I think I'm giving up on the aran cabled shrug. My yarn (silk/wool/cashmere Noro Kabuto in a rich claret color) is gorgeous, but it's got that thick/thin thing going, and also has some color variegation so the finer details like the double seed stitch just aren't showing up. In addition, it occurred to me that maybe a petite person shouldn't wear something that has an 8" wide cable section going across her shoulders. I think I might get overwhelmed by it.
I do have some natural bulky BFL that I could dye, if I really wanted to knit the shrug. The patterning would show up so much better with a smooth-textured yarn. But the thought of dyeing 2.5 lbs of yarn and then spending 30 hours knitting it up, only to find that it looked terrible on me ... well, that thought definitely gives me pause. I'm going to knit a little more of it, stretch it across my shoulder, and see if that gives me a better sense of how it might look.