Woman In All The Blues and the second set of PAL prompts

Faith Makawa - a Black model with locs - wears a fedora hat, a white blouse dress and blue eye makeup, that picks up the blue shades in the scarf - Woman In All The Blues - that she wears draped around her shouldersr; she lightly rests her hand against a microphone stand, as if resting between songs

Woman In All The Blues was released today through Ravelry – the second pattern from the Yarnadelic Remixes 0.1 eBook. This beautiful and evocative design by Muriel Pensivy is a thick and cosy scarf. It combines three techniques – marling, slipped-stitches and Lucy Neatby’s Big Lace Holes – to produce a fully reversible scarf which looks like a componium punch-card when laid out flat.

Woman In All The Blues scarf, laid out end to end, showing the punch-card shapes and the slip-stitch and garter stitch reversible grid; the scarf is made in sections of different shades of blue

Here is a componium punch-card. When played through a componium (music box), the notes you hear are the same ones played by Judy Roderick in her 1960 recording of the song, Woman Blue.

componium punch-card, showing the same pattern of notes and pitches as those featured on Muriel's scarf

The CD booklet for Woman Blue by Judy Roderick; Judy's face appears to the right of the booklet (the cover) she wears blue and faces into the middle distance with a traffic light behind her; the light is blue. On the left we see the back of the liner notes booklet that accompanies the CD re-release of her 1960s album

You can knit this scarf in blues – just like the original – or make up your own colour scheme. If you’ve never knit Big Lace Holes before, the swatching instructions included in the pattern are a great introduction to the technique and will show you everything you need to know. Swatching for this project is also a fantastic opportunity to explore different ways of creating an ombre effect through marling, when you knit this scarf.

Four different colourway swatches for the Woman In All The Blues scarf; clockwise from top left: green, purples, reds, and blues

The Woman In All The Blues scarf hanging in front of open glass doors, with the evening light pouring through

To speak to the release of this design, we have a brand new set of prompts for our Play-a-long. They speak to the Blues with which the scarf is knit; the Blues that are the origin of the song, Woman Blue; the concept of song covers; the related idea of knitted projects that are “covers” of the designer’s original “song”; and the question of provenance (both of wool, and of music).

These are the themes that we explored when working on the playlist that accompanies this design, and we would love to invite you to explore them in your own way over the coming days.

WOMAN IN ALL THE BLUES (7 - 12 NOVEMBER)
7. 	FAVOURITE BLUES (KNIT)
8. 	FAVOURITE BLUES (SOUND)
9. 	COVER VERSION (KNIT)
10. 	COVER VERSION (SOUND)
11. 	PROVENANCE OF A YARN
12.	PROVENANCE OF A SONG

If you haven’t already seen it, please do also check out the artwork Woman Blue – Elevate produced by artist Lorna Hamilton-Brown, MBE, RCA and commissioned as part of the Yarnadelic Remixes 0.1 project. This artwork explores the origins of the song and elevates the memory of the unnamed young Black girl, in prison for murder, who is the first cited source of this song.

Woman Blue - Elevate by Lorna Hamilton-Brown, RCA MBE

There is also a playlist that digs into these themes, which I put together on Mixcloud and that you can hear here.

Yours in BLUES,
Until soon –
Fx

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