Starshower Cowl – FA 2017.02

Winter is hanging on with a tight grasp. A local news station reported that Seattle had only three “mild sunny days” since October. We’ve had a few more partly sunny days, but that gray sogginess continues to drain my energy.

One upside to the gloom is it gives me more time to wear my hand-knit accessories. And I might have a new favorite. Unlike my scarves and shawls which always need adjustments, even when pinned or knotted in place, this cowl stays in place and is low-profile.

Bonus: it keeps my shoulders warm too.

The Starshower pattern is designed and sold by Hilary Smith Callis, available for $5 on Ravelry.

I found this pattern when I was searching for projects that used 400 yards of fingerling yarn. I like this final product far more than forager cardigan that I bought the yarn for originally.

The yarn is Knit Picks Gloss Fingering, in Fedora. (What a great color name for an archaeologist!) This yarn is 70% merino wool and 30% silk.

Techniques I learned

Wrapping stitches at the end of a row in the round – I’d never done this before. Most of the pattern is worked on the wrong side, and it is only when knitting the garter and stockinette rows in between the main pattern that you works on the right side.

I finally pushed myself to learn the shockingly easy “Russian join” because this lace design wasn’t going to conceal my usual join method. I plan to use this technique again and again.

Continue in stockinette” is easy to misinterpret…and I did. I thought it meant continue from the last row to be stockinette. Now I realize that I didn’t pay attention to right side and wrong side of the work. In the future I will know that the right side of stockinette needs to be the smooth side. Not in relation to the last row.

Oh well. I didn’t realize this until the piece was worked in the round and the pattern instructions changed to clarify purl vs knit rows. This mistake is only visible at the very top of the neckline, which is meant to bunch anyway.

It’s place in my wardrobe

I plan to wear this with fitted and semi-fitted knit tops and dresses and over sleeveless woven tops. This stems from the romantic historian, where knitwear accessories provide needed protection against drafty libraries.

I see it pairing well with both the Wren and Adelaide dresses, providing some warmth on spring and summer mornings.

It also can add texture and variation to otherwise boringly smooth jersey fabrics.

The pattern design is yarn are sleek enough to  work as a warmth layer to a fancier dress.



Side note:

I like the numbering system that Karen of Fringe Association uses for her finished projects. I know that her FO probably means “Finished Object” but I figured that FA = Fabric Alchemist. 🙂 I’m going to see if this helps me keep track of my 2017 completions. I can’t decide if I want to include the codes in my blog post titles.

Did you knit anything this winter? Do you like scarves, shawls, or cowls more?


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