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.

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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…).

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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).

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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).

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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.

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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.

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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):
row 1: slip one st purlwise, K1, YO, pass slipped st over both the knitted stitch and the YO
row 2: knit

Instructions:

  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 rows as follows:
    • 6 rows garter stitch (knit a row then purl a row)
    • 6 rows stocking stitch (knit every row)
    • 10 rows textured stitch
  3. Switch to second skein in the gradient and work rows as follows:
    • 7 rows stocking stitch
    • 9 rows garter stitch
    • 6 rows stocking stitch
  4. Move to third skein in the gradient and work rows as follows:
    • 8 rows textured stitch (start on a knit row)
    • 7 rows stocking stitch
    • 8 rows textured stitch
  5. Switch to fourth skein in the gradient and work rows as follows:
    • 6 rows stocking stitch
    • 9 rows garter stitch
    • 7 rows stocking stitch
  6. Switch to fifth skein in the gradient (lightest colour) and work rows as follows:
    • 10 rows textured stitch (start on a knit row)
    • 6 rows stocking stitch
    • 6 rows 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!

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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

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4 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.

      Like

  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.

      Like

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