a pattern. Oh WOW. I knew this just had to become one of my staple shawls.

It was my plan to purchase the pattern in January, sort of, as a 'something to look forward to in the grey January month' kind of thing.

Well, the pattern landed on my email doorstep a little earlier than planned, and this beauty became my christmas week make rather than my January make.

I was so excited I can tell you. I have a love affair with grey. I love it in all it's shades, especially teamed with pinks, so it was a no brainer that this should be done in grey with pink thrown in somewhere.

It was not all plain sailing though. The time spent ripping it all back, I could have made 3 Nordic Shawls. Not the patterns fault may I add. My own, for a) not concentrating, and realising almost to the end, that I had added an extra treble cluster on one side near the beginning, so it was all a bit wonky, and b) I couldn't make up my mind on the colour block. The pale blue had been teal, pale turquoise and green before it was pale blue.

But, I am happy I re-worked it to what I ended up with as, boy, this baby has not been off me for the past month! 



The pale grey is a great choice as it goes with loads, and I love the colour block that I ended up with. However, taking a peek at this gorgeous version, i'm loving the paler shades together too with the grey. Isn't it just lovely? Swoon.

I made it using regular dk yarn, bits and pieces from my stash. The grey is a lovely soft dk, King Cole Baby Comfort dk in 772. I used a 4mm hook and added an extra couple of rows in the main body to make it a little bigger than the pattern suggested. 

I guess the only drawback with any shawl is the ends, the tips. They can swing about a bit and restrict you if you are actively moving about. I don't like to tie the ends in front of me as the shawl can feel rather bulky then. I usually like to make my shawls fairly large so that I can wrap the ends round the back of me and either tie them or pin them together there. This way, my hands are free and the shawl is fairly fixed. I'll also pin at the front too with a big shawl pin or brooch. I liked to be able to make a sort of collar too with them if I make them a little larger.

This time I took inspiration from here and added a bit of ribbon to tie it together. It looks more like a poncho tied this way. I don't know why it has never occurred to me to use the tie method before as it's such a simple solution to holding a shawl together.

Perfect for the school run, as I have my hands free to carry lunch boxes, school bags and all the other gumpf I get lumbered with each morning.

It has been a school run staple (on the days when it has NOT been chucking it down) and seems to be a hit with the playground mums too. Way to go Annette!

Well, I can see a few more being made in differing colour ways. I am totally lovestruck with this piece and completely applaud Annette on such a wonderful pattern.

If you would like to make Annette's Nordic Shawl, the pattern is available here to purchase. Well worth it is all I can say.

So, in amongst the dull and soggy January, there has been something that has been keeping me smiling!



  1. Beautiful shawl. I to am a grey person, in all it shades and yours looks so scrumptious with the pink. I saw Annette's shawl and ummed and ahhed over whether to make one or not, but now I've seen it on you and can see how how lovely it sits, it'll be on my next to do list.
    Sally xxx

  2. Its turned out to be a gorgeous shawl...I love that the playground Mum's love it too..I used to love giving the 'playground Mum's something to talk about!!
    D x

  3. I've resisted buying this pattern - I have loads of shawls, buy I know I am going to give in in the end! I don't know why I am putting it off (well maybe that there are enough WIP at the moment!)
    Your version is lovely - and I bought the perfect pin at Yarndale! x

  4. Yay for grey and pink!
    It's gorgeous. It must be a treat to wear.

    All the best from Thailand, xhaafner

  5. Your shawl is absolutely gorgeous, Vanessa! I love grey too, and your colourway works beautifully. Love all the different ways you can wear it, you look lovely in the pictures. I might have a try at making this, I am always delighted to have an extra layer available so a shawl is the perfect thing!
    Helen xox

  6. really beautiful!!!!! brava!!!!
    xxxxxx Ale

  7. Bellissimo! Devo farne uno anch'io!

  8. Oh. My. Giddy. Aunts. Vanessa ..... I literally just fell off my chair in love! Boy that is one pretty shawl, I love your colour choices too.
    I have already purchased my pattern! I hope i can mange it, i'm a bit of a novice at crochet but i have much determination, I can just imagine myself swishing about in my shawl to be in my new kitchen ..... which at the moment feels like it will NEVER happen!
    Have a cosy week
    Love Jooles x x x

  9. Geeeeeerrrrrd, I absolutely love it! So beautiful. I have several shawls and far too many ponchos that I throw on over my outfits to keep the chill off. I love them so much. Yours is so stunning. The coloyrway you have chosen and worked is effortlessly chic. Bravo Vanessa, you are such an inspiration. Thank you! Big hugs, Em. X

  10. This looks wonderful, just what's needed for these cold wet days! :) x

  11. Totally gorgeous Vanessa - love it, and I'm not even a shawl person, although more and more lately I've been thinking how maybe I should go for it, infact the very small inklings of a design and colours are already tick tocking away in my head.
    I adore the colours you have chosen - and definitely love the grey !
    Kate x

  12. Ermmmm, I guess you like this beautiful shawl! LOL! I love it too - my 89 year old Mum wears shawls all the time so I this this one might be next on the list. :)

  13. It's absolutely gorgeous. I'm a huge fan of shawls as well, I see them more as a kind of hippy-ish, gypsy-ish thing. If I could only do fancy crochet... It needs to be really straightforward for me!

  14. I so admire how well you know your own style. You wear things like this so beautifully. I'm adding this project to my must-do list! :)

  15. That's it, I'm convinced! Seeing Annette's original, and now yours and Sandra's beautiful versions, I'm sold! It will be a lovely item to keep my shoulders warm when I'm teaching my crochet workshops (and give the students something to aspire to!). Plus, I see my friend Jooles has commented above, she's bought it too, so we can work on it together...Chrissie x

  16. Absolutely beautiful! I've been thinking about making one for my mother-in-law, but a) my husband says it's too grannified (she's 81...), and b) she might therefore not appreciate it, sooo I guess I'll just have to make one for myself ;-)

  17. If it ever was an old ladies' garment it isn't now, you've definitely brought it into the 21st century Vanessa. I've never considered a shawl but now I just might. It's lovely. Have a good week.
    Jane x

  18. Oh My Gosh! You did it my dear. You did it!!! Lovely color choice, and yes... I have frogged a few times on my second version of this shawl before I got it right... It is very similar to yours, grey base but with burgundy, pink, forest green and olive green... I'll share it soon. THANK YOU for such a great review of my pattern as well. And what lovely photos. Perfection is all I can say. Love your idea with the ribbon. Might steal that idea form you. :D. So happy you love this pattern and can't wait to see more versions of it. It feels like there is a bit of Nordic Shawl mania around Blogland for the moment. So surreal for me. I'm smiling from ear to ear without doubt.
    Hugs and kisses from me to you.
    My Rose Valley

  19. A beauty. I love the colors!

  20. Oooooh I love your version. I am itching to make another shawl. I'm away at Meadowgate in Feb half term and am planning on a shawl knitting project and I can't make my mind up between this or Sandra's lovely shawl with cherries around the edge or the lovely scarf on the front cover of the latest Inside Crochet. I have all three patterns and I think I will make all of them between feb and march as I have lots of crafty time planned! Much love E x

  21. I love what you have done with it, gray is a great place to start, so much goes with it. Well done,

  22. It's a bigg'un eh? Beautiful lacy edging. Looks cosy indeed.

  23. It is a lovely pattern, I've spotted a few on Instagram. Love the grey.
    I've realised this winter how lovely it is to wear a shawl and how warm they keep your shoulders in the evening.
    Carol xx

  24. It's so very pretty and lovely!! Well done!! Happy sweet day to you!! xo Holly

  25. Aaaaarrrrgghhhh Vanessa it's so lovely! I love your choice of colours. I really would love to make one of these soon. I have some gorgeous Drops Nepal in a delicious olive green thats destined to become a shawl. And I'm still trying to make room in my queue for mustard southbay like yours! Too many ideas and never enough time. Anyway, stay cosy xxx

  26. It's really beautiful - the more I see it the more I am tempted to order my own pattern. I just know I will get hung up on the yarn choice though, turning it into yet another WIP.


  27. oh .. my .. word .. such gorgussness ..... I love it, grey is good, looks specially nice with denim! Am very tempted to make one in time for our winter here in South Africa.
    Pat @ sunshine and a sewing basket xxx

  28. I love your version of the shawl, so fresh looking with that coloured part just before the end. I make a little turnover collar with my shawls too! The little ribbon to attach it is a great idea. I'm a big fan of grey too.

  29. GorGeous!! And it looks fabulous on you too. Love the colour combo. Happy wearing!

  30. I love it, and I love the idea of reclaiming the shawl for the modern word. I am sold! Eleanor x

  31. I love your shawl! I prefer your colour choices to Annette's (but - shhh - we'll keep that to ourselves - :) ).

  32. Really cute; I like the idea of the tie--I have never liked ponchos that slip over the head. I once had a coat that was a pull over and rarely wore it---I think my disliking is that I like to unzip a coat if I get hot---.Yours looks like a cross between a poncho and a shawl....may be we could call it a ponshaw or a shawpon or shawlo......

  33. Oh I just love shawls. Got a bunch of them. I mostly tie them in the back. Can't stand the ends swinging about, getting in the way. I just love grey too, it is so much better than black I think. :)

  34. This shawl is simply gorgeous and the colours work so well together. I've never come across anything like it before but feel sure it will be a future project. Philippa xx

  35. Oh wow, it is indeed gorgeous. I love the way you've added the ribbon to tie it together, I think it's much more wearable that way. The colours look spot on to me. Nice job! x

  36. one word:


    your hard work was worth it!!!
    best, jana.

  37. Hi! I just wanted to let you know that I featured your lovely Nordic Shawl on my blog. You can check it out here:


    Have a lovely day!
    Best wishes, Annemarie

  38. I also am awed at this shawl its design is so Nordic and as a Norweigen & Swede I must make one in my Parents memory. Thank you for sharing your Talented Gift. Susan MJ

  39. Please could you tell me which colours and yarn you used to make this as I am desperate to have a go and having trawled the internet yours is the version I love best. I realise that you have stopped blogging but I would be so grateful for your help with this.
    Very best wishes, Joanna.

    1. Hi there Joanna,
      I don't have the exact yarn and colour for you I'm afraid. This was made just using up some odds and ends in my yarn stash. Many didn't even have lacked on. I have found like for like colours for you though which may be of help to you. I found some in stylecraft special dk. Silver (1203), lipstick (1246), fondant (1241), white (1001), denim (1302), soft peach (1240). Those are all like for like colours. If the lipstick is too bright, the claret (1123) is a good choice, and if you want more pale pink than pale peachy pink for the middle row, then the candy floss (1130) is a good alternative. I preferred the peachy pink as it toned down the red for me in mine. I hope this has been of help to you! It's such a lovely pattern and I get loads of compliments when I wear it! Happy making! : )

    2. Thank you so much for the colour details. I am excited to get started now and really appreciate your kindness in letting me know1


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