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A little under a decade ago, shortly after rediscovering knitting, I bought a kit to knit Hanne Falkenberg’s Promenade.

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Promenade is a beautiful garter-stitch wrap, which comes in several glorious shades of Shetland wool. The wrap’s colour combinations are intriguing (and inspiring). It is a simple but nifty design, and I greatly admired it (as I did – and indeed still do admire – many of Hanne Falkenberg’s other patterns). I knit a little of the back portion, and then set the wrap aside to work on other projects.

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Around this time, I was suddenly gripped by knitting’s vast potential. I wanted to learn about different techniques, about colourwork and lace. I read Elizabeth Zimmermann and Mary Thomas. I knit up different technical swatches. I wanted to create things for myself. I began to experiment making up my own scarves and hats, and later, my own jumpers. Though I read other people’s patterns carefully as I learned about technique, I knit from them increasingly rarely. Promenade languished unfinished in a bag in my yarn stash.

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I often looked at Promenade regretfully. I really wanted to make and wear it, but, as I began to design things for myself, it was never a priority.

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A short while ago, my friend Mel spotted Promenade in its bag and took it away. It came back, finished, as my birthday present. It is completely beautiful and I love it!

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Thanks so much, Mel! x

You can find more information about Promenade here.

47 thoughts on “Promenade

  1. This post made me laugh so much … I too bought a promenade many years ago, started it and it languished for years unfinished and unloved. Eventually I did finish it but cant say it was a labour of love. I admire the cleverness of the construction and love the finished item but, my god, so much endless garter stitch. Glad to see I’m not alone in my love/hate relationship with this knit – I wonder how many more are languishing unfinished around the world?! Anyway your now looks wonderful.

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  2. The perfect present! (And you chose excellent kit colors, too). I hope you celebrated your birthday to the hilt!

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  3. Beautiful, and what a lovely shout-out to another designer! As a long-time fan of Hanne Falkenberg, it thrills me to see one of my favourites among her designs knitted up and photographed so beautifully.
    I’ve made two Promenade shawls myself; one in No. 7 (Poppy Red, Tomato, Fuchsia, Cyclamen, and Orange), and one I put together myself, using leftovers from my (too) many other Hanne Falkenberg projects: Cyclamen, Fuchsia, Wine Red, Plum, and Poppy Red.

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  4. That is a BEAUTIFUL wrap, I said ‘awww’ out loud at the end of this post! Mel is amazing, what a birthday pressie!

    Inspired me to pull out a kit I have had in storage for years, maybe at some point in any case !

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  5. I was fortunate enough to see Mel working on this shawl/wrap while we were on a knitting retreat in Caithness at the end of May. even at the halfway stage it looked amazing; finished, it is absolutely gorgeous. Mel is a beautiful knitter (and a knitter who is beautiful!).

    may it keep you warm, cosy and wrapped in love.

    belated Birthday wishes.

    Ella (giffnockgirl)

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  6. Happy Birthday Kate. And thanks for reminding me of Hanne–I am intrigued by her designs as I am with yours. I think that we are all wishing that we had a friend like Mel Kudos to her!!

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  7. Who thought Garter stitch could look so scrumptious? Those colors are just awesome. I sense tomorrow will be all about kids-I can’t wait to see the new publication.

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  8. Happt birthday, Kate! And…yes, what a wonderful gift that is. Love the wrap, and love how well you described being knit by the knitting bug: “gripped by knitting’s vast potential.”

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  9. Kate, I fully understand what you are saying. Here’s my take:

    1. A blessing to have Mel as your friend in so many ways. Cherish her always.
    2. Hanna Falkenberg does in fact have great patterns and each one of her patterns can teach even us more experienced knitters a thing or 2. We never stop learning.
    3. All that said, I would never have guessed you for a Kit person. Why? You are amongst the group of folks who setting knitting standards today! :)
    4. The other thing about a kit is that a kit comes defined. I tend to takes lefts and rights when I knit so what was supposed to be say: blue for 2″ didn’t happen because I had another color or stitch feeling and the next thing you know, I don’t even have any more blue left. lol

    But just in case Mel wants to start knitting the same pattern again, I can ship her some yarn. No prob. OK, let’s start fresh next week. :)

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  10. Happy Birthday and what a treat you got!! The colours are excellent…you have always had good taste!
    Yes, we ‘heart’ MEL!!

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  11. What a wonderful friend! And a beautiful job she has made of such a beautiful pattern. I’d love a Mel in my life! Happy Birthday.

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  12. What a celebration of friendship, birthday, and simple works of great beauty. You and Mel are inspiring! I need to find this kit and knit one of these.

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  13. Happy Birthday (though at bit tardy), but with ever Best Wishes!!! I love the Wrap and the colours look great on you! Mel is a Absolutely Awesome Friend Indeed ! I must agree with he masses. I had never really given any thought to Knitting another’s creation when you have a vast and creative mind in the same area. After thinking on it a bit, I sure couldn’t do it(not that that is saying anything). I realized that I would keep considering how to change it here or there. Mel solved the whole thing and I will keep in mind her tactics for friend of mine who have a bit of “Overflow”! Thanks so much for sharing a bit of your life with us. There are times when the world seem to big and visiting with you makes it feel a bit smaller! Happy, Happy for the Year to Come!!!

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  14. It is lovely.
    I wish one of my knitting friends would come and finish some of my ufo’s! Mel, if you are ever in the U.S., look me up :)

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  15. Stunning colours in a beautifully simple presentation (and just as beautifully knitted)! And I find myself in the same position—meaning to knit other people’s lovely designs, but rarely getting around to doing it. I’m inspired to make doing this a priority.

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  16. Wow! Happy Birthday to you. Gorgeous gift straight from Mel’s generous heart to you. Wear in the best of health. May you be enveloped by her love whenever you wear this…

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  17. There is great pleasure to be had from the rediscovery of old visions, for it seems to me that is what every hand-made item is – an idea that can either unfold happily, disappointingly, quickly or slowly. Lovely to see that your sleeping vision was brought back to life by a good friend.

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  18. HURRAH FOR MEL!

    I love this post and completely relate to your sentiments about how – once you are captivated by the bug to learn and design – it is harder to complete knitting projects by other designers to enjoy and wear as garments. There are only so many knitting hours in the day, and I think thousands of knitters love and appreciate that you spend most of yours creating wondrous, beautiful and ingenious Kate Davies Designs!

    However you must miss the pleasure of knitting other people’s patterns to wear and I love that Mel noticed this and completed your wrap for you so that you could recall this sensation. It is utterly YOU and looks brilliant + turboamazeballs.

    WE HEART MEL XXX

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  19. There so many things to say about this post.
    1 – Isn’t it wonderful that garter stitch can look so good?
    2 – This shawl is a wonderful example of how ‘off-trend’ beautiful hand made items can be, and are all the better for it. There can’t be many things that you can return to after a 10 year gap and love them as much as you did when you bought them
    3 – Yes, I feel I should probably prioritise patterns from designers other than Kate. But I rarely do.
    4 – Yay for the 10 year old stash. Quite embryonic by some standards.

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