October 6, 2010
It’s October. I won’t mention how many days there are until Christmas, but suffice it to say, the gift knitting had better be underway. Now I know that some of you are SO on top of this and you already have a big box of knitted items finished, washed, and wrapped up carefully in tissue paper, waiting for gift wrapping. (Some day I want to be like you.) Others of us have not even started and are wondering if we even have time to knit for anyone at all this year. The solution? Quick knits. No sweaters, no afghans. I will be sharing some gift ideas over the next few weeks – patterns and yarn suggestions, for the friends/teachers/relatives on your list who get the good stuff. (You know, the handknits.)
This week, let’s talk about cowls. Here in St. Louis, the humidity makes the cold feel like it’s seeping under your skin in the wintertime. I have found that if my neck is warm, then most of the time I don’t even need a coat, if I’m just dashing from car to Loopy or car to home. I made this new cowl last week. I have to admit – it’s not a gift – it’s for me. I love cowls that button instead of smooshing down over your head and hair. These are easy to get on and off. (Having said that, I’ve also made the other kind, and will keep making those as well.)
Here are some of my favorite cowl patterns. (I know that not everyone is on Ravelry. I’ve included patterns both on and off of that site. Rav patterns have an (R) by them.) Now what I need to do is to pick out the patterns and the yarn and line them all up on a shelf, so that I can have a visual of what needs to get done before Christmas.
Quick to knit worsted weight options:
(R) Irish Cabled Neckwarmer (this is the one I made, above)
(R) Crofter’s Cowl (I like the photos as much as the cowl.)
Tudora (cute asymetrical look)
Tom’s Star Crossed Cowl (I love cables. Can you tell? Great for guys.)
Yarn suggestions in worsted weight: Malabrigo Rios (that’s what I used for the one above), Malabrigo Worsted, Malabrigo Twist, Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Worsted, Dream in Color Classy, Cascade 220, Cascade Eco Alpaca or Duo, Madelinetosh Vintage, Blue Sky Worsted Hand Dyes, Lang Yak, and Universal’s Cotton Supreme for a non-wool option.
Sport/DK weight options:
Neck Warmer (love how this tucks under a coat. Great for guys.)
Spiral Cowl (I’d use Blue Sky’s Alpaca Silk – yum)
Honey Cowl (pretty texture. I’d loop it twice around, I think.)
Poinsettia (love everything Anne Hanson designs!)
(R) Felicity Cowl (cable at the top, cable at the bottom)
Ivy Vines Neckwarmer (great vertical & horizontal lines)
Yarn suggestions in sport/dk weights: Alpaca With a Twist Baby Twist, Amy Butler DK, Blue Sky Alpaca Silk, Fiesta Ballet, Hand Maiden Camel Spin, Lorna’s Laces Honor or Pearl or Sport, Shibui Baby Alpaca DK, Studio June Andrea Mae DK, and Cascade Fixation or Blue Sky Skinny Cotton for non-wool options.
Fingering weight options:
Good Luck Cowl (so pretty)
Tapestry Cowl (would look great in Loopy Solids line)
(R) Double Duty Cowl (cowl turned hat turned cowl – cool)
(R) Pretty Thing (isn’t it, though?)
Yarn suggestions in fingering weight: Alchemy Juniper, Dream in Color Smooshy or Starry, Fiber Optic, Fiberphile, Hand Maiden Swiss Mtn. Sea Sock, Madelinetosh Sock or Merino Light, String Theory Caper, Tempted Good Grrl, The Loopy Ewe Solid Series, Sanguine Gryphon Skinny Bugga, and Crystal Palace Panda Cotton or Kollage Luscious for non-wool options.
There. That ought to keep us all busy for a day or two ….