Or: sheep + flowers = happiness.
We became shepherds a few years ago because 1. sheep are fuzzy and cute and look adorable dotted across our hillside; and 2. because I really wanted to grow my own fiber for knitting.
It was a long and varied road that led to those first skeins of wool but we made it – and each stitch I make with homegrown yarn is more satisfying than I ever could have imagined.
I planted black hollyhocks in my flower garden so that I could have a wider color palate of natural dyes. As a biennial (flowering only on the second year) even my dye plants were a long-game plan.
Finally this spring I dyed my first skein of hollyhock wool (the bottom skein in the photo above) and it was true love. A complex sage with an undercurrent of blue, it's mellowed to a soft sage green in the months since I dyed it.
And it is, quite possibly, my favorite yarn ever. Because squishy, gorgeous, and homegrown in every way? Yes, please!
Despite my yarn being worsted weight, I chose to knit a Guernsey Triangle after being utterly distracted by my friend Meg's gorgeous version during a visit this spring as we discussed homeschooling, lambs in tutus, and doing yoga with goats. (Among other things.)
Yes, the Guernsey Triangle is designed for fingering weight yarn. Yes, I knitted it in worsted. Rules be damned!
To accommodate for the extra bulk of my yarn I simply cast on the small version with the expectation of it coming out roughly the size of a large. (It did.)
Next up? A cowl with fiber from this cute bunny.
Photos by the ever-helpful Sage. Thank's, bud.
P.S. My project notes are here!
9 thoughts on “Homegrown hollyhock shawl”
The hollyhock is outstanding! Beautiful shawl – looks useful, too. I am attempting an indigo vat next month – fingers crossed…
It’s beautiful. I love that the shawl is homegrown. I feel so inspired.
~ hi Rachel,
OH, my fiber-knitting-bunny goodness !!!
I LOVE the 2nd image of you & Miss Angora Rabbit, … best ever.
The hollyhock shawl is sooooo beautiful. LOVeee the dye color & what a fantastic pattern.
* sheep + flowers = happiness * …. sounds like a perfect book title to me !!
Sage: terrific photos.
Thanks for making my day stellar with this post !!!
Your shawl is so beautiful, and it’s even better because the yarn came from your own sheep. That’s just so amazing.
I’m also attempting an indigo vat this autumn! Here’s to great results for us both. x
Ha! Yes indeed. Here’s to yummy fiber and even yummier fiber animals!
Many thanks, Emily!
That’s a really beautiful shawl.