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Grandfather Mountain

A month or so ago, while visiting my local yarn shop, my eyes lit on a multi-colored braid of velvety soft alpaca yarn.  To me, the heathery tones plaited together evoked the verdant landscape and blue lochs of Scotland, while the lone brown hank added an earthy richness to this combination.Soon a shawl inspired by Shetland haps came to mind.The Old Shale edging is a traditional hap feature, but my shawl features a circular cast on for the center back, a beginning which is a twist on the classic diagonal or end-to-end knitting of the hap center square.

I named the shawl Grandfather Mountain, because, while this locale may not have a direct connection to Shetland, the western Appalachian mountains are deeply influenced by Scottish culture and tradition. Tens of thousands of Scottish immigrants made their way to this area during the 17th through 19th centuries. 

In the 1880s, there was also a scheme thought up by Scottish Americans living in the Sandhills region of North Carolina to intro…

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