Laminaria

I got up before the sun today, and so it happened that at 8:30, when the light was absolutely perfect, and the sun was shining, I was sufficiently caffeinated to be able to notice – and I went straight out the door, camera and shawl in hand.

Laminaria and I headed for the park, and I found a perfect spot to take pictures.


While I was taking pictures, the wind started to blow.ย  (It is very windy and grey now.ย  I absolutely got the best of the day.)


As I kept shooting, the wind pulled it free of the rail..

…and landed my shawl on the stone bridge.ย  I ran to pick it up,

but it looked so beautiful lying there that I couldn’t help myself.

I almost left it there, it looked that perfect.

Pattern: Laminaria, (I invented a size halfway between the scarf and shawl. It was easy, you could too.) Yarn: Silk Thread II (much less than one skein) Colour: Pondscum.

201 thoughts on “Laminaria

  1. Ah, I see the point of waiting for the good camera. The shot where it’s lifting like the tablecloth at the beginning of Amelie, especially — and the last one. You needed photos worthy of that object. One job well done, then.

  2. Lovely! And now I’m going to go move that pattern back up from the depths of my queue, where it has been unjustly buried.

  3. Somebody needs to come up with a better name for that color: it’s too pretty to be “pondscum”

  4. Wow, quite nice photos. The last shot, with the stone bridge, made me think of “Sleepy Hollow” a little bit. Beautiful, with the light and wind. Is this one going in the “long range planning box”?

  5. Wow – that stone bridge photo made me want to hop on a plane to Toronto! The shawl/scarf is lovely, and looks like the perfect color for every season.

  6. Oh, such lovely work! That park is the perfect location for photos of that shawl. It looks like some of those fabulous spanish mosses you see sometimes, ancient and timeless.
    I wish I had such a good location close by. I have 5 FOs I despair of getting good pictures of. :>

  7. What a lovely fall shawl in a lovely fall scene! This makes me very nostalgic for the fall season that has come and gone here; with a wind chill of -33 in Edmonton, I’m extremely jealous of the weather there!

  8. I think the yarn gods knew what they were doing by not allowing you to photograph it until now! It was all planned to show off your exquisite shawl! Beautiful!

  9. That is so pretty!
    The pattern is laughing at me– I have plenty of laceweight on hand, but I’m chicken to knit any but the simplest of lace.
    You’ll break me down, yet. You got me knitting socks, after all.

  10. Laminaria is on my shawl “to be knit” list. And ones like yours make me want to knit it all the more. The pictures are beautiful. But do you think the dyer of the yarn could have come up with a better name than “Pondscum”? I was thinking more along the line of “Spring Peas”

  11. OOO, I have GOT to come to this “Canada” place, if that’s what y’all’s litter in the park looks like!

  12. Ooooh!!! I am purring with contentment!! I LOVE these photos. My favorite is the one before the last, where you can see the stone through the lacework. How PRETTY, Stephanie!
    I was drawn to the shawl to begin with, but now I am completely smitten by it.

  13. What an utterly awesome picture. It looks like it’s about to fly away. Beautiful shawl!

  14. Amazing! The whole sequence is so very Charlotte Bronte. Oh, and the shawl is lovely, too… ๐Ÿ™‚

  15. Picturing Elizabeth Bennett hurrying back to the bridge after realizing she had dropped her shawl as she took a turn about the park.

  16. Sometimes things just organize into perfection. Perfect light, perfect breeze, perfect blocking, and perfect location (plus perfect caffeine).
    Is it time for tea?

  17. Lovely shawl and great photos. Nature definitely has a way of rearranging what we think is beautifully posed into something that truly is beautiful.
    Now, if you also had the coffee mug with you, that would have been one heck of a balancing act … ๐Ÿ™‚

  18. I love the pic in the park- what a good idea. It is the most beautiful color of green! I am having a cup of tea right now as I read your posts for the week and I am American. I almost always have tea in the afternoon.

  19. I am *so* inspired now to frog my mistakes and get back on track with this beautiful shawl.
    I am so glad that the wind didn’t take it the other way off the railing.

  20. That shawl is absolutely beautiful. You have elevated Pondscum to an all time high level. I think I’ll put on the tea kettle and look at the pattern again

  21. “I almost left it there, it looked that perfect. ”
    It surely did. That last photo is perfectly beautiful . . . the way a great Thanksgiving dinner with family is beautiful. Isn’t it amazing how the wind can do so much more masterful a job at arranging something that the best photographer? Lovely capture.

  22. It really DOES look that perfect, resting there on the bridge after its flight. I would have loved to have been taking a walk in your wonderful park this morning and come across such a great scene! Good job – Again!!!!

  23. Wow, just beautiful…and the photos aren’t bad either!
    It’s Thanksgiving week here in the states and I wanted to take a moment to say thank you – I look forward to reading your blog daily – it makes me smile, so, thank you for that!

  24. Gorgeous! Well done, both in the creating, and in the shooting. I’m glad you didn’t leave it, though, as I wasn’t there to pick up after you.

  25. Your photos do this pattern more justice than even the original Knitty pics did. I’ve been tempted, but couldn’t get a real visual of the finished product. Now, having seen your photos, this is definitely going in my queue!!! Thanks!

  26. I made this shawl too but was too daft to remember to take pictures before handing it over to my mother-in-law as a “nice to meet you” gift a week before my wedding.
    My wonderful husband, wanting me to have a pic for rav, got her to take a picture of it for me, but it’s all scrunched up on the carpet instead of draped so beautifully and artistically as yours is in such a beautiful setting.
    Also, I’ve yet to see (or hear of her) wearing it ๐Ÿ™ I’m now trying to devise a way to get it back and show it some love.

  27. I love the color and the look of this shawl. I thought it was beautiful, like moss in the deep forest, before it was blocked. I’m not sure I would have ever got beyond the “just knit” stage. Lovely, just lovely.

  28. Gorgeous photography and even more gorgeous shawl. You have definitely inspired me to take mine out of the UFO pile, first thing after I’ve knitted everybody else’s Christmas stuff…. ;-/

  29. Beautiful! The shawl even landed artistically.
    And now since the day is windy and grey … well, it’s time for tea, isn’t it?

  30. Could you imagine being the person out for a walk, and finding that lovely shawl laying there?
    First reaction – dance of joy for finding such beauty.
    Second reaction – gotta find out who lost this.
    It’s a beautiful shawl. Think I need to knit a shawl in the new year.

  31. What a gorgeous last shot – really, it just screams gothic novel. How lucky you are to live so close to such a wonderful park. That bridge must be so beautiful in any weather, any time of year. Really worth waiting for these shots. Thanks.

  32. Jeez, Amanda — I’m just busy cooking, not giving up on commenting altogether…
    I would just like to say, Steph, that if you enjoyed this photo shoot, just imagine how much you’d enjoy the Finished Gansey Photo Shoot. With Joe modeling.
    (But then you might not be able to share the photos with The Blog. Which would be okay. Maybe you manage one G-rated shot with the gansey draped over a rosebush or something.)

  33. Oh no a lost shawl in the park!
    Lately I found a wallet and turned it into police but a gift of a shawl just sitting there waiting for me to come and find it may be an irresistible keeper.
    Congradulations…lovely job.

  34. You should do a knitting Toronto calendar and use your Laminaria as the featured photo. It’s exquisite.

  35. Art for art’s sake. You and your camera are one.
    And let’s not forget that the Laminaria is actually completed and blocked. Kudos.

  36. Indeed breathtaking! I love the way the breeze started to lift and ruffle it while it was still on the railing. Like lettuce seaweed wavering in the water as the tide comes in and the tidepool fills.
    Well done!

  37. You know, if the “knitting humour” thing doesn’t work out, you could become a “knitting photography artist”! Honestly, these are some of the loveliest pics I’ve ever seen. You really have a good eye. And good subjects.

  38. Gorgeous photos, setting, shawl, the photos tell a story. Thank goodness you didn’t leave it there. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  39. That’s a beautiful park. How lucky you are to live so close! Cute shawl. It’s probably hard to really capture the color.

  40. Never knew pond scum could look so painfully, fetchingly beautiful. And now I see what you mean when you’re knitting a sock, fall down and come up with a shawl. I mean, there on the paving stones – stunning.

  41. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you! 1000 times thank you! I’ve been yearning to see what she turned out like in all of her glory. I’ll bet she floated down gracefully, like a wisp of smoke when the wind caught her. I want to make one someday too.

  42. ps, I’m so glad you didn’t leave her there! That last picture makes me feel all panicky inside. No shawl should be abandoned.

  43. What a dreadful name for the color!!! But, it’s lovely! & yes, it looks like it belongs there but I’m glad you took it home to love instead of leaving it for the next Hobo to come along.

  44. Hysterical. How many of our days similarly go right down the crapper – but never in such a lyrical way. I’ll NEVER knit that pattern, but it’s beautiful for you.

  45. Loved the third picture looking through the edge onto the water. And the last picture – well that is a picture waiting for a story to be told. Once upon a time….
    Lovely, lovely shawl!!!

  46. Those photos were worth the wait. I love this shawl. What an absolutely beautiful piece of art <3

  47. I’m so glad the shawl blew onto the cobbles, not into the pond. Its lovely swirls and eddies remind me of seaweed on Vancouver Island. It’s truly a work of art. And I don’t think I’d ever dare attempt to make it, even in the size the pattern originally called for. No, it would not be easy. I know my limits. I do love those points, though.

  48. I was feeling a bit daunted by your posts about the eternity of those last few rows. Your gorgeous shawl and stunning photography have renewed my enthusiasm for making one of my own. I love to have a hint of spring in the midst of my winter knitting and I think it will be this. Thank you.

  49. Set free like a prayer flag for peace…
    a knitted
    pond coloured puddle
    kneeling on cobblestones.
    ~Elisa
    Americans…. Happy Thanksgiving!

  50. As soon as I saw that wafting in the breeze, my first thought was “and this is gonna end with the shawl in the WATER.” ๐Ÿ™‚

  51. So should you ever want a new career, it could obviously be photography. Thank you for a most beautiful sequence.

  52. Pics are beautiful, thanks for sharing. The shawl is gorgeous, surprisingly so coming from a yarn with a name like pondscum!

  53. I wish that you would do the thingy that allows us to post your site on facebook. Sometimes, I just want to share with all my knitting buddies.

  54. Is there a museum somewhere for awesome knitwear and the amazing portraits of same?
    If so, your photos of Laminaria should be in it.
    If there isn’t, they could be used to start one.
    Breathtakingly beautiful.

  55. That is an inspirational post. Your knitting is beautiful and the photographs are incredible. You are one talented woman! So inspiring, that I’m going to source out some lace yarn here in Perth sometime over the next few weeks, before the end of the school term and cast on Laminiaria on the first day of the holidays. I’ll be hibernating in the airconditioning away from the heat, watching the cricket, drinking cups of tea. I’m currently knitting Stephen West’s Boneyard shawl, which is the level of experience I’m currently at…..so it is only a tiny leap ๐Ÿ˜‰ I’m a true believer in the salami method….break it down into managable size pieces. One stitch at a time is managable….We knitters can do anything we put our mind to.

  56. I have knit many things but nothing as beautiful as your shawl. May have to try something lacy. Am still afraid of socks, have lots of sock yarn just no courage

  57. Just love the way it seems to be waving at you when the wind was lifting it off the fence. Absolutely beautiful, breathtaking! You are such an artist, both with the knitting and the photography (not to mention your way with words….) Thanks for all your gifts to us.

  58. Beautiful! I hope you’re keeping this one for yourself–it’s just your color. (Or colour.)
    I actually like grey Novemberish weather. It makes pretty pictures–as you just proved.

  59. You do realize that for most of us, this would be a life’s work. How do you crank ’em out, and keep them from looking cranked out? Gorgeous!

  60. You realize this is not normal behavior? And I understand it completely. Rise at dawn, travel to park, arrange loved object just so, then take a zillion photos. Said object lands in a puddle, should be game over. Not so. Your love extends to times when SO is not behaving. Aw, isn’t that cute? It reminds me of motherhood.

  61. I just KNEW the next piture was gonna be Lumi floating gently on the water….a fitting home for a pond-scum green shawl. ๐Ÿ™‚
    If you HAD left it on the bridge, imagine what a lovely, magical gift that would have been for whoever found it. You know, that might be sort of fun to do….like the “Read-and-Release” bookprogram where you leave your favorite book in public places to travel on.

  62. I just KNEW the next piture was gonna be Lumi floating gently on the water….a fitting home for a pond-scum green shawl. ๐Ÿ™‚
    If you HAD left it on the bridge, imagine what a lovely, magical gift that would have been for whoever found it. You know, that might be sort of fun to do….like the “Read-and-Release” book program where you leave your favorite book in public places to travel on.

  63. What a beautiful promise of Spring’s return, but I can’t wrap my head around the color – pondscum?
    Too funny!

  64. I can’t even think of the appropriate way to articulate the beauty of your creation. Kinda like how I was finding it hard to articulate my excitement at finishing my first toddler sock. I had fallen into sock hell with several failed attempts at adult socks. Being ever inspired by the YH, I decided a mini version may be the ticket to success and give me the encouragement I need to my own self imposed sock club (SISC). My club may be one pair a year. I’ve also just finished Knitting Rules where everything I ever wanted to know about socks (but was afraid to ask)is there.

  65. You dropped your knitting on a bridge and took pictures of it *instead* of picking it up? LOL
    Yeah, definitely a Knitter!!!

  66. It does look a lot better lying on the ground then you think it would. I mustg go and see if I have any hand knits that would look good lying on the ground.

  67. Well, now it’s for sure!! If you ever want to have a second career, you could absolutely be a crack photographer! What super pix!! It goes without saying (but I’ll say it anyway) that the shawl is gorgeous, your work is phenomonal and the speed at which you work is beyond (my) belief!
    Knit on!

  68. Knitware Photography is so much fun. My hubby has spent many a day at the arboretum helping me to pose the little knitted doll just so among the flowers.
    This looks like it was a great photoshoot. Congrats on the beautiful pics and on the beautiful shawl.

  69. Beyond gorgeous. Both the shawl and the setting. Stunning. You do fantastic work with the camera as well as the needles. BTW, is that the same kind of silky thread that we dyed at the first Silk Camp? If so, did you use lifelines while knitting? It seemed to me that that was pretty slippery stuff & when I lost a stitch, it was *gone*.
    As somebody else mentioned, it is Thanksgiving in the U.S. I always enjoy checking your blog with my morning coffee. Thank you for being there! You’re the best!

  70. Gorgeous! And amazing that something with a name like “pondscum” can be so beautiful. Thanks for sharing!

  71. What a beautiful shawl! I also really like the color you chose to do it in. I’m a bit of a lace addict so I may have to cast on for this one soon.

  72. Gorgeous design. I vicariously knit via your blog. You have no idea how long it would take me to knit something that intricate and huge. To say nothing of how many times I’d have to start over. I am betting MANY MONTHS. Not mere days. Pathetically slow knitters like me appreciate what you are able to complete.

  73. First I was drawn to see your beautiful shawl, then the photography pulled me further along. What a beautiful combination of both arts!
    Well done!

  74. Now that’s what I call, “Art for Art’s Sake”! Beautiful and, as always, truly inspiring.

  75. Holy Smoly !!! Can’t get any better than that . good job on all accounts. I’m GLAD to didn’t Geave it there.

  76. It just looks like a beautiful woman-made leaf that fell from the trees and landed on the ground. Lovely!!

  77. How wonderful, even when gracing the stones! Somehow reminds me of the old Arthur Rackham illustrations of fairies and such – it’s the perfect image of “gossamer”.

  78. It reminds me of a beautiful Luna moth. A Luna filigreed princess perhaps? Beautiful! Great pics!

  79. I just saw the pictures on Ravelry and my immediate response was…”It’s done! It’s done!” I had to hurry straight to your blog and read about it. You have made me laugh so many times. I’ve learned not to drink anything while reading your books or I end up choking. This time you and your work (writing, knitting, and photography) has left me speechless! Thanks for being the inspiration that you are.

  80. Absolutely beautiful but I don’t see me tackling anything like that soon! You did inspire me to try socks and the pair I made were also my first FOs. Thanks for the smiles and the encouragement. It makes a big difference for newcomer like me to realize someone as talented as yourself can have bad days as well as the great one shown in this picture

  81. Forgive me if this has been asked, but how do you get it to stay just on the edge of the rail, perfectly spread out, while you are taking the pictures without it sliding right off? I get that the wind got it, but even before that, I would have laid it out, watched it fall, laid it out, watched it fall, then folded it over the rail further, and lost the top third of the shawl from the shot. Lovely results, both shawl and picture!

  82. It’s a beautiful shawl, and I just can’t believe how quickly you finished. Only one thing would make the shawl better – if it were blue.

  83. Good thing I was not on the other side of that bridge, I would have beat you to the shawl when it landed on the bridge and run as fast as I could to my getaway vehicle!

  84. Beautiful shawl and beautiful pictures. I think the wind was Mother Nature’s way of trying to take your shawl as her own. After all it was done in ‘pondscum’ and it did look so at home on the stone bridge. I have avoided laceknitting, but may add this onto the queque as more hopeful now. You have now lured me out of lurking to posting with this one ๐Ÿ™‚

  85. Those photos just made me smile. And smile and smile and smile. What a special moment. You captured it perfectly. The series could be in an art gallery.
    Still smiling.

  86. you know how something can be so very beautiful that it brings you almost to tears? This gorgeous shawl and poetic photos are one of those somethings.

  87. Fabulous! It already looked like a beautiful, perfect product of nature, and this gave it the life of a blowing, curling, falling, existing leaf. That’s when you know you’ve made something wonderful – when it looks that good in nature.
    Well done!

  88. Lovely Laminaria. I am searching for the Laminaria pattern in Dutch. Haven’t found it yet. I want to make the Laminaria my 2011 project, as I cannot knit more than a few minutes per day…

  89. I had originally read this post at work on a very poor computer monitor. Thought the shawl had gone into the water… truly pondscum. Very relieved it didn’t.
    Lovely.

  90. Okay, I am not sure that you are going to take this the right way, but these photos makes it look as though a silk spinning spider wove her gossimer thread in the most beautiful of ways. This is truly lovely.

  91. I love your blog. It completely blows my mind how quickly you get projects done. You’re lace shawls are absolutely beautiful.

  92. absolutely beautiful!
    I bet that bridge just sighed when the shawl fell upon it’s shoulders.
    you inspire me to knit a shawl someday. thank you thank you!

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