Ella from Jamieson & Smith has done a lovely job of explaining what a hap is in a recent blog post which can be found here. It's a lovely write-up, and she has included lots of great pictures. (The very short, and not completely correct definition is a hap is a kind of shawl originally made and worn in Shetland.)
I knew I wanted my hap to reflect the colours of Shetland in some way, and I also knew I wanted to knit the hap from my stash yarn. When I was in Shetland I had purchased a kit to knit a sweater by Kate Davies, but two years later the balls of yarn were still sitting untouched, so I decided the yarn should be a hap instead. Kate had already done the hard work of choosing colours that reflected the natural beauty of Shetland, so all I had to do was narrow down which of the colours in the kit to use. To begin with, I went back to my trip photos and picked several from Burrastow House, the amazing B&B where Kath and Jean and I stayed.
Then I used this neat trick I learned on the Knit British forum for choosing your colours. You simply try combinations by wrapping the yarn around a piece of cardboard until you find one you like.
There was also the dilemma of which hap pattern to choose. In the end I decided on the Half Hansel Hap by Gudrun Johnston. It was being knit by many others in the Knit British Hapalong, and I really liked the look of it. But better yet, Gudrun has a Craftsy class where she takes you step by step through the process of knitting it. Between the encouragement on Ravelry and the excellent teaching by Gudrun, I actually managed to successfully knit the hap. Introducing Burrastow, the latest project off my needles.
Thanks to my knitting neighbour Lynda who kindly volunteered to take pictures, here's one of me with my new hap.
I loved everything about this project from start to finish, and was actually sad when I cast off. Usually by the time I finish something I'm ready to move on, but not this time. I'll definitely be making another one at some point.
*If you're interested in joining the hapalong there's still lots of time. It's open until July 12.