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

You Want Lightning? I’ll Show you Lightning!

Dear Ann:
Having just posted 20 minutes ago, I am refreshed and energized and ready to post again! BLOGGING MAKE HULK STRONG! HULK HAVE OPINIONS! HULK SMASH HONEY COWL HERESIES!
Really, it’s just that somebody just asked a question in our comments on the previous post, about the Honey Cowl. If you think I am opinionated about Lance Armstrong, it’s nothing compared to my opinionatedness on the Honey Cowl. Here is the question:
“Oh Kay, guru of all that is the honey cowl, I seek your advice. After seeing your beautiful speciments. I want (need) to make one of my own, but I’ve read on Rav that some people are troubled by a faux-seam that is created by the pattern. I come to you for wise words on how to prevent a honey-cowl tragedy. –mellenknits”
I’ve been asked this question quite a few times, and I think there is some material on the issue on Ravelry, which unfortunately our lightning blog rulebook does not permit me to spend the afternoon finding.
OK, what is mellenknits talking about? What is this GODAWFUL SEAM that is deterring people from knitting the Honey Cowl? (Look away if you’re feeling delicate.)
honeycowlseam.jpg
YES. There is a line. This line is formed thus: the Honey Cowl stitch pattern is a two row pattern. One round is a plain knit round. On the other round, every other stitch is a purl, and between the purls, you slip a stitch purlwise with the yarn in front. At the beginning of each round, you switch between the knit row and the purl row, moving the yarn from back to front and from front to back. A tidy line forms at the precise spot where you do this.
Complaining, worrying, or fussing about this line, IN MY OPINION, is like complaining about the grout between mosaic tiles, the seams on a dress, the stitches in a boot, the nailholes in a piece of fine furniture, the staples in a book binding–AND OTHER NATURALLY OCCURRING MARKS OF HUMAN WORKMANSHIP.
I have seen only one piece of advice on how to eliminate this hideous seam. It involved not slipping the first or last stitch of the purl round. I tried that in my head (hey–I’m busy), and it didn’t seem to me like it would do anything but make the seam look different–it would still be visible. So why bother. Again, MY OPINION. If anyone has a perfectly seamless Honey Cowl to show me, I’d love to see it.
Friends, if you think about it, pretty much all of your clothing has seams in it. This is not a reason to avoid the Honey Cowl. IN MY OPINION.
Thank you, mellenknits for your fun question, which enabled me to indulge in all-capsing, which I quite enjoy. Please, dear readers, send more questions to make me yell.
EDITED TO ADD: OK. Maybe I was hasty. Maybe my 20 Honey Cowls have an unnecessary seam.
Deb says (in comments to the previous post) that I should cast on 1 extra stitch, and the seam melts away.
I’m going to try it. But I’m leaving this post up because (a) I had fun and (b) if it’s chastening I deserve, it’s chastening I’ll get. Speaking of humility and all that.
Love,
Kay

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47 Comments

47 Comments

  1. OK. Maybe I was hasty. Maybe my 20 Honey Cowls have an unnecessary seam.
    Deb says (in comments to post below) that I should cast on 1 extra stitch, and the seam melts away.
    I’m going to try it. But I’m leaving this post up because (a) it was fun and (b) if it’s chastening I deserve, it’s chastening I’ll get.

  2. COULD NOT AGREE WITH YOU MORE THAT SEEM NOT MATTER. SMASH.

  3. SEAM ALSO NOT MATTER.

  4. I’m glad I’m not the only one bothered by seams.

  5. If I may borrow an expression from my teenage son…You are made of win.

  6. That should read NOT bothered by seams. Glad I’m not the only one NOT bothered by seams. Yeesh. Guess I need some caffeine.

  7. “Complaining, worrying, or fussing about this line, IN MY OPINION, is like complaining about the grout between mosaic tiles, the seams on a dress, the stitches in a boot, the nailholes in a piece of fine furniture, the staples in a book binding–AND OTHER NATURALLY OCCURRING MARKS OF HUMAN WORKMANSHIP.”
    I love this, as I am much more a fan of the three-needle bind-off than the Kitchener stitch, in most knitting situations. IMHO, seamlessness’ primary function is for (mercifully short) sock toes. (and even that’s only if you are cuff-down sock knitter.)
    You keep shouting, Kay. Strong Opinions Good.

  8. Honey cowl don’t care!

  9. Hulk Kay might be best thing ever.

  10. I just choked on my coffee when I read, “Honey cowl don’t care!” Best. Comment. Evar!

  11. I CAN’T BELIEVE YOU PUT THAT DISGUSTING IMAGE ON OUR BLOG. WHAT ARE YOU THINKING?

  12. I have achieved the seamless Honey Cowl. I used two skeins of yarn. Use one for the slip stitch rows and use the other for the knit only rows. The only problems is you run out knit row yarn first because it uses more yarn than the slip stitch.

  13. You are too funny!

  14. I am thoroughly enjoying the lightening rounds, honey cowls and your OPINIONS.

  15. Sod that. I LOVE YOU AND YOUR OPINIONS.
    Love from Don’t Care, Get Over It. B x x x

  16. Perhaps “melt away” is a little dramatic. “Less noticeable” is probably more accurate.
    Now then, since I was referred to in a post here, I must go ready myself for the imminent fame.

  17. I love the lightning blogging, and I love the honey cowl, for all I’ve knit only two. They both have seamy lines, but who cares? They keep us warm and stylish, what more could you ask.

  18. I just love these daily bloggings! Really been admiring that new blankie.
    I am tempted with the Honey Cowl!

  19. Last year, I remember asking you about that “seam” but when the thing is knit up, it doesn’t show much. Guess I’ll have to try the extra stitch thing; but if you try if first, lightning round it for the rest of us?

  20. I was also especially delighted to read “Honey Cowl don’t care!”

  21. the above shade of green is the exact shade
    of green the flu turns one into overnight
    my uncle used to say if they look that close
    elizabeth they are just plain nosey
    it is not easy being green

  22. Also for mellenknits–I don’t recall why, but the gaptastic cowl is quite similar to the honey cowl (I’ve done both happily), but whatever the pattern difference is, no seam is visible. That said, I agree with the rest. Except in a bra, what is wrong with a seam!

  23. Can’t be seen from a trotting horse.
    (I know this is irrelevant. I just like the image.)

  24. If you’re at VKL this weekend, look for me … I’ll be the one knitting a honey cowl (madtosh dahlia).

  25. Yeah and I LIKE the seam.

  26. The solution is obvious: grow your hair and wear it long over the seam.

  27. I’m on Honey Cowl 5 or 6 (I’ve lost track and given most away), but the “seam” doesn’t bother me. I don’t think it is noticeable when finished and it looks kind of neat. That sounds weird, but oh well. Casting on a new honey cowl tomorrow! They go over big at the annual school fundraising auction.

  28. PLEASE, I have a Honey cowl question. Is the tension important in the honey cowl? Am I to leave the carried behind or in front yarn loose or tight?
    Thank you

  29. Love the Honey Cowl (mine and yours), couldn’t care less about the seam.
    Thanks for the encouragement about loud opinions in general.

  30. I haven’t yet knitted a Honey Cowl, but when I do it will have a SEAM! I love HULK KAY too. :)
    And the lightening blogging – it’s fab!

  31. Another solution: put buttons along the seam and it will look deliberate! HULK BUTTONS!

  32. Quite apart from all the seam discussion, I was quite tickled to see an “Avatar: The Last Airbender” quote for the title on this post! “Sozin’s Comet” is some of the best television I’ve seen in my 20 years!

  33. honey cowl don’t care — for president!

  34. This is a GREAT POST!

  35. Yup. Add or subtract one stitch and the seam is gone. I don’t mind the seam, but this one easy fix makes the issue…and seam…disappear.

  36. Hi, Kay, As a maker, gifted and wearer of many Honey Cowls, I think this whole thing is silly. Never have I or anyone else noticed the seam.
    BTW, I usually use a solid color for the borders and knit rows, and a hand-painted for the slip stitch rows. It looks beautiful and stretches out the hp for those of us who need to.
    PS ( I was at the Big apple luncheon and brought the swiffer cover. I love your downt to earth approach and patterns. This is supposed to be fun.)

  37. Honey cowl blocking
    Your finished Honey cowls all look FABULOUS while the single Honey cowl I made in MadTosh, tho beautiful in both its fiber and execution, falls far short of the loveliness of yours. What is your secret? Blocking wires? Little elves running back and forth on the top and bottom edges to prevent them from curling? Please spill! Thank you.

  38. I don’t enjoy knitting that much anymore (I defected to the dark side of granny squares) and I have no interest in cowls because I am a bigot but somehow this pattern seemed like the perfect thing to do with an awkward amount of poorly handspun scratchy blaze orange wool I’ve been hoarding for years. Holy crap, it’s the funnest thing to knit ever. Haven’t even finished the first one yet and I want to make a million of them!

  39. Too funny — “Look away if you’re feeling delicate.” You and Ann are the leaders of KnitStrong.

  40. 1) can’t agree more about the Armstrong/Oprah thing.It’s a wizard of oz letdown feeling. You still got the heart and courage but you feel so damn cheated.
    2) Can’t get fussed about the Honey seam. Although I am a lowly slacker with only 2 knit, neither’s seam seems to bother me.

  41. HA–just about fell off my chair. mellenknits is a friend of mine IRL–but I haven’t seen her in a while since we no longer work together (sigh, I miss working with a fellow knitter). I find it fun when you unexpectedly see something, like your friend mentioned on a blog. Plus, I’ve recently started a honey cowl, after pondering making one for ages and ages (how long have you been writing about honey cowls now). This seam she mentions is of no matter to me. I’ve made so many mistakes on this baby, the seam is the last thing you would notice. Seems as though the easier the pattern, the more likely I am to make a mistake. But honestly, I’m pretty sure no one will notice, not even me, once it is snuggled around my neck. Thanks for the speed blogging–you have inspired me to think about getting back into mine.

  42. Loving the lightning blogging – so glad to see regular posts from the Mason-Dixon ladies!
    But I have a confession to make – I tried to make a honey cowl on vacation and just could not do it. I wanted the longer one, and the 220-stitch rows seemed interminably long. I feel like a failure, especially given that you and Ann churn them out like factory workers (minus the deplorable working conditions, I hope). It is entirely possible that I was getting bad honey cowl karma because I have yet to finish my other knitting project – your log cabin blanket created as a fundraiser for the Japanese earthquake relief. I have 18 squares that are just waiting to be put together, but I am intimidated by the thought of all of that picking up of stitches and trying to create nice even strips….let’s not even talk about the applied i-cord.

  43. Loving the lightning blogging – so glad to see regular posts from the Mason-Dixon ladies!
    But I have a confession to make – I tried to make a honey cowl on vacation and just could not do it. I wanted the longer one, and the 220-stitch rows seemed interminably long. I feel like a failure, especially given that you and Ann churn them out like factory workers (minus the deplorable working conditions, I hope). It is entirely possible that I was getting bad honey cowl karma because I have yet to finish my other knitting project – your log cabin blanket created as a fundraiser for the Japanese earthquake relief. I have 18 squares that are just waiting to be put together, but I am intimidated by the thought of all of that picking up of stitches and trying to create nice even strips….let’s not even talk about the applied i-cord.

  44. Mine has that kind of seam line, and it doesn’t bother me at all. Of course, if it doesn’t appear at all with the inclusion of an additional stitch (an odd number of stitches), then I don’t see any reason not to make it go away either. I’ll have to check. And by check I mean make another honey cowl.

  45. I’m going on a quick trip soon and Honey Cowl may be my travel knitting. Not that I know how much knitting I’ll get done with a baby…

  46. I love this post — because I embraced the seam, even as I tried to imagine a way out of it — and now, I have to try another honey to try out Deb’s suggestion. It’s ALL good!

  47. I’ll add to the chorus: loved this post.