Sunday, August 31, 2008

Doorway to Release the Soul

I finished Aunties' shawl yesterday, tucking in the last of the tails and letting the children parade around the house to model it for Mr. Dee.  Since it was raining yesterday I had to wait until today to block it.

Shawl for Auntie; pattern by Doris ChanSince I do not have a large house with a spare bed, or spare flooring for that matter, blocking for me is an outdoor activity.  After a search for my blocking tarp was fruitless, I went to Game Plan B and decided to hang it on the clothesline.  (It turns out my father borrowed my tarp to keep my china cabinet nice while he's storing it.  Note to self: buy another quality tarp.)

Oops!! Can you see the error too?I soaked the shawl in the SOAK detergent and gently squished out the excess water.  I hung the shawl on the line and stood back to admire my work.  Was I seeing things?  I stood there and starred at my stitches.  I must have been standing there for awhile because Mr. Dee came running up to me, "What's wrong?" he demanded to know.

I laughed, pointing to my work.  "It looks like I left a doorway to release my soul* from my work," I replied.  (* there is an Indian tribe that believes if hand work is perfect it traps the soul of that individual.  If I can recall the name of the tribe, I'll post it here.)

"Ha!  That's a true sign that it was made by hand," he remarked, "and I would have never have noticed if you never have pointed it out!"

He's right, it's not a big error, and it is a sign that the work was made by hand.  Of course this also teaches me to go back to using my OTT lite when crocheting into the late evening hours.  :)

Project info:
Pattern by Doris Chan ... "AllShawl;" available on Ravelry
Yarn: six skeins of Simply Soft Shadows and a wee bit over two skeins of Berroco's comfort
Hook:  2008 CGOA Commemorative crochet hook by


Anonymous said...

Dee you did a great job on the shawl, I just bought the yarn to do this shawl too. Sherri

Anonymous said...

Huh. I'd never heard about the 'doorway to release the soul' thing. It sounds more lyrical than the way the Finns label this sort of thing.

Weaving on a loom is a major art form in Finland, with many small apartments crammed with full sized looms. The word for 'loom' in finnish translates as 'tree' in english. When a small mistake (often intentional) is left in a piece, it is called the 'puumerkki' or 'tree mark' or how we would more commonly say it in english: 'mark of the loom.' This is how you know it is hand made. And that term has translated to all sorts of crafts. When you make a little boo boo that doesn't affect the utility of the object being made, you have left a puumerkki, and so people will know it is handmade. It is considered a mark of quality.

Anonymous said...

That is a beautiful piece of work.  I have heard this stories about handmade work.  Navajo weavers always leave a trail out of their work for the weavers spirit to travel out so it does not get trapped.  I have also heard that Persian rug weavers would also make a purposeful mistake in a pattern because they believe that only Alah is perfect.  Amish quilts always have a humility square (error) for this same purpose.