Archives for posts with tag: cowl

Hey everyone,

Breaking my radio silence at last… with wedding planning I was going a little nuts (more on that later; I sewed my dress, my bridesmaids’ dresses, and knit a shawl! But it all came out fine and we got married and it was great!) Post-wedding, there were all the thank-you notes to write, and I got done with all that, but still felt like hiding my head in the sand for a while. But I thought I’d reemerge and share a semi-recent FO (ha, semi-recent = knit just before Thanksgiving) with the world, and work my way up to posting about the various things I made for the wedding.

I published the Bel Canto Cowl (rav link) in Knitcircus a couple of years ago, but due to their changes, it was no longer available for purchase from their site. Someone on Ravelry requested it, which was the impetus to reknit, rephotograph, and reformat the pattern for sale on my own site, since I couldn’t use the KC photos/pattern layout. So it’s up for sale on Ravelry, in case anyone was looking for it, and here are some pics:

Pattern: Bel Canto Cowl
Yarn Used: Malabrigo Merino Worsted in 37 Lettuce, 1 skein.
Needles used: US 8 (5.0 mm) 16-inch circulars
Date started: November 21, 2012
Date completed: November 23, 2012
Mods/Notes:
The first version of this cowl was knit in Malabrigo Rios, which is superwash, plied, and slightly thinner than the singles/non-superwash Merino Worsted. I like the extra body and cushier fabric of the Merino Worsted version. Also, I think the lighter color shows off cables better, although there’s no denying that rich cobalt blue from the original versionĀ is TO DIE FOR.

(Side note: I haven’t cut my hair for probably a year, and it’s longer than it’s been anytime since grade school, so I’ve been having fun with hairdos–although this may look vaguely pixieish, it’s actually precariously pinned Heidi braids that came apart immediately after the photoshoot.)

Closeup:

Just saw this cool project: a Prickle (knit jumbo-sized to go around the shoulders) woven through with electroluminescent (EL) wire.

 

Youtube video, Rav link.

It’s been months since I posted (things have been hectic in my non-knitting life!) and I’m almost a month late with posting about this… but better late than never, right?

I’m pleased to announce that I have a pattern published in the Winter 2010-2011 issue of Knitcircus, a Madison-based online knitting magazine. (My pattern is on page 84, but take the time to flip through the whole issue–there are some really great patterns. The layout may look similar to Twist Collective, but unlike Twist, you can purchase the entire pattern collection at once and get ALL the patterns for $8, instead of $8 apiece… my favorites this time are probably Beckett, Treccia, and Sweet Georgia.)

My pattern is called Bel Canto–the design reminded me of a hair-braiding scene in Ann Patchett’s book of the same name. It’s a simple design, all stockinette, flared at the base of the cowl to fit the body where neck meets shoulders, with simple rolled edges at the cast-on and bind-off–the one focal point of the design is a dramatic three-strand plaited cable framed with lace eyelets and sweeping diagonally across the cowl.

The sample was worked in Rios, the new plied, worsted-weight, superwash merino yarn from Malabrigo. I was afraid the color (Azul Profundo) might be too dark to photograph well, but it came out fine. It’s a lovely yarn, a bit thinner, shinier, and more slippery than the normal worsted weight singles yarn. I think you could substitute normal Malabrigo Worsted Merino in this pattern pretty easily, but I might go up a needle size for improved drape.

This was my first magazine publication, and it was exciting seeing my design professionally modeled and photographed! How cute is this photo?


This would make a nice quick Christmas present if you are so inclined–it uses less than one skein (210 yards) of Rios. In fact, the original prototype for this cowl was knit in just a few hours, and used only 98 yards of yarn (the La Lana Phat Silk Phat I picked up in Taos last summer)–it didn’t have the flared shaping at the base, though, so I don’t think you could pull off that low yardage with the current version of the pattern.

Anyway, if you’re interested, I have one copy of the Knitcircus Winter 2010-2011 Pattern Collection to give away! Leave a comment by midnight on Saturday December 4 telling me what yarn you’d use to make this, and I’ll do a random drawing on Sunday. I’m on the East Coast (Boston and NY) for the whole month of December, so I’m hoping that since I won’t have my normal life and domestic responsibilities to distract me, I’ll get a little more time to catch up on updating my blog. And finish my Christmas knitting and shopping in the next two weeks. It might be too ambitious a plan, but hope springs eternal.

OK, folks, ready for some magic?

Abra…
hatlat

Cadabra!
hatlong

Presto…
cowllong

Change-o!
cowllat

OK, it ain’t David Copperfield, but it’s still pretty cool, right?

My latest pattern release, Latitude and Longitude (Rav link for purchase: buy now), is a set of three accessories, meant to be knit up in two complementary colors of Noro Kureyon, Silk Garden, or another self-striping yarn: the PDF includes instructions for a scarf, cowl, and hat. All three are fully reversible and, as you saw, have vertical stripes on one side and horizontal stripes on the other. You only use one color per row, and there’s no real fancy business going on, stitch-wise–the basic pattern is just knits, purls, and slipped stitches. There are a few fancier things happening in the hat to keep the decreases as balanced and invisible as possible, but follow the written directions or chart and you’ll be fine.

I probably shouldn’t gush too much about the awesomeness of my own work, but seriously, I love these. (Sadly, one hat and the scarf have gone missing already. I seem to always lose my absolute favorite knitwear. At least I still know where two rainbowy cowls and a hat are.)
set

I first came across the stitch pattern a couple of years ago, in Jane Neighbors’s out of print Reversible Two-Color Knitting, which I found in the Cleveland Public Library system (one of Cleveland’s only redeeming points, in my humble opinion). It took a while, but one day I realized its full potential as I was contemplating another Noro striped scarf–previously my favorite renditions were the vertically striped two-color brioche rib or the horizontally striped mistake rib scarf. I realized that with this pattern, at last, there was no need to choose between the two.

So I worked up the scarf, then put the pattern into the round for the cowl, and last but not least, figured out some nice-looking decreases for the hat–I think it looks pretty good from both sides:
hattop
hattop2

The opposite directional striping shows up when you fold up the brim of the hat:
hat

Or when you fold down the edge of the cowl:
me6

Or when your scarf twists or folds, as scarves are prone to do:
IMG_1517
IMG_1462
IMG_1482

The hat and cowl each take two skeins of Noro–the scarf, a more budget-busting four skeins. The cowl, like most cowls, is pretty much just a big tube, but it is a nice portable piece of knitwear to tote around in your purse (or murse, or pocket, as the case may be) in case your neck gets cold.
me2

One of the hardest things about knitting these two-color Noro pieces is picking out colors that will work together.

Contrasting dark and light, warm and cool, dull and bright colors seems to work well. But there are always those surprising lengths of weird colors like neon yellow or muddy olive that aren’t visible from the outside of the skein, then show up with a vengeance when you’re halfway through. Liz and Other Liz, friends from my Wednesday night knitting group, were kind enough to test knit for me; Liz (or Other Liz?) had to frog a bunch of her hat because two nearly identical shades of green showed up in both skeins at the same time. I try to avoid these situations by keeping both the centerpull and outside end of each skein accessible, and switching them out as needed. But sometimes just cutting out a length of a nasty color is unavoidable.
IMG_1480

A perfect example of careful color selection: the hat I lost was knit in an ivory colorway of Silk Garden contrasted with purple shades, which seemed to go together really well when I held up the skeins next to each other, but the contrast all washed out when it was knit up. It was attractive and subtle, but didn’t photograph well–so it was a good opportunity to choose the two most garish colors of Kureyon in my stash and knit up hat #2.
me5

The two-sided stripes help camouflage everyone’s other least favorite thing about Noro (well, aside from twigs, breaking, uneven spin, and all the other things I see people complaining about on the Ravelry Yarn forum every few weeks like clockwork)–knots, with completely different colors tied together at the join.
IMG_1466

So there you go. Latitude and Longitude. Please consider them for your future Noro striped accessory needs! More info, including a chart of possible yarn substitutions and links to tubular cast-on and bind-off tutorials, can be found on my main pattern page.
me9

OK, aside from “have a happy one,” I don’t have much to say about Halloween, actually. We forgot to carve a pumpkin this year, and our costumes are homemade but pretty half-assed (I’m wearing a Kittyville hat, Rahul’s wearing his mustache hat.) I have a bag of Fun Size Kit Kats at the ready (but this size is the least fun of all! They should name the Costco-sized, bigger-than-Family-Size, baking-and-industrial-use-only candy bars “Fun Size.”) No children have come by, yet, though.

Mainly, I’m really looking forward to the show we’re going to in a couple of hours: local Madison bands are impersonating greats of the past, many of which are particular favorites of mine: Spinal Tap, Nirvana, Oasis, the Stone Roses, Weezer, and the Kinks.

Aside from that, tomorrow is a big crazy Halloween party in downtown Madison (not sure if we’ll go) and more than that, tomorrow is my trip with fiber-lovin’ friends to the Wisconsin Spin-In! It’s nearly 2 hours away, but hopefully will be lots of fun.

Here are two things I want to share with you today:

Are you ready to see the cutest baby sloth in the entire world and squeal over sleepy sloth cuteness? Then watch this Youtube video. Sneezing panda, you have been deposed from the Youtube animal baby throne.

Also, I just published a new cowl pattern named Metheglin. I’ve been working on this for ages (Nicole helped me test knit this back when I was still in Bloomington) and I finally finished reformatting the chart and instructions. You can see the details of the pattern here. It’s kind of Teva Durham-meets-Louis Comfort Tiffany, kind of science fictiony, kind of Arts and Craftsy, and because it uses so little yarn, it’s a great showcase for small amounts of something special–a variegated or self-striping main yarn would look great in this pattern, contrasted with a solid color.

I’ve been wearing these cowls a ton while I’m working at home. The garter stitch makes a thick, dense, cozy fabric that traps heat around my neck like a little chimney, and the tidy cowl feels much easier and less cumbersome than wearing a scarf at home. I like the fact that the base of the cowl flares to cover the top of my chest, an area that gets cold easily. (I’d call that area the dickey zone, but that sounds like something else entirely.) The only problem with wearing it is that I really look like a crazy woman when I’m all kitted up in my usual work-at-home outfit of blue penguin pajama pants, handpainted, handknit sweater, and this cowl and the UPS guy comes to the door to have me sign for a package. At least I’m warm.



I ran across this site where Tony Hawks, a British comedian, posts the mail he gets that is mistakenly addressed to Tony Hawk, the American skater, and his replies. Among them:

dear tony
I playing ur game and see dat you don’t look the sam in the games as you site. i tink you are hott. do yuo wear a mask? i think you are the best. i can olly and on my skat bord i can also do an olly bone-to-bone cornbread. i want to know if you can cum to howse and jump on my ramp and then we go for ice-creem and walk along the beech and wach the sun set.
irie love Billy Sixx
p,.s can u make a rollerblading game so is can play too games and not won.

Dear Billy,
If I came to your house, jumped on your ramp and then went for an ice cream and a walk along the beach to see the sunset, you have absolutely no idea how much trouble I’d get into.
TH



Hey Tony….man, you are one helluva skater…I want to be just like you when I get older. Wow.

- Doris

Doris,
If you really want to be just like me when you’re older you’ll need to undergo considerable surgery.

TH



Tony what was your first ever trick you did and what was your favourite trick you ever did?

Liam

Liam,
I’ve stopped turning tricks since they cleaned things up around Kings Cross.

You probably wouldn’t want to know what the trick was.

TH


can you send me a copy of tony hawk 2 please
No


Bout ye big guy!!!!! Tone, I’m like ur bigest fan.i’m 9yrs old and bin sk8ing for like 2 yearsur amazing man, u rock dude i am your biggestt fan i gotta go luv will

Will,
We should hook up some time. You seem exactly my type of guy. It would be nice to sit down over a sherry and discuss Proust, listen to poetry and do the odd ‘ollie’ if the fancy takes us. I’ll be in touch.

Possibly

TH



hey sup man i have this ninja trutle flat skateboard but i can’t do anything on it and people when i ride by on it call me a fag do you think you can help me not be a fag anymore?Then maybe sometime i chould come over to your house and bring some peanut butter and jelly sandwitchs and you can get the star wars movies!!!

Believe me, coming round my house with peanut butter and jelly sandwiches to watch a film isn’t necessarily going to help you lose the ‘fag’ tag.

TH


Also, a couple of things. I started a Hemlock Ring blanket as a wedding present, in addition to the YELLOW! shawl. It will be a mindless knitting project, while the other one is the original design project.

It’s going pretty well–I’m at row 40 now–but I’ve been consumed today with the urge to cast on for a new hat instead of working on the billion things I have going already.

The yarn I’m using for the Hemlock Ring is the one recommended in the pattern, Cascade Eco Wool, but mine is a creamy natural color rather than heathered gray. It’s a pain in the butt to wind the mega-skein into a mega-ball, but the yarn is soooo soft, squooshy, woolly, and delicious to work with, and not a single knot or end to weave in in 478 yards. I love it.

I’m using 40″ Addi Turbos. I love these too! I’m not crazy about metal DPNs, but Addi Turbos are so great to knit with–I love the shiny, smooth nickel finish and the flexible cord. I started the blanket with Emily Ocker’s circular cast-on and used the Magic Loop technique until the blanket got big enough to stretch all the way around the needle.

Be forewarned if you decide to make this that there are errors in Round 35 of the pattern. Because I didn’t realize this, and I also had missed a YO in the previous lace round in the first pattern repeat, I had a hell of a time getting through Round 35. A correction can be found at the Rainey Sisters blog, where they’ve also worked up a symbol key for Brooklyn Tweed’s chart. I’ll post the correction again here, this time with the corrections highlighted, so you can see what they are–deletions in red and crossed out, insertions in blue:

Round 35:
35th rnd: *O, k 1, O, * sl 1, k 2 tog, psso, O, k 4, O, sl 1, k 2 tog, psso, (O, k 1) twice; sl 1, k 2 tog, psso, k1 (k 1, O) twice. Repeat from * around.

The other thing is this: I’m going to be selling my patterns soon through some other venues, not just self/Ravelry-publishing, and since retailers will be taking a cut (which I hadn’t planned for originally when pricing everything out), I’m raising the price for the Prickle Moebius Cowl pattern, from $4 to $5, at the beginning of June. If you’ve been thinking about buying it but haven’t gotten around to it, now is the time. Just wanted to give you some fair warning in case you agree that cowl is the new scarf. I’ve been thrilled to see a couple of finished objects popping up: Christy at Neither Hip Nor Funky finished a Prickle cowl for a giant cowl swap; you can take a look at it here. There is also this lovely one on Ravelry that knittingchemist made in Lettuce Malabrigo Worsted. How great is this color:

Well, I’m off to read some Proust over a glass of sherry, knit on the Hemlock Ring, and do the odd ‘ollie’ or ‘kickflip indy’ if the urge overtakes me. Pip, pip, cheerio!

Over the past couple of days, I spun up the last ball of roving I had sitting in my stash–a fluffy gray ball labeled Cotswold-angora-bamboo, with angelina glitz, but (I think) mislabeled, as it seemed like just plain gray wool to me. I overdyed the roving with Kool-Aid to a nice red, but this was not entirely successful–I made the formerly fluffy, easy-to-draft roving kind of crusty and sticky. Even with tedious hours of pre-drafting, it came out very thick-n-thin, which I’m choosing to view as adding character to the handspun two-ply rather than as a drawback. I’ll put up pictures later.

It’s amazing how nice it feels to use up everything in my fiber stash–even if it means I’ve added a few hundred more yards to my yarn stash. (We won’t talk about that part–shh!)

To replenish, I mail-ordered the Autumn Oak roving from Jehovah Jireh that I’d been drooling over at the Fiber Event but didn’t have the cash for at the time–it’s a pretty wool-alpaca blend in autumn colors: red, orange, yellow, brown–and threw in 4 oz. of their “Cappucino” roving, a wool-alpaca-tussah silk blend.

I had a wonderful surprise the other day: my Prickle moebius cowl won “Best Original Design” for the Malabrigo March design contest! I’m getting a skein of merino worsted and a skein of the new Malabrigo superwash sock yarn as prizes! I was so thrilled. I’ll post pictures of the sock yarn as soon as I get it, and pass it around at knitting night to get some thoughts on the yarn from real sock knitters’ perspectives. I suspect that like the rest of the sock yarn in my stash, it will be slated for something other than socks, like a lace scarf or some fingerless mitts. (I found these Cranford Mitts on Ravelry the other day and got really excited about fingerless mitts again. The photo on the site is uninspiring, but all the color combinations in the finished projects are just gorgeous.)

Anyway, I was pretty surprised and excited. I knew my pattern scored pretty high on the originality factor, but the other patterns posted for Malabrigo March were really stiff competition as far as basic appeal and loveliness. Here is a list of Ravelry links to all the patterns posted for the Best Original Design contest for Malabrigo March. Check them out!

It’s suddenly 70+ degrees in Bloomington, and the trees are leafing out now: drifts of white petals are blowing past my window like snow. I like warm weather, but I wish the flowering trees could have a longer season.

Sometimes I really hate the internet. What happened to the good old days when I used to make plain-text web pages in pico and read webpages using Lynx? Rahul has been bugging me for a while to set up my own site, which seemed like a good idea, but I spent ages yesterday looking through hosting plans and trying to buy a domain name (featherandfan.com; I finally managed, though GoDaddy’s site is the busiest, most hideous piece of garbage I’ve seen in a long time).

I do like using WordPress, so I’m thinking of switching to a self-hosted installation of WordPress. Does anyone have words of advice for me, or recommendations for a good web host? I have no idea how many GB of bandwidth I use or how much storage I would need–since my photos are hosted on Flickr, I assume not that much, but maybe I’m overlooking something here. And what about backups? I don’t like the idea of having to back things up manually.

I want:

  • no setup fee
  • short contract period or monthly billing (since I don’t know what tier of hosting I need, and would like a trial period with any provider to see if I like working with them)
  • cheap rates, preferably under $10 a month
  • clean, easy-to-use interface (for example, I loved the site design of asmallorange.com, recommended on Ravelry by HelloYarn, but it seems like you they don’t give you as much for your money as other hosts)
  • reliable

Rahul hosts stuff on nearlyfreespeech.net, but they have a weird pay-as-you-go system and I would prefer for my site not to go down if someone links to me and I run out of bandwidth money in my account. Maybe this is not a big risk, really, but it seems like they’re more catering to people with small sites that don’t get a lot of regular visitors. I don’t get a ton of regular visitors (yet! hope springs eternal) but would like to, so having to refill my account balance all the time seems like a hassle…

Also, PayPal. Ugh. I don’t know if I should upgrade my account to Premier right now or not. I probably will have to eventually, but my year ends in June, apparently, so I can receive 5 more credit card payments before then. How am I supposed to know if it would come out better for me financially to upgrade now or later? I have to guess how many credit card payments I’ll be getting between now and June and in what ratio to funded payments?

Stupid internets.

Here are some things that make me happy, though, in the interest of keeping things positive or at least neutral, on balance.

  • Kroger’s house brand of organic ketchup. Way better than any other ketchup I’ve ever tried. (This Malcolm Gladwell article has some really interesting things to say about ketchup, by the way.)
  • A new cafe in Bloomington called The Pour House. All proceeds and tips go to charity. It’s right on Kirkwood, across from the library, and has a fireplace, couches, wi-fi, and is generally clean, well-lit, and comfortable.
  • This new reversible scarf pattern I’m working on, tentatively called The Water Is Wide, knit up in Malabrigo Silky Merino in Indiecita. The colors look kind of weird in these photos, but it’s really quite pretty–lavender, slate blue, teal, pale yellow, rose, mint green, all mixed together, but with similar color values, so the yarn doesn’t read as too variegated or blotchy. I don’t know if I’ll have enough yarn to make this scarf decent-sized, actually–I have 300 yards, but the pattern is kind of a yarn eater.
    I really didn’t mean to cast on for a new project, but inspiration struck while I was in the shower and I ended up making a couple of swatches. I can’t decide what other yarn to knit it up in–I kind of want to do Patons SWS in Natural Denim, but I also kind of feel like I should use something I already have in my stash.

    • One side of the scarf
    • The other side (I think it will look better once it’s blocked)
  • Hulu. I’ve been addicted to Bones, in particular. I just wish they would buffer content when you have the video paused, since my internet connection sucks sometimes and it makes it choppy as hell to watch.
  • Tiny baby tortoises!

Also, final note. someone on Ravelry wanted to know what Prickle looks like from behind. Here it is, in case you were wondering too:

So the Islands show was amazing. We stood up in the front and, unlike on St. Patrick’s day, there was minimal moshing and we were able to relax and enjoy it all. There was a very drunk or stoned girl nearby who kept stumbling into me and yelling things. I think maybe the best thing she said was when she turned to her boyfriend and said, “Oh my God, look, two little Asian guys on stage, darlin’!”

The band came out looking appropriately 2000s-indie-rock, all wearing all-black, with skintight jeans and ridiculously 80s giant velcro shoes, and the lead singer, Nick Diamonds, had some kind of weird white face paint thing going on. They were fun, on key, had tons of energy, sang a good mixture of old and new songs, and the best part of all was when they did their encore: they pulled people up on stage to sing and dance along to “Rough Gem,” one of my favorites. So we jumped on stage and danced and sang, and all in all it was a great evening.

Last night was also the second night this week I came home drenched in beer. Not from Rhino’s, which is an all-ages club; we went to Yogi’s afterwards and had drinks with business school friends. At one point, a very drunk and upset girl stormed over and started screaming at my friend Joseah that he was an asshole. (He was talking to her earlier but wouldn’t tell us what he had said.) When the people gathered around didn’t pay enough attention to her, and raised their glasses for a toast, she shoved them, sloshing beer all over me and breaking someone’s shot glass. She spent the rest of the night alternately crying by herself and extracting attention and drinks from various men around the bar. Good times. The victim of the enbeering was my Sunrise Circle jacket this time (last time, a store-bought cashmere sweater). Sigh.

So I finished knitting my third version of this moebius cowl pattern I’ve been working on, called Prickle, and I’m going to release it for sale on Ravelry soon. I will be surprised if there’s any huge demand for it, but I want to test out the pattern sales feature with something small first. With any luck, I will make enough money off it at some point to cover the cost of the yarn I used to test knit it…

Here are some photos of the three versions. Each takes less than 220 yards of worsted-weight yarn. The pattern is a moebius strip (a one-sided figure) cast on at the equator and knit outwards in both directions in a reversible lace pattern, with a sideways, knit-on edging to bind off–two variations provided, a lace edging and a garter stitch edging:

A lavender version with lace edging, in Berroco Ultra Alpaca in Lavender Mix:

A red version with garter stitch edging, in Malabrigo Merino Worsted in Red Mahogany:

A white version with garter stitch edging, in Noro Silk Garden in 269 (natural):

Wish me luck!

The Bird in Hand mittens, as I mentioned in my last post, have been hurting my hands. I bent one or two of my steel DPNs into gentle arcs trying to force the decreases. Still, soldiering on with them in search of the perfect mittens–the Selbuvotter mittens, as it turns out, are about an inch too long for my hands, and rather loose, so they’re not as warm or comfortable as they should be. I’m considering making liners, but the thumbs are already pretty stiff and snug, so that might not work well.

Here’s the palm of the mitten in progress, no flash…

And here’s the back of the hand in progress, with flash.

Because my fingers were hurting from wrestling with the DPNs, I just had to take a break when my package from WEBS arrived.

On the left, one of the size 0 DPNs I’m using for the mittens; on the right, one of the size 19 Denise needles I used for this latest FO.

The sweater in question? The Shopping Tunic, from Twinkle’s Big City Knits–and I knit the entire sweater in two evenings. At this rate, I could knit 182 sweaters a year!

Unfortunately, you kind of get out of it what you put into it. All my photos came out hideous and I have a sinking feeling this is because the sweater itself is hideous.

Here’s the least hideous of the snapshots. Gah! I mean, I love it in theory, but the gauge looks so loose and sloppy. I blocked it and everything. And it’s certainly not very flattering. Perhaps if I wore sleeker clothes underneath, in similar and darker colors, it would work better. I don’t like that big lump where you can see the waistband of my jeans.

Rahul was not a big fan of this. I tried it on to show him, and he looked dubious.

“Um. Are you giving this to someone else?”

“No.”

“Is it meant for wearing around the house?”

“No, you’re supposed to wear it out.”

He considered this for a moment and said, diplomatically, “I think the stitch size is too big.”

“But that’s the designer’s signature style!”

“Sorry. I guess I’m just a plebeian.”

“Well… it’s stylish! It was in Anthropologie!”

“No WAY!!” he exclaimed, unable to restrain his disbelief–then added, “Actually, I don’t know what Anthropologie is, but whoever they are, they did not have this sweater.”

I had to try and find the Butter Hill funnelneck online to show him. Then, because it was striped and this is not, he wouldn’t believe it was the same sweater.

“It looks like chain mail!”

“Nooo!”

“It looks like you’re about to ride into battle! You look like Barbarossa!”

Anyway–I’ll have to see if I can do anything with the styling to make it more wearable. Till then, the jury is still out on this one.

Thankfully, I do like this Flared Lace Smoke Ring I finished last week. (Isn’t that a great sweater I’m wearing? Sadly, I didn’t make it–I bought it at an Old Navy after-Christmas sale)

And this is how we wear the cowl in the old country:

Pattern: Heartstrings Flared Lace Smoke Ring

Size: As specified by the pattern: 28″ around at the base, 22″ around at the top, 18″ long.

Yarn used: Elann Silken Kydd in Baked Apple, 1 skein

Needles used: US size 6/4.0 mm Denises

Started: 12/26/07

Finished: 1/3/08

Mods: Used less than the specified yardage of yarn. Bound off with a *k1, k2tog, slip st back to left needle* BO to create a stretchy, ruffled BO edge. Other than that, nothing.

Notes: Fluffy, soft, easy, and pretty–a nice use for one skein of laceweight. Notes on the yarn are here. The stitch pattern looks complicated, but is repetitive enough that this became my TV knitting once I got through the decrease charts. (You knit from the bottom up, decreasing for a few lace repeats, and then work the last chart, keeping the stitch count constant, until the cowl is the length you want it.)

I might send this to my grandma. I’m not sure if she would wear it or if she would prefer the traditionally shaped scarves/shawls she already has.

I’m buying Barbara Abbey’s Knitting Lace with my latest Amazon gift certificate. Has anyone seen/used this book? I love the edgings section in Barbara Walker vol. 2, and I’m hoping this book will be a worthwhile supplement. Plus, it sounds like the patterns are charted–bonus!

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