The Grateful Crane by Joy Gerhardt

The Grateful Crane

May 2011
Lace ?
5 stitches and 7 rows = 1 inch
in lace Chart A repeat (gauge not critical)
US 6 - 4.0 mm
481 yards (440 m)
60” (152cm) wingspan, 23” (58cm) down center back (easily modified)
Flag of English English
This pattern is available for $7.00 USD
buy it now or visit pattern website

Thanks everyone who purchased this pattern during its first three months - together, we raised over $90 for Doctors Without Borders/MSF UK! (50% of all pattern sales)
29 Apr - My introductory donation of £20 blogged
19 May - First donation $27/£16.72 blogged
1 Aug - Second donation $33/£20.11 blogged

There is a Japanese folktale, Tsuru no Ongaeshi (The Grateful Crane), which tells the story of a poor man who finds an injured crane. He takes the crane in and nurses it back to health. The next day, a beautiful woman appears at his door, whom he takes as his wife. The woman weaves beautiful cloth for him to sell, under the condition that he never watch her while she is weaving.

One day, the man’s curiosity gets the better of him, and he looks into the weaving room - he sees the crane that he saved, weaving its own feathers into the beautiful cloth. When the crane sees that she is discovered, she flies away, leaving the man alone.

This shoulder shawl is inspired by that folktale - knit in delicate mohair yarn, one could easily imagine the finished product as being woven from downy feathers. It takes the form of wings, wrapping around your shoulders and folding at the neck for a collar effect.

You can drape this shawl over your shoulders to keep yourself warm on a cool evening, or wrap it around your neck in lieu of a scarf. Each feather motif flows to the next, and you can easily alter the number of repeats up or down for a differently sized shawl.

The lace pattern is charted only. There are also instructions for making a larger (or smaller) shawl by adjusting the number of repeats.