Starting the Year Off Warmly

PCOnRecently I saw an ArtYarns post on Facebook that screamed “touch me.” PuffyCowl Really, just look at that thing of beauty. To look at it is to want it around one’s neck.

Before fully researching the pattern, I started dreaming about yarns. On a visit to my LYS, The Flaming Ice Cube, my friend Melinda pointed out a merino/tussah silk yarn in a sorta variegated/hand-painted teal that had some lighter streaks in it. This is my color! I quickly purchased it, then went home to find the pattern.

Oops. The pattern was only available from Mont-Tricot Yarns in Sutton, Quebec, Canada, free with the purchase of a hank of one of three ArtYarns varieties. Nowhere else. (Although soon it will be available from ArtYarns.)

I purchased the yarn on Wednesday or Thursday before a long, 6-performance weekend in Cleveland, and I badly wanted that pattern. So I did the only thing a knitter could do. I called Mont-Tricot and ordered a hank of the specified yarn. The lovely and customer-service-oriented Lucinda emailed me the pattern. I spent all my spare time over the weekend working on this cowl. I took it along to Asheville, NC, and Columbus, OH, for Christmas visits, and finished it about two hours before New Year’s Eve dinner.

PCFrontI had purchased a cashmere jewel-neck sweater (on sale at Talbot’s on Christmas Eve) specifically to wear with this cowl. That’s the sweater in the picture above. I’m standing on my back porch on New Year’s Day. The temperature is about 24 degrees, and there’s about four inches of snow behind me (and much more to follow tomorrow).

I love the cowl. Warm, soft, delicious.

PCBackAfter I finish a sweater for DGD’s American Girl doll, I’ll start the second version of this cowl, with my ArtYarns acquisition.

What do I love the most about this cowl? Besides the yumminess? The three-needle bind-off. Look at that beautiful finished seam! I’ve done two or three three-needle bind-offs now, and I just think it’s a brilliant way to finish a seam. So clean. So professional-looking.

Yep. More of these cowls to follow.

Wardrobe note: My earrings are from Hsu Studios in Berkeley Springs, WV. If you ever have a chance to visit Berkeley Springs on their open studio weekend in September, go! Anyone who loves handcrafts will be in heaven!! (Almost Heaven, West Virginia … Get it?)

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About Jan

Musician and geek and Juris Doctor; lover of fine art and fine craft; mother and grandmother and significant other and friend. Passionate about sewing.

4 Responses to Starting the Year Off Warmly

  1. Emmy Jay says:

    Great cowl! And I agree with you about 3-needle bind-offs — so neat and beautiful…

    It looks like there’s a very similar pattern available for free on Ravelry:

    It’s charted only and doesn’t use the 3-needle bind-of, though — so the one you used seems to be the better one. (Now that I need to wear reading glasses, I’m even less of a fan of charted designs than I used to be.)

  2. Jan says:

    Thanks, Emmy. I think you’re right. The first thing I read about the “Puffy cowl” is that it was adapted by a Mont Tricot customer from another pattern. You may just have identified that pattern.

    Thanks for sharing.

    I’ll start the next one as soon as I finish the sweater I’m working in for DGD’s American Girl doll.

  3. Jan says:

    Emmy, I read again Iris Schreier’s description of the pattern. I was wrong. The pattern is designed by Iris for Artyarns’ Rhapsody Light, Cashmere 3 or Cashmere Glitter and was inspired by a cowl knit by a Mont Tricot customer.

  4. Jan says:

    I keep making corrections to this post …
    Here’s the yarn info from Melinda:
    I forgot to give you the ball band!
    Island Yarns Chesterfield
    Colorway: Peacock
    50% Silk
    50% Merino
    4 ounces/125 grams/250 yards
    Aran Weight
    Hand Wash, Lay Flat to dry

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