knitting in the heat

06 Nov

We’ve had a burst of summer which I’ve enjoyed. It seems a most inappropriate time to be knitting winter woollies but that’s what I’ve been doing.

I’ve finished a Christmas gift intended for someone who will be living in Germany next year. It’s an adaptation of a pattern I first saw at Did You Make That, for a snood – no, not one of those things you use to keep your hair tidy but something more akin to a cowl – with some shaping that fits the neck. The shaping was the really nice bit about it. I mean, a snood/cowl isn’t a fitted garment but I didn’t want it to be too loose, otherwise you don’t get as much warmth as you need in those northern winters.

The snood bug that Karen has sneezed around the blogosphere Is for a snood/cowl made to a free pattern from the Guardian. I chased it up and printed it out. Of course I didn’t have the right yarn but found something soft in my stash that I thought I could knit in such a way that I might get close to the suggested tension. I know from experience that I can’t handle the required size of needles. They’re simply too big for my hands and I make a mess of everything I knit with them (trust me; I’ve tried).

Therefore, I used slightly smaller needles. I expected that my finished article might be a snugger fit than those knitted with the correct yarn and needles. I toyed with the idea of increasing the stitch count to accommodate those considerations, but decided that I’d probably get a usable result by sticking to the pattern.

As you’ve gathered, to some extent I just winged it. I wanted a different look in the sense that I’m not quite so enthusiastic about the amount of roll a stocking-stitch edge invariably gives. I think you need something that sits well under the high collar of a jacket, so I worked the edge on mine in garter stitch. That makes it sit flat but it also reduces the stretchiness. So I have what is a very snug snood/cowl indeed. It’s for a very slender young woman and I think it will look fine on her. It fits me. I know that because I modelled it for Boy’s comment and he thought it looked nice. He’ll usually tell me if he thinks something I’ve done is rubbish.

I’d actually started out with the intention of doing the bandana cowl to be found at Purl Bee, I lacked the amount of dedication required to deal with the short rows that provide the point. What that really means is that I was having trouble seeing what I was doing, so I was after a solution that wouldn’t require too much effort. Therefore, I reckoned a straight number with a couple of simple decreases was readily within my grasp. And so it proved.

Another reason I wanted the garter stitch edge on my snood/cowl was so that it would match the cap I’ve almost finished as part of the same present. Only the latness of the hour now when compared with the earliness of the hour at which I need to start my day tomorrow deters me from clambering up on a stepladder to haul down the box in which there’s more yarn so that I can continue knitting until I do finish it.

What yarn did I use? Two shades of Cleckheaton Flair, an acrylic 8-ply yarn, held together with an unbranded 5-ply acrylic that’s very, very soft. All of those came to me from Great Aunt, otherwise I would have had to go out and buy something and at the moment we’re on a tight budget. The colours are mostly blues but there’s a fleck of greenness in one of the Flairs. As the young woman for whom the snood/cowl and cap are intended is a redhead whose favourite colours are blue and green, I think I’m on a favourite and potentially a winner.

There will be photos. And when I’ve time to sit and tinker there’ll be links to such things as the Guardian and Karen’s blog.


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Posted by on November 6, 2011 in Knitting


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