Hi everyone! How about a late-for-Christmas present?
I cobbled together this cowl as a present for my mom and to use up some really nice fingering cashmere I had from School Products. It's kind of a combination of the shape/button of Knitty Gritty Thoughts' Spiral Cowl (a pattern you know I love) with the stitch pattern in Leila Raabe's Shaelyn, another beautiful pattern I'm dying to try. I have to admit I didn't buy the Shaelyn pattern -- just eyeballed it and assumed that the wavy stripes were done in "Crest of the Wave," an old Shetland lace pattern.
I see that School Products no longer has the yarn I used, but this would be a good project for one skein of Jade Sapphire 2-ply.
The pattern is for a woman's cowl -- if you want to make one for a child, it could easily be done by taking out one or two pattern repeats (the pattern repeat is 12 stitches) and knitting only three stripes of the lace pattern. Or if you want your cowl to be bigger, cast on an extra 12 stitches and work five stripes of the lace pattern.
Update 1/14: Thanks to Marina Carelli, who has translated the pattern into Italian. You can download the pdf (in both languages) here.
Size: 21 inches circumference, 9 inches tall
Gauge: 7 stitches and 9 rows = 1 inch
Yarn: 200-300 yards fingering weight yarn in something light and luxurious, like cashmere.
Needles: 16-inch circular needle, size 3 or whatever size will give you gauge
Notions: one stitch marker, tapestry needle, one coordinating button
K2tog: knit two stitches together
Ssk: slip-slip-knit: slip the next two stitches one by one as if to knit. Return both stitches to left needle, then knit them together through the back loop
YO: yarn over
Cast on 144 stitches and join to work in the round, being careful not to twist. Place a stitch marker at the beginning of the round (where you just joined yarn).
Work two garter ridges: Knit one round, purl one round, repeat these two rounds once.
Work one repeat of Crest of the Wave pattern:
Round 1: Knit
Round 2: Purl
Round 3: *k2tog twice, (YO, k1) x 3, YO, ssk twice, k1, repeat from * to end of round
Round 4: Knit
Round 5: Repeat round 3
Round 6: Knit
Round 7: Repeat round 3
Round 8: Knit
Round 9: Repeat round 3
Round 10: Knit
Round 11: Knit
Round 12: Purl
Work 12 rounds stockinette (knit all rounds).
Work another repeat of Crest of the Wave pattern.
Continue alternating 12-round stripes of stockinette and stripes of Crest of the Wave pattern until there are four stripes of Crest of the Wave. Then work two more garter ridges (knit one round, purl one round, repeat these two rows once). Bind off loosely (I used Jeny's Surprisingly Stretchy Bindoff).
Weave in ends and block very well -- I recommend wet blocking. You can stretch your cowl slightly in blocking it to open up the lace pattern and to make sure your fabric has some drape. You will find that the lace pattern is more "wavy" on the bottom than the top -- feel free to try to pin it in such a way that you make both the top and bottom as wavy as possible. I did this, and it sort of worked.
To finish your cowl, pick up three stitches at the top edge and knit a length of i-cord about 1.5 inches long. Make this length of 1-cord into a buttonhole loop by tacking down end of i-cord next to where you picked up the stitches and weaving in the end. Try on your cowl with the buttonhole loop at the top and fold over the loop to overlap cowl at the neck as tight as you would like it to be. Mark the place where the buttonhole falls when you do this, then sew your button at this place.
Your cowl is done! You can wear it loose and unbuttoned (like my lovely Mom is wearing it in the picture), or you can tighten it around your neck with the button to keep out the wind.