The Bean Nighe Shawl by Nat Raedwulf
Merry Samhain, also known as Halloween or the Witches New Year.
The veils are thin and it's time to share my latest release, the Bean Nighe Shawl
Bean Nighe is an enveloping, hauntingly beautiful, top-down crescent-shaped shawl with an i-cord edge and picot border. The textured body stitches interchange with lace sections, making it both an interesting and easy-going knit with memorable stitch combinations. Its generous size allows it to be draped around one in many different ways.
This design was born of a time when I found myself unable to communicate or even fully realize the grief I was experiencing. Through my search for a way to express myself, I found kinship in the folklore of the Bean Nighe (ben- neeya), the Scottish phantom prophetess, who would sing of grief and misfortune. To encounter a Bean Nighe was said to be terrifying; however, she is known to grant wishes and her protection to those who gain her favour. The Bean Nighe (like her Irish cousin the Banshee) is often described as wearing or holding the burial shrouds of those who are about to perish.
Ready for a raw, vulnerable post with some swearing? So as many of you are aware, I was in a car accident (actually two) and suffered various injuries. My counsellor encouraged me to journal about my grief and frustration with having my physical and cognitive abilities affected but writing is not for me.
The design alludes to the burial shrouds that the Banshee and the Bean Nighe are said to wear and is a symbolic declaration of the grief and pain I've endured through this process. It's probably the most personal piece I've made to date. It's also a symbolic burial of my old way of experiencing the world as I learn how to operate the way I am now.
Thank you for reading this far... it's hard to share the grittier dirty parts of one's world at times. Have you ever used your fibre arts to process hard or negative emotions?
I want to thank my Husband Ron Pogue, my family and counsellors for the support you have given me through this process, my test knitters and tech editor for helping this piece come to life and all the wonderful knitters and fibre artists that reach out and connect with me through our love of all things wool!
Happy Halloween, Merry Sahmain!
Please find the Bean Nighe Ravelry page for the pattern here
Please find the Bean Nighe pattern page on this website here
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I have felt a compelling connection with this pattern since you first shared glimpses of it. Even more so now that you share its inspiration and symbolism. The veil is thin, indeed.