For a long time, I resisted shawls as a knitting project option. Other knitters were working away at them, sometimes quite a lot of them. I saw the patterns on Ravelry and in the magazines, and sometimes would even stop to look longingly at them before deciding to pass.
More recently, I have grown to embrace shawldom in many of its forms, and now see them as a good way to try out new techniques and/or work with extravagant yarns that I could not afford to make into a sweater or skirt or something more substantial. But before that realization, I had two reasons to not knit any shawls.
- Where would I wear a shawl? Maybe if my job was as a historical interpreter at Colonial Williamsburg, or if I had a hobby of going along to Civil War re-enactment camps and being a butter churner or something. Then I’d have a place to wear a shawl. Otherwise, no. Now, of course, that excuse is gone. Shawls are something of a thing. Perhaps not a full-blown thing, but I do see enough people wearing them that it seems somewhat normal-ish.And to everyone who says “Who cares what others are wearing? Be a free spirit! Wear what you love!” – I tried that one year. I wore hats. Not everyplace, but most places. And you know what? I was the crazy hat lady. There were many super-awkward conversations where the person was clearly trying to find out what was up with the hats without actually mentioning the hats. Enough of them that I know I don’t want to be a free spirit, sartorially speaking.
- I have no idea how to wear a shawl attractively. None at all. I have looked online at all the guides. I have had stylish people try to explain it to me. Nope. In general when I wear a shawl or scarf, I look like I tried unsuccessfully to hang myself, then just gave up and came to work anyway. Now, as I mentioned, I do now actually knit shawls and scarves. Which means wearing them, because I’m darned if I’m going to make the effort to knit a Fox Paws and then not show it off. By dint of some trial and error, I have come up with some ways to wear shawls, but those ways are not stylish ways. Observe!
The “I Have Given Up”. Sometimes the broad part slips down my arm until it looks like a really elaborate sling.
The “Get Me To a Nunnery” I only do this one when I am cold at work.
The “Da Comrade”
The “Devil May Care”, or with a longer scarf “The Aviatrix” My go-to method with scarves. Because I can’t think of anything better.
The “I Have Given Up – Scarf Edition” This one happens after I tried the Devil May care, but either the scarf or my outfit (or both!) is made of slippery fibers, and the over-the-shoulder part has fallen down so many times I just cannot make myself care anymore.
So there are my neck accessory wearing styles. Someday I may be able to actually wear these things like a stylish person. But that day is not today. And probably not anytime soon. So if you have any tips, send them my way!