I’ve been doing quite a bit of test knitting recently, making the most of the free time I have now, before our little one arrives, turning our world upside down in the best way, leaving me little time for knitting. Maybe I be one of those crafty mothers you see on Instagram, posting pictures of their baby calmly napping, while they work on their projects, but I’m not sure that’s going to be the case - at least for a few months anyway!
One pattern I have been trying out has been this colourful cowl by Verena Cohrs of Sustainablist, and it’s called the Verizontal Cowl. Although by now I’ve made a few garments and a few shawls and hats, I’ve never actually made a cowl, so this was something I had been looking forward to starting. I feel like cowls can be a bit more practical than shawls and scarves, as you don’t have to worry about them constantly slipping off your neck, training along the floor, or getting lost.
The design of the cowl is made up of different stitch patterns which form a diagonal stripe across the width. There’s a mix of double moss stitch, garter stitch and broken rib, with a few eyelets too. None of these stitches are particularly difficult to master, but keeping track of where they all should be can be a little tricky in this pattern. Once you've done a few rows though, it's very easy to read your knitting and know which part of the design is coming next. That being said, I think it helps if you have a bit of knitting experience behind you, so that you can see the design developing.
Once you’ve got to the end of the pattern, Verena tells you to join the two ends with kitchener stitch, and I used this tutorial. Somehow, this part is where I made a bit of an error. I think I did my kitchener stitch on the wrong side of the fabric as you can see where the join is, but I’m not really too bothered. It’s the type of thing that only I will notice, and as the join is at the back of the neck anyway, it’s unlikely anyone will even see it.
Once I finished the cowl, I actually thought that I’d made a mistake with the stitch pattern, but after blocking, the yarn bloomed and the stitches completely opened out to show off the design. It’s the perfect length to wrap once around your neck, keeping you warm and cosy.
I used the recommended yarn which is a lovely DK weight wool from Cambrian Yarns and I really enjoyed working with it. I decided to go for a bit of a brighter colour than my normal grey, white and pink palette, choosing this mustard colour, which really shows off the design of the cowl. It’s a rustic-ish yarn, but is still soft enough to wear around the neck without getting too scratchy.
Initially there was a little problem with my order, but the people at Cambrian Yarns were so friendly and helpful, I couldn’t recommend their service enough!
This cowl is actually something I reach for even more often than a lot of my other shawls, as it’s such an easy thing to throw on over a leather jacket.
CLICK HERE to find this project on my Ravelry page.