A Trip to the Seaside: Shells, Fossils, and Waves
This week, Angie reminisces about a trip to the seaside and how it inspired her to become more interested in stitches and patterns.
Last August, I took a trip to the seaside for my birthday. I went to Walton on the Naze in Essex, on the east coast of England. This town thrives on the British migration to the sea in the summer, with a beautiful beach that goes on for miles and a marshy wetland area that’s thriving under wildlife protection.
This area was important during both World War I and World War II, with military pillboxes that were used as anti-invasion tactics still present on the beach. The nearby Naze Tower was used at the advent of radar technology, and still stands today – although you’re more likely to find ice cream than radar equipment now.
Above: a view into a military pillbox, hidden by algae and seaweed
The cliffs in this area are subject to extensive erosion, with 2 meters of land lost into the sea each year. The area has become a hotspot for geologists, wildlife conservationists, and biologists, who all work together to try and preserve this unique and beautiful area.
The beach is a wonderful place to hunt for souvenir shells; I even met a woman who had dug up several shark teeth in her search for fossils.
Above: cliffs in Walton on the Naze
It’s been 10 months since that trip, and I still think about hiking around the marsh and walking along the miles and miles of quiet beach landscape. I was looking through some things from last summer, and I found the shells I collected on the beach. I asked myself, ”How can I crochet something that would memorialize this trip?” I was inspired by the colors and shapes of the shells most of all, and I wanted to create something, even if it’s something I’ll decide to give away as a gift.
I began by looking through the LoveCrochet pattern library, and I found the Seaside shawl by Anna Nikipriowicz, which consists of several motifs which are later joined together to create a shawl.
Above: Seaside shawl. Click on this image to purchase the pattern!
I love the scalloped edging and the way that the colors look like the ebb and flow of a seaside tide. I’m also inspired by how the designer chose Rowan Kidsilk Haze, opening up crocheters to new fibers that we might not have thought about using before. I love how the subtle mohair halo works with the design, instead of against it.
You’ll need one ball each of shades Tornado, Alhambra, Atlantic, and Heavenly, as seen below.
I probably won’t go back to Walton on the Naze this summer, because even though I loved it there, the world is full of beautiful places that are just begging to be discovered.