I’ve done a few mystery knit-alongs in the past but last year Ysolda took the mystery to a whole different level with Follow Your Arrow and it took ravelry by storm. So much so that she’s doing it all over again this year…
So what was so special about this MKAL? Well it’s an opportunity for knitters to take control over their FO (Finished Object) destiny. Five weekly clues with every clue giving the knitter the option of either A or B. So the outcome is a possible 32 different combinations. This means you will end up with a unique shawl that most likely nobody else will have when you factor in your yarn choice…unless a fellow knitter loves your FO so much that they make an identical one for themselves 🙂
My Follow Your Arrow Adventure
The design last year was lace based with some weekly clues more lacey than others. I’m a big fan of lace (and shawls lol) and I knew that was the way I’d go right from the start. When the clues are released there is a temptation to wait for a spoiler picture of each option on the ravelry thread. Some people like to visualise things before they choose. And that’s completely okay. But for me I like the mystery. I’m a little OCD at times too so after I picked Clue 1b I knew I’d probably go Bs all the way. I particularly loved the clue with the short-row shaping as it turned my shawl from a semi-circular shape into a gentle curve to one side. This is what I loved the most from participating, the surprise of the shape you got and how it changed after each clue.
This is my BBBBB shawl (above) and it’s been regularly worn since. The yarn is Hedgehog Fibres Sock in colour ‘Merlot’ and I used a skein and a half. So it was a bit of a splurge but I think the tones from this semi-solid yarn really showcases the pattern well. You can find out more on my Ravelry project page here.
What About Everyone Else?
Well when I checked on ravelry this week the count of finished Follow Your Arrow shawls was over the 2,000 mark. I know that’s an awful lot of shawls!! I had a look through some of the FO pictures and there are some amazing knitters out there. A few knitters very kindly gave me permission to show off their finished shawl in my blog post. So in no particular order…drum roll please…
First up we have Mel from Australia (AKA Coalvalleyview on Ravelry) and she used Sweet Georgia Yarns Sock Superwash Sock in Slate and Ella Rae Lace Merino in Green. Mel knit a ABAAA shawl. I think the slate and green yarn are stunning! Mel’s project page is available here.
Mel says, “I love how it turned out and I’m especially happy with my colour choices and the way the stripes complement the lace”.
Sam from Chicago (AKA mercourier on Ravelry) made ‘Some Badass Arrows’ using the wool dispensary deadly restorative yarn in badass unicorn and sleepy hollow. Sam made a ABBAB shawl. You can see her project page here.
Marianne from Greenville, North Carolina (AKA mariannem on Ravelry) used Wollmeise Lace-Garn in Madame Souris to make her ABAAB shawl. Her project page is here. The lace-weight yarn really emphasis the lace clues.
Next we have Geraldine from France (AKA genepi on Ravelry). Geraldine used one of my favourite yarns…MadelineTosh Merino Light in a fabulous shade of yellow gold; and she made the same shawl as me! All B’s. You can read more about Geraline’s project on her blog here. Her ravelry project page is here.
Ena from Iowa (AKA beartifix on ravelry) made a fabulous rainbow version using Kauni yarn (I have some of that in my stash). I love how the colour changes in the yarn blended seamlessly through each clue as the shawl formed it’s final shape. You can see Ena’s ravelry project page here
And last but definitely not least is this stunning creation by iMacKrafty from Saudi Arabia. She created a ‘Chakra Arrow For Katee’ using Knit Picks Palette in silver for the main colour and a variety of rainbow colours for the stripes. I particular love how the stripes in the first clue turned out. You can see her project page here.
You can see this truly has been an international event and I’m sure you will agree that these knitters have done a stunning job with their shawls. Its amazing how one pattern can have so many wonderful variations.
So what next…
The Follow Your Arrow MKAL 2 is open for sign up here and the first clue is due for release on Monday 19th January. You will need 550 yards of fingering weight yarn and this time round the design is more focused on textured stitches than lace; and Ysolda says “…the overall shapes aren’t weird and won’t form an arrow pointing at your arse” 🙂
So who’s with me? If your joining in again this time round or perhaps this is your first follow your arrow adventure I’d love to hear about your yarn choices. I’m still debating mine and I’ll post again this weekend when I’ve made up my mind.
Acknowledgement: A big thank you to Ysolda for very kindly letting me use her Follow Your Arrow 2 image AND to the individual knitters for letting me share they’re projects. It’s much appreciated!