Expat in Korea · My Makes

Tweedy poncho is finished! + Seollal, Year of the tiger

Welcome to a new Lunar New Year, a new month, and to my finally-finished Tweedy Poncho! I so enjoyed this poncho project and look forward to wearing it, especially since it uses one of my favorite yarns – Rowan Felted Tweed. The poncho is from a pattern in Issue 141 of Inside Crochet magazine.

The beginning was a little rough going, since I began by stitching in US, not UK terms (the pattern didn’t specify, but it is a UK publication, so…). Luckily I quickly realized my mistake and started again. For those interested in trying this pattern, I do recommend it, although I found three small mistakes, one of which was an incorrect stitch name in one row of the yoke. Another mistake indicated the incorrect color in a row. The mistakes are easy to spot if one skims the pattern in advance. The math/stitch count is fine, so I wasn’t slowed down too much.

The poncho has a generous turtleneck made with front-post stitches that create a rib effect; the colorwork is done with repeating shells, and the textured overlay is made in rows in between the rows of shells. The body of the poncho has rows of double crochet (UK = treble crochet), with every fourth row done in a crossover “X” pattern. The bottom has two rows of a simple front- and back-post ribbing, done with double (UK = treble) stitches.

Today is the start of the Lunar New Year, called Seollal in Korean. Seollal is a unique Korean tradition, influenced by China, and is based on the lunar cycle. Each year represents a different animal and the cycle is repeated every 12 years. The 12 animals are the following: mouse, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, sheep, monkey, rooster, dog, and pig. The order of the animals is thought to have been based on the sequence in which they were invited to see Buddha. The tiger is this year’s animal, so we are seeing tigers everywhere!

Many businesses are closed today, and generally, this holiday is a family affair with some special traditions and foods. If you’re lucky, you might see some people (particularly children) wearing hanbok, which are traditional Korean garments (above). Rice cake soup (see photo) is one of my favorite dishes; it is a savory hot soup made with disk-shaped rice cakes and other ingredients such as meat and seaweed. The soup symbolizes new beginnings, and Koreans celebrate getting another year older.

So glad you stopped by! I’ll be heading to Seoul next week for a few days, and I’ll be sure to share my adventure.

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