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Designer Spotlight: Sea Song by Sara Kay Hartmann

In a family where “hardly anyone is crafty,” Sara Kay Hartmann is the exception. She taught herself to knit and crochet in 2008 by watching videos online. Just last year, she released her first book, Poetic Crochet: 20 Shawls inspired by Classic Poems.

Sea Song is a colorful and cozy Möbius loop crocheted in four shades of Berroco Andean Mist. The shawl is worked flat in wavy stripes, created by gradually increasing and decreasing stitches from chains to treble crochets.

Is there any story behind the name?

Rainer Maria Rilke’s “Song of the Sea” is the poem behind this design from Poetic Crochet. I loved using the oceanic, beachy colors of Andean Mist to accentuate the pattern that reminded me of rolling waves and the sea breezes the speaker mentions:

“Timeless sea breezes, that for aeons have blown…”

How did you decide on the yarn?

When I was designing this wrap, my original yarn choice was a lace weight mohair yarn in fuchsia, lime green, olive green and hunter green. When the yarn was delivered, I had some doubts about how the colors would work together, but I faithfully stitched up the sample, believing that somehow it would look good when it was done. In this case, my faith was not rewarded. I hated the finished product so much, I decided I couldn’t let it go into the book as it was. Naturally my manuscript deadline was looming and I had saved this design for last so I was in something of a panic, but I just had to fix this shawl. After calming down a little, I realized that it was not a design problem. It was a yarn problem. I went to my LYS where I discovered Berroco Andean Mist in the gorgeous colorways of Fitz Roy, Misti, Lascar, and Nieve. The larger gauge was nice to work with, stitched up quickly, and the soft halo effect worked perfectly to create a wrap incredibly soft, light, and warm with the perfect amount of volume.

Any funny stories?

I am actually allergic to alpaca yarn (and cats). I get hay fever, headache, upset stomach, and swollen mouth and nasal passages. Even so, I loved this yarn. Totally worth it!

What’s your favorite thing about knitting/crochet?

My favorite thing about knitting and crocheting is the creative journey of making something from “nothing.” A ball of yarn is something, but it is a chaotic something full of infinite potential. I love that by organizing that chaos of string into an expression of stitches in tidy rows, we create something beautiful, useful and coherent out of what was formerly a humble length of tangled string. That’s another reason that designing is so exciting to me. Creating a design and a pattern is like applying my imagination to finding my creative solution to the “problem” of a ball yarn. Offering the pattern is like sharing the road map to take the same journey I just took. It’s a delight to take my journey and to be the pioneer, hoping others will enjoy following the trail of that particular project.

Do you have a cool design you want to share? Or did you recently finish a project with Berroco yarn? You can email Ashley: or post it to the Berroco Lovers forum in Ravelry.

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