Cowling

This is a major knitting stutter for me. I’ve knit it in multiples, this one being my third. It’s Joji Locatelli’s Bobble Cowl. She is of the view that it’s “a perfect way to use up a single skein of yarn.” I agree that it’s pretty close to perfect. I knit this one in Kokon Yarn Bleu Fingering Weight. It’s put up in 437 yard 100 gram skeins. I worked 12 repeats of the 48 row pattern and used up about 360 yards. I’m confident I could have knitted one more repeat. But I felt the length was good at 12.

Obviously, the pattern is mostly a matter of short rows. That’s an easy skill to master. Still, especially at the start of the pattern, I usually need a bit of help recognizing the correct spot to turn. When working the wraps & turns in the first half of the pattern repeat, when the pattern says work to “6 stitches before,” I worked until the 7th stitch from the wrapped stitch gap. I slipped that 7th stitch to the right hand needle and moved the yarn forward. I turned and that created the wrapped stitch. This count means that the stitches will bunch in 6-stitch groups. That works out so that you end the wrap-and-turn sequences in the first half of the pattern repeat with 3 stitches left, the 3rd one being wrapped. That’s the same point where the sequence ends in the second half of the pattern repeat.

Here’s another look at my Kokon Bleu version.

I decided to knit up a gifted skein of Yarn Snob’s A Good Fingering in this same pattern. This is their Holiday Flower Power colorway. Again, for my 4th Bobble Cowl, I worked 12 repeats.

If you’ve wondered, Locatelli’s pattern sensibly doesn’t call for knitting into the wraps as you pass them in any subsequent rows. In garter stitch the wraps don’t detract from the pattern.

The pattern begins with a provisional cast-on so that you’ll have live stitches at the ready to join with your last row of stitches. I use Lucy Neatby’s easy crochet cast-on. It unravels perfectly and easily because all the stitches in the first row are knit stitches. Instead of working Kitchener grafting, I work a 3-needle bind-off. That’s because I sometimes have trouble keeping an even tension while grafting garter stitch. I don’t mind the resultant seam on the inside of the cowl. But working Kitchener at the end will make for a more elegant look. And if you’re knitting for a non-knitter, there’s a more than 50% chance they’ll be wearing the cowl inside out. So if you can manage the graft at least you won’t have the added aggravation of seeing the 3-needle bind-off seam dangling under their chin.

The stitch count stays at 60 throughout the pattern. If you find that you have 2 extra stitches, it might be that you forgot to bind off two stitches at the end of the bobble. Ahem. I’m guessing that you know how I know that.

The Bobble Cowl is big favorite of mine.

Next up is Loop Knallerbse, by Petra Peinze. Stop laughing. It’s not a cowl for a baby giraffe.

Isn’t it cool in a very warm kind of way? I knit mine in Queensland Collection Perth using the Golden Wattle colorway. For some, this sock yarn won’t feel properly next-to-the-neck soft. But I’m not sensitive to that. So it’s a little prickly. So am I sometimes. It suits me well.

This Ravelry freebie is definitely worth your time. It’s so long that you can even pull it up over your head as a snood. Because snoods don’t only have to be mesh bags holding hair at the back of a person’s head. Loop Knallerbse qualifies as a “wide ring of knitted material worn as a hood or a scarf.” New Oxford American Dictionary.¬†I just love that word. Snood. Snood. Snood.

More cowls

Isn’t this a pretty one? It’s Kim Sequeira’s Earth Weave Cowl, a Ravelry freebie. The pattern calls for one skein of Malabrigo Rios and one skein of Noro Silk Garden. My, my. I had both in my stash. The Rios is the “apple green” colorway and, of course, the Noro is responsible for the color-changing blues and greens. This is a slip stitch cowl, a/k/a mosaic knitting. That means there only one color on each round.

Here’s another look.

Earth Weave Cowl is a fun knit and a great cowl. It has a tendency to flip over to its “wrong” (non-public) side when worn. But that’s not any big deal.

This next cowl, tincanknits Undertone, does the same flip-over. Again, no big deal. If the flip bothers the wearer, they can fold the cowl in half lengthwise. Presto! No flip.

Presto? I believe it’s been decades since I wrote, said or even heard anyone write or say that word. A bit of quick research reveals its origins are traced to the late 1500’s when conjuror patter incorporated the phrase from the Italian where it sort of meant “quickly.” OK. Enough digression.

I knit my Undertone, this time, mostly in oddments of String Theory DK. That’s the orange-red shade in the center section. The gold and the green are MadTosh DK left-overs. It’s a very satisfying knit. I’ve knit Undertone once before. (You’ll need to scroll down beyond a beauty of a wrap to see how my first Undertone worked out.)¬†Here’s another view of my new one.

This next cowl is a rather new Ravelry freebie that I just couldn’t resist knitting. It’s loop knallerbse designed by Petra Peinze. I knit mine in Why Knot Fibers Stardust. My skein of Stardust is a beautiful gray fingering weight, with 5% stellina, 20% nylon, and 75% merino. The yarn is next-to-the-skin soft with no scratchiness from the silver sparkly stellina.

Your’re surprised by the shape, I assume. That’s what drew me to the pattern. How on earth would that shape work out? But it does.


Loop knallerbse is an excellent accessory for a blustery winter day. I’ve already gotten a good deal of wear out of it. Hopefully, by June or so, I’ll be able to pack it away for next winter!