“Something in the air”

“Are you a dreamer? Turn your dreams into a reality and take a dive into this must have accessory. Throw aside all your cares… don’t worry, it won’t be hard! The ethereal spark of lace may look difficult but really it’s not. This one was designed to travel across your needles effortlessly like a gypsy traveling from town to town.”

This is how Joji Locatelli, a lovely knitwear designer from Argentina, describes her lacy cowl on her Ravelry pattern page.

Beautiful idea behind, isn’t it? I fell in love with this design immediately, but had a lot of respect of knitting the lace parts… but oh well… we learn from every failure, right? ;)

So I decided to make this cowl really luxury… and as I couldn’t get the yarn the pattern calls for (which is Silky Merino by Malabrigo (51% silk/49% merino) and DK weight), I chose at first Madelinetosh Pashmina, which is 75% superwash wool, 15% silk and 10% cashmere in sport weight.

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The colorway Moonstone – a pale, washed out lavender – seemed to fit perfectly for this “little” project… and I love Moonstones anyway with their milky, soft bluish glow, always reminding me of lunar light floating on water.

 

 

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Click for full size

But starting with the MTosh Pashmina I soon found that I didn’t really like how the pattern looked in this yarn – not really defined because of the twist in the yarn itself. And too bulky, as you can see in the “compare” picture: The upper yarn is MTosh Pashmina, the bigger knitted part below shows MTosh Merino Light, both in colorway Moonstone.

As I had MTosh Merino Light in the same colorway, I changed plans and tried with this yarn – much better, clear stitch definition, though much lighter too of course, so the scarf would get really “airy”.

 

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After two pattern repeats I started doubting myself… hoping I had enough stamina to finish knitting this. I really had to pay attention to the pattern – and this didn’t change until the end. As i’m not yet used to lace knitting, I made several mistakes with all the yarn-overs both on RS and WS, suddenly a stitch was missing or fell… on the other hand I really know now how to fix mistakes, like knitting back yarn-overs… ;)
Nevertheless, because of my fingering weight yarn, I calculated I’d have to repeat the pattern 24 times at least to reach the required length of 120cm (47.2 inch).. ugh… ;)

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Modifications I made were:

  • No provisional cast on because I didn’t know yet if I wanted to wear it just as scarf or join to a cowl. In retrospect I would not do this again, as sewing the scarf together causes a visible joint.
  • After casting on, I purled one row to have some stitches to start from. From RS, it shows as “knit-stitches” and doesn’t really show up. Should be easy to hide afterwards. Retrospect: Not as easy as I thought. Don’t do this.
  • I omitted the Sl1 stitches – this causes huge stitches at the border in this thin yarn. Knit them instead, doesn’t matter much except you get a little knot at the border instead of the huge slipped stitch.

It turned to be a very wearable cowl, more like a fashion accessory than for warmth of course. I liked the challenge to knit this, but it wasn’t exactly recreational for me and also didn’t “travel across my needles effortlessly like a gypsy traveling from town to town.”…. ;) … but I’m not an expert lace knitter, so my fault, the pattern is flawless.

And yes, I blocked every single one of those little picots! :D

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