Monday, December 10, 2012

UpCountry Cowl - a free pattern

If you're thinking about how to solve a last-minute gift problem, or the weather is suddenly very cold and you need a cowl yourself, or you are swimming in Twisted Fiber Art's delicious Duchess yarn, then boy do I have a present for you:

I finished my warm winter cowl, and I love it so much I wanted to share the pattern with you guys.

The whole cowl thing has been a slow transition for me.  I mean, don't scarves work just fine on their own?  And how do you wear a cowl, anyway, so that it's functional and not just a decorative giant wrapped accessory on top of your coat?   So many confusions.

The fact is, a cowl slung over your head and dropped down like a necklace does an amazing job of keeping your neck warm and, consequently, an awful lot of the rest of you. Who knew?  And living in an uninsulated house as I do, this is a pretty big appeal even indoors.  Still, a loose-fitting super soft necklace cowl doesn't face down brisk winter winds.  I needed something that would hug my neck, stay in place, and cover my chin if I need it to.

And that's where the UpCountry Cowl comes in.

This cowl is designed to fit snugly and cover some serious neck territory.  Super-elastic ribbing at the top and bottom of the cowl hold it in place on your chin even if you put it on upside down.  A checkerboard stitch inclines the fabric to fold itself, accordian-style, into your coat collar if you pull it down a bit.

And the texture is not just fun to knit - it looks great in Twisted's self-striping yarn.

I've included instructions for two sizes: 'mine' and 'bigger' to cover most of your gift knitting needs.  You can get either one out of a single skein of Duchess.

And... yes, I did try the cowl on as a hat, and it's awesome, so now I'm knitting up a hat sample and I'll be posting that pattern as a second freebie later this week or early next.  We've been through a lot this year so you deserve more than one present, heh.

(the cowl also makes a great-looking, super-warm headband when it's folded in two or three layers.  I might try that for skating this winter.)

UpCountry Cowl


Twisted Fiber Art Duchess Self-Striping yarn (100% superwash merino wool, 240 yards, 100g), 1 skein

4.0mm 16” circular or double point needles, or size to obtain gauge

stitch marker

darning needle


20 sts, 28 rows = 4” in stocking stitch, after blocking

Finished Dimensions

S (M): 18 (19.5)” circumference, 8.75” long. Shown in size Small.

Level of Difficulty
Easy: stitches include knit, purl, and knit through back loop.  Cowl is worked on a circular needle and cast off without decreases.


Trish said...

Love it, Mary! I'm adding it to my queue...

Mary Keenan said...

I'm going to have to knit it again myself... I haven't taken mine off all day ;^)

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the free patterns. I'm anxious to try the hat and matching cowl.