Years ago, on a cold winter's night, I looked at a sale of 100% cashmere yarn. It was Mongolian cashmere offered at a unbelievable half off price. (BTW, many of my knitting stories start that way.)
The yarn came in many colors and the chore to narrow it done to just a few was really difficult.
After some time, I finally decided to just "Act like I was designing with a specific theme for a magazine" in mind, and Et Voila, the yarn color spoke "We belong together", loudly!
Once the yarn arrived I was was overjoyed. The colors were so true to their on-line images, which is not always the case.
Now the yarn needed to be wound and cashmere in hand is an amazing experience. If you have never felt it, go try it. After that the yarn just waited. It even disappeared back in the box with a rubber band around it for at least a year.
It is winter again. In San Diego this means sunshine until that first cold day, from then on it is cold. There is no Autumn Season. I had completed my Christmas projects of one knitted hat for each of my Nieces and Nephews. A period of me-time was ahead. I remembered the cashmere and pulled it out from the box. I first expanded on the mood board because I needed to define this project more. It needed shape and form.
OK, I thought: I can do this! It looked to me like there is going to be a sweater/coat made from this yarn, with a southwestern look. To stay authentic to that Theme I made sure the collar of this garment will have the shape as the coats that a saw researching the southwestern theme.
It was time to create this new coat closely adhering to the original Theme. Stripes, triangles, shawl collar, long, pockets, but basic. Because I had purchased the yarn years ago, I had one special constraint: the colors needed to be balanced such that I did not run out of yarn!!!
Don't go yet, the story has an even greater ending.To my surprise, there was an actual call for submissions to a publication called Nomadic Knits. It is a newer kind of knitting pattern print book and e-book publication. For the 3rd issue the theme was Arizona/New Mexico.
I had the idea to just take my design and make it into a ruana. The idea was accepted and now, this April 22, 2019 the book is released. You can make this ruana. The yarn for the pattern is from Arizona, just as colorful, and even contains some cashmere.
The book or e-book can be purchased here:
The yarn already prepared as a kit for 2 sizes can be purchased here: