Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Introducing: Rosetta Tharpe

I'd like to introduce to you to Rosetta Tharpe.

Ms. Tharpe is not well known, but those who do know her call her the Godmother of Rock & Roll. Born in 1915, she was a gospel performer of great sophistication and skill, but also had rather a way with a guitar.

You can read more about her here.

This shawl is like Ms. Tharpe – classic in origin and inspiration, drawing on simple elements, but coming together in way that’s both elegant and bad-ass at the same time.

It’s based on the Pi shaping: starts at the center with nine stitches, with an increase round to double the stitch count every so often. The edging stitch pattern is flexible: work until you’ve run out of yarn, or the shawl is the size you want, or you just can’t take it anymore and want to wear the thing.

The project requires only basic lace knitting skills, and being worked in the round, there’s none (well, ok, very little) of that pesky purling. The only tricky bit is the start: you begin with a small round, but that’s over quickly.

I used indigodragonfly's amazing Uber MerGoat Sport merino/cashmere/nylon blend for any easy-care, weighty piece that knits up faster (and more spectacularly) than laceweight; and the weight of the yarn gives wonderful drape to the piece. The colorway is "Cumberbacchanal. Of course.

The pattern is available on Ravelry now, and as of Saturday, Kim will be making kits available starting 11am, Saturday August 16th. Order here! There will be two choices of yarn - the Uber MerGoat Sport, if you've got a bit of money saved up, and a more budget-friendly option, SuperBaa DK.

We'll also be hosting a Knit-Along in Kim's Ravelry group.

Never made a Pi shawl? This pattern is a great place to start.

Wear Ms. Tharpe folded over your shoulders like a triangle,

...or fully open for more drama and coverage. The fabric is weighty enough and the piece big enough that it stays very nicely in place.

A million thanks to Gillian Martin for her amazing photography.


Kelli said...

Absolutely beautiful!

Maryjean said...

Seriously gorgeous! I love the shawl and the colourway. (Do you think it's something I could attempt?) Also, the glasses are equally as stunning.

Maxine said...

The shawl is exquisite. I grew up listening to Rosetta Tharpe's music. I'm sure she'd be thrilled beyond words to know that you named your shawl in her honor.

Jane G said...

do you think Stevie Nicks would be interested??

May said...

Beautiful shawl and the pattern release coincides with a PBS show on Rosetta Tharpe. I'm not familiar with her music but will try to watch and learn.