Archive for the 'scarf' Category


Scarf weather has arrived . . .

. . . and thanks to my awesome friend Jean, I am extra-prepared for it this year! She made this scarf for me last spring, but I’m only now getting to wear it for the first time.



Life update

Reading: The Plot Against America, by Philip Roth. A compelling narrative, well-drawn characters, and good writing. I liked this book very much, though reading it made me feel a bit paranoid: I saw in it echoes of the current neocon-driven discourse. Roth writes about Jews, but in many parts if you substitute “Muslims” you see glimpses of the prejudice and fear in our own society today.

Also reading: The Dark Is Rising sequence, by Susan Cooper. Actually, I’m listening to these: the three of us are listening to the audio books together (great for long car rides, and for evenings spent playing with Legos in the den after dinner). We’ve gotten through three of the five books, and Sylvia loves them. So much, in fact, that we started having “Wouldn’t it be nice to take a trip to Cornwall soon?” discussions before we realized that such a trip isn’t in our budget right now. Soon, I hope.

Mucking about with: Google Body.

Knitting: It’s been quite some time (months and months!) since I did a knitting update. Over the winter months I completed several small projects:

  • three sets of baby legwarmers (made from Baby Cashmerino) for three different new babies
  • five (!!!) Seven Circles scarves/necklaces (also from Baby Cashmerino); all but one were gifts for friends*
  • one pair of socks for a child (this isn’t quite finished but will be within a few days, I think); these were supposed to be for Sylvia but are turning out to be too small for her, so they’ll be a gift for someone else

I also knit a February Lady Sweater for myself. I cast on in January, but I did happen to knit most of it in February. Since I finished it, I’ve worn it at least three days each week—I really love it.

BONUS: All of this knitting was done with stash yarn. WOOT! Up next on my plate: a February Lady (Kid?) Sweater for Sylvia. I think I’ll just take the grown-up pattern and knit the smallest size in sportweight (instead of worsted). That ought to fit her, I think. Unfortunately, I don’t have suitable yarn for this (she wants blue, and I’m thinking of something that’s mostly cotton), so I’ll actually have to buy some for this project.

Watching: The Secret of Kells. One of the most visually stunning films I’ve seen in a long time.

* And one of those friends was the person who gave me some of that yarn about four years ago. She gave me three balls of Baby Cashmerino in a deep red color, and that turned out to be just the right amount to make one scarf for her and an identical one for myself.


On the needles…and off again

scarf.jpgAbout two weeks ago, Barnes and Noble’s online store had a brief sale on their edition of the recently published Sock Yarn One-Skein Wonders: 101 Patterns That Go Way Beyond Socks! (Note: The B&N edition has five extra patterns. If you don’t manage to get this version of the book, don’t sweat it–the bonus patterns aren’t that thrilling.) A flurry of e-mails passed among members of my knitting group that evening, and the upshot is that one of my friends kindly ordered an extra copy of this book, which I got for the great price of $2.99.


A week later I saw her and swapped three bucks for the book. I’m still feeling a bit traumatized after the latest Exploding Sock Event, and since nearly all of my sock-yarn stash is 100% wool, I was hopeful that I’d find a nice not-sock project for that fiber in this book.


And I did! The lovely Ericka scarf fit the bill! It has a simple, easy-to-remember stitch pattern. Paired with some Socks that Rock yarn, it made for a very lovely, drapey scarf indeed.




And then I got to That Point. You know the one: the “am I going to have enough yarn for this?” point. I put the rest of the ball on our kitchen scale and discovered that I had just a little over half of it left…and my scarf was only twenty inches long. I am not a fan of short scarves–this sucker had to be sixty inches long or else.


Looking at the pattern again, I see where I went wrong. The pattern calls for 100g ball with something like 450 yards. I had checked the weight of my Socks that Rock (100g! Hooray! It matches!) but neglected to check its yardage, which is not even 350 yards. Crap.


So I took a little trip to Frogville. Now I’m trying to figure out what else to do with this yarn (which handles beautifully and doesn’t do any weird pooling). Suggestions?


Free lunch: Revenge of Scarf-o-rama

This double-sided cable scarf has one cable down the middle–a great project for anyone approaching cable knitting for the first time and with trepidation.

If knitting lots and lots (and lots) of I-cord won’t drive you mad, this I-cord scarf may be just the ticket for you.

The Coal Springs scarf is knit in the round (in a tube) and, according to the author, offers a great introduction to two-color knitting. I think it looks pretty spiffy.

This waving chevrons scarf was originally knit in three colors of worsted, but I wonder how it would look in a variegated yarn.

For the little ones, here’s a kid-sized snake-themed keyhole scarf that looks awfully fun.

If you’re more of a cowl person, check out this pattern, which offers basic instructions for knitting a simple cowl in pretty much any weight of yarn.

And if you’re a cowl person who doesn’t want to drop $750 on a Burberry design, check out this DIY version. I’m not the biggest fans of cowls, but this one may make it onto my to-knit list.


Close call

Remember that Baktus scarf I made last fall of two not-quite-full skeins of Koigu? Sylvia has taken to wearing it–which is great, because it’s the perfect size for her.

During last month’s heavy snowfalls, she spent a lot of time playing outside in the snow. Her pre-play preparations including putting on four layers of clothes* and finishing up with this scarf. After one outside excursion she came back inside only to discover that the scarf was missing. We looked in the yard and even revisited the small hill on the next street (where we’d tried sledding that day) but didn’t find it. Sylvia was a bit unhappy, but I was fairly certain the scarf was somewhere in the yard and would turn up eventually.

Lo and behold, as Jan and I were building a castle (complete with a snow bench long enough for all three of us!) in the front yard a week later, look what we found!



*I know this may seem like overkill, but she’s not shoveling (and therefore not building up a lot of heat), and she does spend most of her time sitting or lying on the snow (so waterproofness is key).


Jumping on the Baktus bandwagon

Apparently the Baktus scarf was all the rage last year among Norwegian knitters–and the non-Norwegians who read the Norwegian knitters’ blogs. I heard about it only recently, when my friend JD posted about it on her blog.

As it turned out, I happened to have two balls of Koigu KPPM (both mill ends of slightly-less-than-standard size) that I’d received as a gift about a year and a half ago. They seemed perfect for the Baktus, so I set off knitting and before long this is what I had:


I thought about alternating the two colors every two rows but decided against it, preferring instead to have two big blocks of color. I love how it looks!

This pattern is very easy to memorize, which makes it excellent for mindless knitting. I like it so much that I’ve already cast on another one–this time using two 50g balls of sock yarn, so I’m hoping it will be a bit longer than my first one.

Incidentally, this is the very time I’ve ever knit with Koigu. Finally, I understand what all the fuss is about. I’m not ready to run off and join the Koigu Cult*, but wow, that stuff is really nice to knit with.
*Two reasons: (1) I can’t afford to knit with Koigu; and (2) most non-accessory garments (e.g., sweaters) knit with Koigu look like a paint shop exploded all over them (and no, that’s not a good thing).


Making waves

Last June I received a wonderful, yarn-filled package from Karen at Yarn Is My Métier. Almost immediately I cast on for Karen’s Mia Shrug (there’s a pattern link on the front page of her blog), using the Jaegar Shetland Aran. It is a lovely pattern (clear instructions! fun to knit!), and the completed shrug was sent—before I remembered to photograph it, alas—to my friend Valérye in Australia.

What to do with the Jo Sharp Silkroad Aran, though? This is really luscious yarn—the sort of thing I wanted to use for something that would be used for a very long time. About a month ago, I realized that in nearly five years of knitting I had yet to knit a scarf for myself. (Gasp!) I couldn’t believe it. So I started looking at scarf patterns. Plain stockinette or garter stitch were out (too boring), as were cables (ate up too much yarn).

p2146255wavyscarfftf.jpgAnd then I remember Wavy, from Knitty’s winter 2004 issue. I’d actually knit this scarf once before as a gift for a friend and had really enjoyed the pattern.* The result is slightly funky, not full of holes (lace scarves are not my thing), and easily dressed up or down.

I loved knitting this scarf again. It’s just long enough for a once-around-the-neck wrap with short tails hanging down—which is fine with me, because there’s no sense in using a lot of super-nice stuff like this for knitting that doesn’t actually touch your skin. The shifting rib pattern gives the whole thing some curves that keep it interesting both to knit and to wear. I may just make another one of these soon…

*I did most of the knitting during the four hours I had to sit in a Quest diagnostics lab office while doing a glucose tolerance test for gestational diabetes. I’d flunked the “quickie” test my midwife gave me at the birth center, so I had to spend half a day drinking a sickly sweet orange solution, waiting an hour, getting my blood drawn, then repeating the whole sequence a few more times. This knitting project and an audiobook kept me from going nuts in the waiting room. And I passed the test with flying colors, fortunately!


Headed to the frog pond

p1185802scarfftf.jpgAfter finishing the B.O.B. Sweater, I decided to knit a scarf for myself. I’ve had a copy of Scarf Style from Interweave for some time, and whenever I look through it I find that I like patterns that I disliked the last time, and dislike those I liked the last time. So as you can imagine it’s hard to me to settle on any project from this book.

This time, though, I had just finished looking through my stash, and when I came across the Midwest Moonlight scarf (Ravelry link here) I remembered that I had the exact yarn it called for: Cotton Comfort, from Green Mountain Spinnery. I love this yarn. I’d bought five skeins of it on a trip to Vermont a couple of years ago and used about two-and-a-half skeins for a baby sweater. The scarf pattern calls for three skeins, but I figured that two and a half would be fine. I don’t really need a scarf that’s seventy-two inches long.

Nor do I need a scarf that’s full of holes, apparently. This is technically a lace pattern, with yarnovers and k2tog and ssk all over the place. But it seemed substantial to me—certainly not flimsy lace. After knitting several inches of this scarf, though, I’m finding that I just don’t love it. It’s pretty enough, but just not me. And I firmly believe that, considering how limited my time is for all the things I want to do, I don’t want to waste any of it on something that I don’t really like. So I’m frogging this sucker.


Free lunch: Scarf-o-rama

Via Craft, I recently rediscovered a pattern I’d first encountered last winter via my SP8 downstream pal’s blog. It’s for a double-sided star scarf that looks awfully fun to knit. I’m thinking about giving this a try with a different motif or maybe even a set of motifs.

And here’s another scarf pattern—this one a foulard—from Topstitchgirl. She writes her blog entries in both English and French, so here’s a fun chance to try knitting from a pattern in another language (with as-needed peeks at the other), if you’re interested.

I couldn’t stop laughing when I first saw this O RLY scarf. If you want to know what’s so funny, check this out. Yes, I wear my geek badge proudly!

Here’s a lovely pattern for a scarflet that fastens with buttons. Me, I’m more of a long-scarf person—something that be wrapped around your neck a couple of times—but I do think this is a nice design and could work very nicely (perhaps in a luxury yarn?) for something a bit more formal.


Free lunch, Halloween style

Shortly after I started knitting, I saw some knitted “fruit hats”–you know, the ones that make babies’ heads look like strawberries or blueberries or whatever. I bought the pattern and realized that I didn’t know any babies. So I knit adult-sized hats as several gifts. (This was my first experiment with modifying patterns.) I knit one orange hat with green leaves and a green stem–I called it the Pumpkin Hat, and I wear it proudly every Halloween.

Apparently, some other knitters out there agree with me that pumpkin hats aren’t just for kids. Crazy Aunt Purl just created her own pattern for a knitted pumpkin hat–and a reversible one, at that. There’s another knitted pumpkin hat pattern at Crafty Crafty.

If you’re not keen on wearing pumpkins but still want them around, try knitting up some seasonal decor: felted pumpkins. The best part is that they’ll never rot.

If pumpkins really aren’t your thing but you want to keep warm while trick-or-treating, a knitted skull illusion scarf may be more up your alley.

Of course you need a bag to haul all that candy loot, right? This candy corn-shaped felted bag should do nicely!

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