Last week I took a short trip to help a couple that is dear to me celebrate a big wedding anniversary. They live in France, so we met in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. I joined them for the last few days of their two weeks on the French-speaking side of the West Indies island of St. Martin.
This may not have been a classically romantic way to celebrate a wedding anniversary, but over more than four decades of friendship, and especially the last 10 years or so, I have taken so many trips with MJ and Michel that they probably don’t feel quite right without me tagging along—or that’s what I tell myself. Hey guys, wait up! Let’s take a picture together! Would it kill you to hold my hand?
I’d never been to St. Martin, but my spidey sense told me that the knitting for this getaway should be as uncomplicated as possible. No pattern. No markers. No counting. Just a little linen bundle to tote with me to the beach and back. Knitting you can fall asleep to without messing anything up.
Something like this
Ding ding ding! Perfect travel project.
I had started out using leftovers from my first Swarf in the Kay colorway: blues and grays and a deep red. My rule was to knit a 2-color marl until one of the colors ran out, and then pick up another color to marl with the remaining strand, and on and on.
I tried to mooch Tynd scraps and leftovers from other people’s Swarfs (Swarves?) but struck out there (despite offering a Breads Bakery babka in exchange for Tynd bits), so I resorted to full skeins. To keep the vibe scrappy, I didn’t coordinate or plan colors; I just asked Allison to send me a few shades of her choosing. With the Tynd palette, there are no bad matchups.
Here’s how my Swarf scarf looked before taking its soak in the Soak.
Before blocking: bumpy
I love the crinkly ridges of Cecelia Campochiaro’s alternating bands of stockinette and reverse stockinette. I changed it up by varying the length of each section, making some of the blocks very blocky indeed, at 14 or 16 rows, and some of them much ridgier, going down to sections that had just 6 rows before switching the pattern.
I had blocked my Swarf, so I knew that Tynd, ultra-soft and drapey to begin with, would relax fully and lengthen substantially. And it did.
After blocking: smooth
The length of my Swarf scarf went from 70 inches before blocking, to 81 inches afterward.
It’s so freaking soft. They aren’t kidding when they say people mistake Tynd for cashmere. I cannot tell the difference, that’s for sure.
Isn’t it lovely?
My rating: 10 out of 10, will definitely knit again. I particularly long to make a summer version using Sylph. I love a summer scarf!
Hmmmm. I happen to have a couple of skeins of Sylph in the stash Does anybody want a Breads Bakery babka? I’ll trade you for Sylph scraps!