Silver Threads

a knitting blog with occasional side trips

The triumph of stubbornness

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In reaction to Viajante, I have a compulsion to only work on small projects. Expect posts on shawlettes and cowls for a while, starting with this one! Tru Loves Bites, inspired by the TV series True Blood and designed by Kristen Ashbaugh Helmreich, caught my eye because it was a cowl that mimics the drape and coverage of a shawlette. I like shawlettes just fine, as you can tell from the number of them I’ve made, but I’ve been looking into cowls more because they stay put. Shawlettes have an annoying tendency to come undraped after a while and start trailing ends into what you’re working on. And cowls generally have better neck coverage. We’re into winter here now, no matter what the calendar says (it was 10º F/-12º C yesterday, instead of the normal 34º F/1º C), and I need all the help I can get.

My first attempt at this pattern was earlier this summer, when I needed a small project to work on during the state fair. I ended up frogging it a few rounds before the end, though. I’d run out of yarn, and even though I could have bought another hank and kept going, I just wasn’t happy with how the yarn was knitting up at the gauge called for. Now this is where the stubbornness kicked in. It’s not like there is a lack of cowl patterns in the world. As I write this, there are 18,883 knitting and crochet cowl patterns listed on Ravelry. But I couldn’t let this one go because I didn’t want to be defeated by it. The pattern had errors: I vowed to correct them. The pattern didn’t work at the yarn weight called for: I planned to use a heavier yarn.

Tru Loves Bites cowl

And lo, I have a cowl. I went with Haymarket, a worsted-weight yarn (100% Bluefaced Leicester wool) that is a smidgen itchier around the neck than Sportmate would’ve been, but is pretty darn soft in its own right. Besides, I wear turtlenecks all the time in winter, so there’s not much neck skin exposed in the first place. Despite being made out of a heavier yarn than called for, the cowl drapes just fine, and I figure it has to be warmer for all that. And given what the weather forecast looks like, I’ll be debuting it any day now (brr!).

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Tru Loves Bites
Yarn: Lorna’s Laces Haymarket
Color: Ogden
Needle: 4 (3.5 mm)

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2 thoughts on “The triumph of stubbornness

  1. Pretty! Looks great with that sweater and t-neck, too. My solution for shawl/shawettes that don’t want to stay in place:https://www.thegrommet.com/magnebutton-magnet-closure-accessory1

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    • Yes, I’m not sure it could’ve matched that sweater more perfectly if I’d tried to get them to coordinate! Those magnetic button-thingies look useful. Thanks for mentioning them. Most shawl pins I’ve seen have been too big and/or heavy for shawlettes.

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