Tag Archive | cowls

ShaZAM! It’s done!

Wow, that was like magic: this project flew off my needles! I cast on three projects last Sunday, and suddenly I’m back down to one (a sock). You needn’t be too impressed at the speed of this one, given that it was a one-skein cowl in worsted weight on size 8 needles, with a very simple lace pattern that was really barely lace. It was my comfort knitting last night. It’s not been the best week, or two weeks, or summer, to be honest, for a lot of reasons, but yesterday I was in a serious funk. I escaped for Mexican food and a margarita with the sister, which was a lovely treat that helped a lot, and when I got home I picked up the cowl and turned on an old episode of ER. I didn’t expect to finish, but suddenly I was at the end and binding off before the show even ended.

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The pattern is sha-ZAM! on Ravelry. This was a fun knit. I love these one-skein cowls; they’re so easy and fun to wear. And it was a treat to get back to some squishy soft Malabrigo. Makes me look forward to fall, when I can actually wear things like this again. (NOT winter! Note the difference, please, Mother Nature!)

And now, with almost empty needles again, I am eager for my next shawl project, and it’s going to be amazing! I have 3 skeins of Zen Yarn Garden Serenity 20 Fingering in a gorgeous Vivid bundle that I’m itching to cast on. I mean, it’s a whopping 1200 yards of 70% superwash merino, 20% cashmere, with 10% nylon.

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I’m pretty sure this is going to be my first WestKnits project, but I’m debating between The Doodler and the Dotted Rays – Speckled Fade. Have you made either? Both? How do I choose??

Sha-ZAM!

With empty needles, I happily poked through my stash to see what I should knit next, and four pretty little skeins jumped out at me. The first was a skein of Malabrigo Rios, an aberration because I’ve been knitting so much with fingering weight yarn. I had an urge to make a cowl, one of my favorite things to knit. I love to knit on circular needles, I love the feel of merino wool in my hands, and I love to play with different patterns. And best of all, I love having so many cowls to wear when it’s cold.

This skein is the color Aniversario. I’ve bought this colorway before but it’s one where there’s huge variations in colors. I made a Hitchhiker Beyond in this color, but it has a lot of blue/indigo. This skein is mostly red. I chose a fun, free one-skein cowl pattern called Sha-ZAM! and it’s going very quickly.

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I’d forgotten how much I love Malabrigo. It’s so soft, with that yummy squish factor. I definitely need to make my next sweater in Malabrigo!

Two weeks from today, we leave to take the girl to college in Colorado. (EEK!) I’m freaking out a little, but I’m also super excited for her. And I can’t wait to visit my mountains again. Anyway, before she leaves, I decided we needed some family time, so I declared today a Family Fun Day and we all took the day off work. We’ll visit the Jazz Museum, have some lunch, go to a fantastic big vintage record store, and who knows what else. Maybe a movie? I won’t get much knitting done, but that’s all right. Knitting can wait.

Diamonds in the Rough

I recently received a pretty bag of yarn in the mail, some organic cotton from Appalachian Baby. This is another review opportunity, and I got to choose my color palette of the 3-skein U.S. Organic Cotton set. I chose Indigo, Doe, and Natural.

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I had a heck of a time choosing a pattern. The yarn would be perfect for baby items, but I don’t have any babies in my life, so I finally chose a cowl pattern that’s been in my queue for months, Diamonds in the Rough. I’m going to modify it a bit to add stripes. I had some quiet time yesterday, so I took the opportunity to cast on. It calls for a provisional cast on, and it’s been so long since I crocheted that it took me a while to remember how to hold the hook and make stitches! But I figured it out and I’ve made a good little start. (The blue is the provisional cast-on.)

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It’ll be nice to have some cool cotton to balance out the wool in my other projects!

Trenches Cowl

I’m continuing my trend of knitting things that are not socks, and enjoying it quite a lot. After I finished a project on the first day of the year, I thought I needed to start a new project on the first day too. And not just any project, it was going to be a Wonder Woman project! I had a skein of Holiday Yarns Super Sheep DK in the Wonder Woman colorway from a recent road trip to True Blewe Yarns, and I was eager to knit it into something I could wear.

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Choosing the type of project was easy. I don’t wear hats, I just made new mitts, and I didn’t have enough yarn for a scarf or shawl. But I wear a cowl almost every day. I put all the filters into Ravelry to narrow down my choices (don’t you just adore Ravelry??) and discovered a new pattern called Trenches, just published on December 31st. This is how my mind works when picking a pattern: Trenches…hmm, there were trenches in World War I…Wonder Woman fought in the war in the movie, and was in the trenches for the amazing scene at No Man’s Land, so yeah, this is the right pattern! It might be a bit of a stretch, and it’s not really the best yarn to show off the ridges in the pattern, but for me it’s also about the connection between the yarn and what it’s becoming, and this connection pleased me.

It was a fun pattern to knit. Simple but not boring, easy enough to do while watching TV. There’s quite a bit of purling, but I don’t mind purling, so that was fine. Really, it was quite comforting to knit something that didn’t make me think too hard. The only modification I made was to do 10 rounds of ribbing instead of 12 on either end. I wanted to make sure I had enough yarn for all the pattern repeats. And in the end, I had plenty of leftover yarn and could have easily done the full 12 rounds.

I blocked this one pretty aggressively to smooth out the “background” so the trenches might stand out more, and also to shape it evenly. The yarn responded well to the Eucalan wash and the blocking, and it drapes nicely. I’d like to make this pattern again, but in a solid tan/light brown or olive green next time to highlight the texture. But for now, I’m on to another non-sock project!

Knitting, but not Socks

After my Christmas sock-knitting frenzy, I’ve needed a break. The other night, I wanted to binge on the last three episodes of Big Little Lies, and I wanted some knitting to go with it. But I didn’t want to work on socks. I’ve made a lot of socks, I like to make socks, and I’ll keep making socks. But I needed something else. So I poked through my stash and pulled out two skeins I’ve had for over two years. I love the yarn but was never able to find the perfect pattern for it. It was time to decide on a pattern, perfect or not. After perusing Ravelry for a while, I finally settled on the Urchin Cowl and cast on. I modified it slightly so I wouldn’t have to purl as much, so mine doesn’t look much like the example It knit up quickly and I finished it the next night, and I’m quite pleased with it.

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The original was designed so you can wear it over the shoulders as well, and I suppose mine could be, but I prefer it as a big, fluffy cowl.

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I used two skeins of Plymouth Yarn Wilde, an acrylic/alpaca/wool blend that’s lightweight and airy but still warm and snuggly. I’m so glad I finally bit the bullet and cast it on.

That was so satisfying that this morning I pulled more yarn from my stash and cast on for a pair of fingerless mitts. I chose Cozy Thermal Mitts and paired it with my silver Cascade Yarns Spuntaneous Worsted. Since I’m fighting a cold and there was a Harry Potter marathon on TV today, I was able to get them all done, and they’re perfect.

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Okay, not quite perfect: they’re a bit big for me, but still wearable and perfectly warm and cozy. They were so fast and easy to make, and I love that the palms are stockinette. And they really are the same size; the right one just looks bigger because I finished it first and wore it while I made the left one!

Now I have two days left in my holiday weekend and a skein and a half of the Spuntaneous left. Think I can get an infinity scarf done in that amount of time?

It’s Easy Buying Green (Yarn)

The other day I had to leave work early for a doctor’s appointment. It took a while, so there wasn’t really time to go back to work afterward, so I got a bit of fun time. I went and visited my youngest nephew, who I don’t see enough. After that, I wanted to go to the yarn store, but I was going to be good and go get a passport photo taken, since Missouri doesn’t have the Real ID yet and we would need passports to fly starting in January. And in January and February, it’s time for music school auditions. At least three of the girl’s colleges are far enough away that we’ll have to fly. Thus, I needed to get this passport process started ASAP.

As I was driving away from the yarn store neighborhood, I was flipping through radio stations and landed on one I never listen to. It was news, which I never listen to on the radio. But as I listened, the story switched to one about the Real ID, and how Missouri had just gotten an extension through October. I didn’t have an urgent need for the passport photo after all!! If any of you are like me, you know exactly what I did: I turned the car around immediately and drove to the yarn store. It was a sign.

I came home with a single skein of green Plymouth Grande Glow Baby Alpaca, which immediately became a Squishy Soft Cowl within two days. It’s such a lovely pattern, simple and mindless yet not boring to knit or look at. It’s especially nice that you don’t have to keep track of the rounds; no stitch marker needed!

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I love this yarn so much, especially the little bit of sparkle woven through. I haven’t decided whether to keep this one or gift it.

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My other purchase that day was three balls of Classic Elite Yarns Magnolia, which is a luscious merino/silk blend, in this gorgeous green. (I know: green?? No purple? I can’t explain it. I was apparently in a green mood that day. Christmas spirit, maybe.)

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I think this needs to be a shawl/scarf type thing that I can wear during the holidays when I’m feeling festive. But I won’t add any red, because I don’t want it to be exclusively Christmas-y. I’m thinking I might choose the Be Simple Variation for this yarn.

Best thing about these yarns? They were both from the sale section! I walked away spending only $25, and that’s pretty darn good. It probably helps that Christmas is coming and I always hope for a bit of yarn.

This morning I’m home waiting for a couch delivery (more on that soon) so I’m going to take advantage of the time to pull out my yarn and needles! My tender finger is feeling better but I don’t want to rush it, so I’m going to save socks for the weekend and work on something else today. Maybe a Be Simple shawl??

Finished Cowl

Last night was my girl’s last halftime show. They’ll still perform at their competitions, but it’s a wrap at football games for her. She went out with a bang, too: it was an awesome show. I’m actually glad I still have the boy in band so I can still go to the games for shows. But even after four years of high school football games, I still don’t like or understand the game, so it’s always knitting time for me. Last night I was able to finish my Basketweave Cowl.

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It’s so soft and squishy! It’s going to be perfect if/when fall actually hits here in the midwest! I cast on 200 stitches on size 8 needles and kept going until I was almost out of yarn.

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With that done, I need another mindless knitting project. This morning I tried on that sock I’m not liking, and it was too big anyway so I frogged it. I’ll probably just start a new, simple sock for all my band-related knitting this weekend.

Happy Saturday, friends!