Finished project and free pattern – Ombre textured cowl

I finished this on the first of Jan and have only JUST blocked it. (The blocking coinciding with this season’s autumnal temperatures is probably not accidental.)
Pattern is here (at the bottom of this post), if you want to skip my thought process for getting there.


I picked up a happy little ‘Party of Five’ Tough Love Sock gradient kit (by SweetGeorgia Yarns) at the 2015 Pom Pom Quarterly Christmas party (it was a very obliging night for sparking new projects, for me). If you stick around this blog for any length of time you’ll start to notice a recurring colour theme of shades of blue, aqua and turquoise – so this kit couldn’t have been designed better for ticking all of my ‘want it’ boxes. I’d show you a picture of the cute little skeins, except that my lovely knitting buddies helped me wind up all five at the party that night so that I could cast-on for something asap. Love them!

So, I had five skeins of approx 105 yards each, and I wanted an easy-to-knit Christmas project where I didn’t have to worry about concentrating on a pattern while chatting to people (and, perhaps, while enjoying a festive tipple from time to time…).

Oh look!

It didn’t take me long to decide that the beauty of whatever I knitted was going to be in the colours and the ombre effect, so I decided on an easy-peasy minimal-thought cowl with bands of different stitches for interest and texture. I was inspired by some of the stitch patterns from Orlane’s textured shawl recipe, adapted for knitting in the round, and did a little bit of playing around with gauge (and making sure the textured stitch bits only ever followed on from a row of the right colour stocking stitch).


I wanted a long cowl which I’d wear doubled-up most of the time. It lets me wear it comfortably around my neck, or I can scrunch it up for something cosy when it’s extra cold, or I can pretend to be a bandit if I want to (I generally don’t).

But I can if I want to

I did make one mistake upfront, which I worked out about halfway through (but was too lazy to rip back and reknit), which is that I started and finished with bands of garter stitch. Garter stitch is wider than the other stitch patterns I used, and because it’s the same number of stitches all the way through, the top and bottom have a tendency to flip. Luckily for me, the joy of a cowl is that it ALL flips about and twists here and there so it really doesn’t matter. The important thing is the colours, which are always visible.


Quick shout-out to my latest blocking gadgets, which are these KnitPro multi-pin blocking combs. I got a pack from my LYS the other day (who don’t sell online, or I’d link to them instead) and thought I’d give them a go the other night. I love them! They make blocking SO EASY. Pinning out the cowl (I’ve also used a couple of wires at either end) took about three minutes.


I feel a bit of a fraud calling this a ‘pattern’, but for the record here’s what I did.

Ombre Textured Cowl

Needles: 3.5mm (US 4) circular needles

Yarn: ‘Party of Five’ Tough Love Sock gradient kit by SweetGeorgia Yarns (80% superwash merino, 20% nylon)

Gauge: 24 stitches and 36 rows over 10cm/4 inches in stocking stitch

Textured stitch pattern (two-row pattern repeat):
round 1: slip one st purlwise, K1, YO, pass slipped st over both the knitted stitch and the YO
round 2: knit


  1. Starting with darkest colour, cast-on 270 stitches loosely (I used a 5mm needle to cast-on and then switched to the 3.5 mm needles)
  2. Join to work in the round, then work rounds as follows:
    • 6 rounds garter stitch (knit a row then purl a row)
    • 6 rounds stocking stitch (knit every row)
    • 10 rounds textured stitch
  3. Switch to second skein in the gradient and work rounds as follows:
    • 7 rounds stocking stitch
    • 9 rounds garter stitch
    • 6 rounds stocking stitch
  4. Move to third skein in the gradient and work rounds as follows:
    • 8 rounds textured stitch (start on a knit row)
    • 7 rounds stocking stitch
    • 8 rounds textured stitch
  5. Switch to fourth skein in the gradient and work rounds as follows:
    • 6 rounds stocking stitch
    • 9 rounds garter stitch
    • 7 rounds stocking stitch
  6. Switch to fifth skein in the gradient (lightest colour) and work rounds as follows:
    • 10 rounds textured stitch (start on a knit round)
    • 6 rounds stocking stitch
    • 6 rounds garter stitch
    • cast-off all stitches loosely (I used the 5mm needle again)
  7. Block, wear, love

As mentioned above, you might want to swap around the opening/closing garter stitch for a different stitch (like moss stitch) if you don’t want the top/bottom flip effect. That said I kind of love it now – so up to you!


Pattern: As above! Find it on Ravelry here (and stitch inspiration from Orlane’s Textured Shawl Recipe)
Yarn: ‘Party of Five’ Tough Love Sock gradient kit by SweetGeorgia Yarns (80% superwash merino, 20% nylon)
More details: Ravelry project page

16 Comments Add yours

  1. Alina says:

    Oh this looks so so lovely! The gradient effect makes it even more special, thank you so much for sharing your notes!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. felinity says:

      You’re very welcome, and thank you for the lovely comment! I love this yarn and the resulting cowl so very much – super simple but really effective.


  2. smonakey says:

    What a great travel pattern! Thank you for sharing it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Pleasure! I hope you enjoy the pattern, if you decide to make it.


  3. Yolanda K says:

    Love this pattern. Tried to make it, and the textured pattern of mine does not look anything like yours 😦 Not sure what I’m doing wrong. Mine ends up with lots of holes 😦

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh no, I’m sorry to hear that! Send me a message via the contact form if you like and I’ll email you back – if you can send me a picture of yours, maybe I can help diagnose the problem 🙂


  4. Brenda Robinson says:

    I think you have reversed garter stitch and stocking (stockinette) stitch in directing how to accomplish. Garter is knit every row and stocking is alternate knit and purl rows. Newbies might get confused when their cowl doesn’t look like yours.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ahh, not in this case because the cowl is knitted in the round (so you have to knit every round for stocking stitch or alternate knit/purl rounds for garter). However, you have made me realise that, although I mention joining for knitting in the round, I then go on to refer to ‘rows’ which is confusing. Thank you for pointing that out – I’ll switch the ‘row’ references to ’round’ references now!


  5. Brenda Robinson says:

    Also, should #5 be the same as #3? Wouldn’t it be 7 rows, 9 rows, 6 rows, so you can start textured rows on right side?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Same as above – because it’s in the round it you’re always working on the right side. But can’t believe I didn’t notice I was writing rows rather than rounds before!


  6. Carla says:

    I’m planning on making this with my new yarn Santa gave me! What length circulars did you use please?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ahh that’s great, I hope you enjoy! The circumference of this is quite large so most circulars would be fine. I can’t remember the exact length I used but something in the region of 60-80cm should work well.


  7. Meredith Wnek says:

    I am really quite confused trying to make this pattern. I am using Sweet Georgia Party of Five Kit. Looking at the different photos on your pattern and on Ravelry, it seems I am looking at 2 different cowls. For example if you look at the photo of the cowl laid out on the wooden boards; the proportion is very close to “as wide as it is in length of rows”. Other photos show it in a very long almost shawl-like in size. I have even gone back to the yarn shop and they can’t make sense of it. They have a sample someone knit from their own yarn. The width of that cowl is 24″ side to side. I have 270 stitches cast on to my needles. I knit close to gauge and on a rare occasion I recall only one pattern where I adjusted needles. With 270 stitches I have completed 6 rows of garter, 6 rows of stocking stitch with the darkest color (105 yds/skein) and am ready to do 10 rows of the patterned stitch and at best I might have enough of the dark color to do 2 rounds. The woman at the yarn shop disagreed with me thinking at best I might get one more full round, not 2.


    1. Hello there, thanks for the comment! The photo on the floorboards shows the cowl folded in half (and useful to know that that’s not necessarily obvious, I will add a note to that effect!). So it’s the same cowl in all of the pictures, sometimes shown loose and sometimes shown doubled-up.

      In terms of the yarn quantities, it does depend on gauge and also the vagaries of the Party of Five kit (the yarn quantities of each of the five seems to vary a bit). It sounds like your gauge might be quite large if you’re running out of the first colour after 12 rows – you could keep going and not worry too much about not managing as many rows, but if it were me I would perhaps try again on some smaller needles.

      I hope this helps! Thank you for your interest in the pattern and if I can help any more, just ask.


  8. Meredith Wnek says:

    Thanks Kat. I so appreciate you getting back to me. The woman in the knitting store checked my gauge as did I and we both think I’m right on. She suggested a similar solution and just not worry about the number of rounds in the pattern and just get creative as I go through the colors. I like the photo of the cowl on the wooden boards so much that I might try to duplicate the proportion I thought it was not knowing it was folded. I may try to cast on 144 stitches. If I do that I’ll let you know how it comes out. Thanks again ♥️


    1. My pleasure – good luck, and keep me posted!


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