Is Starshower the new Honey Cowl? Only time will tell (but it looks good).

The Shock of the New

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Dear Ann,
I hate football. At a tender age, I watched a lot of midget football practice and could not comprehend why none of the grownups seemed to notice the brutality–physical and spiritual– that I found so upsetting. That’s my version of events and maybe not my brother’s, but the memories stuck with me as a permanent aversion. (I love Friday Night Lights. I contain multitudes.) (I look forward to your lettters.)
But I love commercials, so I had the Super Bowl and Twitter on my screens last night. Obviously a knitportunity of a night, if ever there was one. But alas I had just cast off my most recent Honey Cowl. So I cast on the Chevron Scarf from the Scarves, Shrugs & Shawls book that I mentioned in the post below. My yarn: remnants of Madelinetosh Merino DK and other yarns that I’d used for Honey Cowls of the Past.
People want to know: why do I have any remnants? Isn’t the Honey Cowl a “knit until you run out of yarn” kind of pattern? Yes it is. But for quite a few of my Honey Cowls, I wanted a thicker wad of wool around the neck, for warmth in the Northeast and also for style. Big woman + little cowl is not as attractive a proportion as big woman + generous cowl. But using all of the third skein seemed like too much of a good thing, so generally I have stopped halfway through a third skein, at around the 500 yard total mark. Leaving me with remnants. Glorious remnants.
Not enough remnants that I didn’t have to go back to Knitty City for an extra hank of a Madtosh DK neutral, this time in French Grey. Sometimes you gotta buy yarn to reduce stash.
Wheeee! It has been a while since I’ve feathered-and-fanned, and I’m really enjoying it. My one complaint is that if you leave out one k2tog or yo in a row that is 427 stitches long, it takes a while to find it. I am just saying.
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That Honey Cowl in the back is made from a single skein of Neighborhood Fiber Co. Studio Worsted, in the shade Thomas Circle. It’s slightly on the skinny side, but it’s for a slip of a girl, so I’m being consistent in my logic.
Today was a day for watching Mayor Koch’s funeral on TV while knitting and pattern-writing. I do love a good funeral. Not to brag on my chosen people, but Jewish funerals are wonderful to me because the ritual component is minimal in comparison to the time devoted to remembering the person who is so much on everyone’s mind. It was a good one.
Happy Monday!
Love,
Kay

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38 Comments

38 Comments

  1. stitch markers! when i’m doing something that makes it tricky to find/fix mistakes, i put a stitch marker between repeats – that way you know which repeat went wrong, since it will have +/- a stitch or two.

  2. That’s how I do it, but without the markers. The repeats are 6 stitches/11 stitches so a mistake in one of them is easy to spot, you just have to look at a lot of repeats due to the length of rows.

  3. Confession: I used to take a book with me when I couldn’t get out of going to a football game. I just always thought it was So Terminally Boring….

  4. I like football. I don’t know why. It is certainly better than watching wrestling, another sad remnant from my childhood. I watched the ads last night with horror. Some of them were so terrible and made my angry feminist mind rage. The good ones I don’t feel really made up for the bad ones whether poor execution or crappy content (GD.com was one of the worst).

  5. I despise football as anyone who gets within ten feet of me knows. I do, however, watch it whenever Son 2 is into it, because he gives excellent color commentary. And I watch the Super Bowl for the ads, of course, though this year they were pretty dreadful. And knitting!
    BEYONCE FOR PRESIDENT. How can she pull off all that bootylicious stuff yet still look so wholesome?

  6. Beyonce gifs. My faves are the Destiny’s Child gals flying up out of the floor.
    http://www.vulture.com/2013/02/beyoncs-halftime-performance-in-11-gifs.html

  7. ‘You have to buy to reduce stash’. That’s YOUR excuse, Missy!
    Was there some sort of peculiar rugby-esq game on your TV last night then? I’d never have known… Here we had Man City v. Liverpool. And no Beyonce. B x x

  8. I want my funeral to be short on ceremony and long on laughter. I’ve told husband that the first song to be played is Elton John’s The Bitch is Back. I am not really a bitch, but it does set the tone. I want lots of funny stories, laughter, tear of laughter and not of sorry, great food, dancing, kids running around, and chinese food as some of the offerings. I want to hear that Parrot guy, from Florida, on a turn table, great nosh, and maybe the weather should be warm so that people can be running in and out the house with water balloons. Yup that’s what I want for my send off!

  9. “Sometimes you gotta buy yarn to reduce stash.”
    That needs to be on a T -shirt.

  10. Big woman + little cowl made me snort. I’m with you on funerals, but strangely do like football.

  11. With all due respect to Patty (who can have any kind of funeral or memorial service she wants), I have to say that it’s not fair to expect people to laugh and tell silly stories exclusively at your funeral, because you know what? They will be sad. I say this from a lot of experience conducting memorial services in the Unitarian Universalist congregation I served for a long time.
    Of course it’s great when people tell stories and everyone laughs, but let’s let them be sad as well. After all, they loved you and now you’re gone. That is not an occasion for laughter.
    And I agree with Kay — Jewish funerals are great because they are personal. So are UU funerals. I’ve had many people tell me that a service I conducted was the best funeral they’ve ever been to because it was about the actual person and not just how we should all get ready for heaven.

  12. I spent last night knitting my way through my first Honey cowl. As I am only just over 5’4″ (And really anxious to have a FO–our puppy (ironically named Honey) has brought my evening knitting tto a screeching halt) I am contemplating an early bind off. I was curious as to the measurements of your narrower one.

  13. Funny… I just dragged out my copy of
    THE SHOCK OF THE NEW to read it again…

  14. See, my Honey Cowls so far have left me with some serious remnantage because I’m afraid that otherwise I’ll run out before I get through the three knit rows and binding off. I live in fear of being halfway through the binding off and then there’s no more yarn. I have anxiety! I think for my next one I’ll do the beginning and ending knit rows in a different color to prevent this terror.

  15. “Sometimes you gotta buy yarn to reduce stash.” I think a lot of your readers are going to lock onto that statement. And why? Because it is true. Why more people don’t understand the true-ness of this statement…now that’s the mystery.
    Cannot wait to see this wavyknit draped over the dog statue. It will highlight his playful, no-sleds-today side.

  16. Cookie:
    THE DOCTOR IS IN. Here’s how I resolved my anxiety about not having enough yarn left for the bindoff–I get pretty close, probably much closer than you do (or closer than I did before this BLAZE OF INSIGHT), then I bind off, knowing that if I run Out of yarn, I will only have to pull back a few rounds and can start over knowing–ABSOLUTELY–that I’ll have enough to bind off. This seems to me to be a better solution because it maximizes my cowl size, minimizes my wastage, and in the worst case, I just get to knit 5 rounds again.
    You’re welcome! Feel free to disregard, but think about it.
    MEG EVANS: The recently completed cowl is about 7 inches wide.
    xo Kay

  17. Love the new scarf! Can hardly wait for the book to come out.
    Hate football! But…… My son played in grade school & high school. It interfered with our family dinners and we won’t go into the smells! But it was the BEST thing for him! He gained confidence & made lifelong friends. He was always a little shy but FB brought him out of that. So I guess it’s a love/hate situation.

  18. Woo hoo! I’m at almost 8 inches! This short girl is having a binding off party tonight!

  19. Count me in, Kay, as another football hater. I could never figure out why boys and men want to play a game where you’re tackled, slammed into, piled up on, and get shod feet in your face! Besides, the game is boring as hell. I watch the Superbowl ads online after the game is over.
    I’ve only attended one Jewish funeral, and the deceased person’s husband got up and gave what amounted to a 20-minute standup comic routine. My Methodist self was unprepared for that. We have some humor in our funeral services, but this was way over the top. I had wondered if all Jewish funeral services were like that.

  20. Slightly unrelated Honey Cowl question: what method do you use to cast on 220 stitches? I just did a lazy gauge calculation and need to cast on 300 or so stitches. I almost always use the long tail cast on. But can’t risk casting on so many and running out of long tail before I’m done!

  21. Candice, take 2 strands of your yarn, either from the inside & outside of a center-pull ball, or from 2 skeins of yarn. Make a slip knot. Now use these 2 strands to work your long-tail cast-on– you won’t run out! (Don’t count the slip knot, undo when you’re done casting on.)
    I got this trick from Annie Modesitt. It’s BRILLIANT for this situation.
    Kay

  22. Is that a Fussy Cuts in the background? (Love your photos. Wish I could get colors right in photos.)

  23. Is that a Fussy Cuts in the background? (Love your photos. Wish I could get colors right in photos.)

  24. Is that a Fussy Cuts in the background? (Love your photos. Wish I could get colors right in photos.)

  25. Is that a Fussy Cuts in the background? (Love your photos. Wish I could get colors right in photos.)

  26. So sorry. Using an iPad. Not using it well. Will go knit now.

  27. So here’s what I’m doing on my current honeycowl: Knit the first ball of yarn, at towards the end weave in a piece of scrap yarn. Now I can measure how far a ball of yarn takes me in this pattern. So for this honeycowl, about 2″ into the 3rd ball of yarn I’ll be starting my 3 rows of knit rows. In theory, it should work. In theory.
    And as for Sunday’s football- haven’t you people heard of Downton Abbey?

  28. ‘Sometimes you gotta buy yarn to reduce stash.’
    Thank you for the above statement (which is so true) – it will be used to justify my next trip to the local yarn shop for many skeins of ‘neutral’ yarn.

  29. I just wanted to thank both of you for the advent of your 15 minute blogging campaign. It’s always a bright spot in my day to see what’s new at Mason Dixon.

  30. My only feather & fan was a crib quilt for a DOLL. Not exactly big time knitting. But I hated it so much I’ve never even thought about doing anything feathery or fanny again. I don’t understand why I disliked it so much because I usually love all things about knitting. Maybe I should be more open minded and try again. You are very convincing.

  31. Never was a fan of Feather and Fan, but they look nice! And I see a really interesting blanket underneath that picture. What is it?
    Ingenious idea for casting on with the double strand!

  32. The interesting blanket is my version of Fussy Cuts; many beautiful versions over on Ravelry. It is never leaving my possession; my favorite blanket.
    Pam! Brilliant! What I’d do to further refine this system is to count how many slip-stitch rows you have at the yarn-marker, then knit that many again (or one fewer to be safe) before beginning the stockinette edge & bindoff.
    KNITTERS: SOLVING PROBLEMS EVERY DAY.
    Kay

  33. I am so loving your blog posts – it is so good to have you back on the web. It makes my day!
    Thanks

  34. The chevron scarf is going to be so pretty!
    I just finished knitting a chevron baby blanket.
    http://blog.knitnicoleknit.ca/2013/02/some-finished-projects-baby-blanket-and.html
    I’d say it looks wonderful. And there are at least a half dozen times where I missed an increase or a decrease and didn’t notice until two rows later when my count didn’t add up. My only suggestion is this: fudge it. Every single time it happened, I just skipped whatever was supposed to happen where the number didn’t work out right, and the next row, my count was just fine. I wouldn’t suggest doing it on every row, but I wouldn’t worry about it too much.
    Besides, it will all block out in the end :)

  35. I’m going to take deep breath and knit to the very limit of my squeamish knitting anxiety for the Honey Cowl I have going on right now, Dr. Kay! I’ve started using the Russian bind-off that I usually reserve for k1p1 sock ribbing for everything, because I find it rips out better in case of an oops. For me, there will always be an oops. Thanks for the prescription of CONFIDENCE.

  36. I just knitted my way through the Celebration of Life of a dear friend’s beloved husband. (Beloved by his wife and many many others, but sadly not someone that I knew very well.) I think that Kristy—herself a spinner, knitter, weaver, dyer, book- and basket-maker—understood.

  37. Love the chevron scarf! I only wish I didn’t have to purchse an entire book in order to get the pattern. Perhaps I can suggest the local library needs it!

  38. how on earth have you two missed this cowl http://madelinetosh.com/store/index.php/patterns/brick-road-cowl.html It is your dishcloth pattern in the round and reversable….I would think you would gave gone all gaga about this one.
    We certainly did!