Today’s Cowl

Hand-Knit Cowl

If you read a lot of historical novels and the like, you probably think of hooded monks when you hear the word cowl. Why would anyone want to wear one these days when hoodies (which, by the way, I cannot comfortably wear to save my life) are so easy to find?

That’s not what I’m talking about, here.

Today, a cowl can just as easily refer to a knitted tube, worn around the neck like some cross between a fluffy necklace and a scarf  but without the tails. Some cowls–often called clouds and knitted in wonderfully fuzzy mohair for a nebulous effect–are long enough to pull over the head like a hood and keep the ears warm and toasty.

My version was a product of a single skein of camel-colored wool found at Tuesday Morning while shopping for new bath mats and some time on my hands post-move. I’d been itching for a simple knitting project to keep my hands busy and, after flipping through my copy of One-Skein Wonders I settled on the Sofia Cowl. It was a simple lace pattern that kept my hands busy a few nights and gave that awesome sense of instant gratification that good, quick knitting projects always do.

How to Wear a Scarf with no Tails

Pretty much any way you want to.

Wait, not exactly what you were expecting? Okay, I can do a little better than that.

Sofia Cowl Worn 3 Ways
Sofia Cowl, 3 ways

After playing around with my newest accessory, I came up with several variations: these were my top 3:

  1. Fold the back of the cowl down, doubling the warming layers around the nape of your neck, and pouf out the front to fullness. This looks great peeking out of a coat or v-neck sweater–a great way to transition from Fall to Winter and Winter to Spring when you may not need full-on bundling but a little extra warmth wouldn’t hurt.
  2. A fun, slouchy, casual look can be achieved by twisting the tube inside itself a few good turns to create a continuous spiral effect. Try it against a contrasting turtleneck or just on it’s own as a statement accessory.
  3. My favorite look is to arrange it high in the back and fold the edges over at the neck, securing with a pin or clip (like the large French twist clip in the photo–think outside the brooch!). This looks so nice and tailored that it can work as a wardrobe element, not just a cold-weather protector.

If You Love Something, Set it Free!

Hand-Knit Cowl
Enter to Win!

I wanted to knit something and I did. Problem is, I live in Florida where it doesn’t really stay that cold. For pity’s sake, we were the only state in the Union without snow on the ground this past week–this is not an item that’s going to get a lot of use in my neck (hah!) of the woods.

So…. Hows about I offer up to one lucky reader?

If you’d like a chance to win this hand-knit accessory, there’s one simple rule:

Leave a comment on this post.

See? I told you it was simple!

Now, if you’d like an additional chance to win, you can follow the blog via RSS or e-mail. There are links for both options at the top of the far-right side-bar. After you subscribe using the method of your choice (or if you already do!) leave a separate comment on this post for 1 additional entry.

That’s all there is to it.

Cowl Details:

  • Dimensions: Approximately 27″ around, 13.5″ wide (when flat), and 7″ high with quite a bit of stretch.
  • Knit out of “Deluxe Worsted” 100% Wool, Made in Turkey, Imported by Universal Yarn Inc (Concord, NC)
  • Suggested Care: Hand wash in 85 degree F (30 degree C) water

Comment-entries will be accepted until 5pm EST, Wednesday, January 26, 2011, and the winner will be announced the following day.

~~~oOo~~~

Don’t forget to leave those comments! This post takes care of our Art of Dressing discussion. Our next art on the horizon? Jewelry!

26 thoughts on “Today’s Cowl

  1. karen@strictlysimplestyle says:

    I don’t know the first thing about knitting, but these look really toasty for cold winter days.

    1. Scraps says:

      Bummer! Granted, I can only wear them if they’re not very tight against my throat–just like I can’t stand t-shirts or choker necklaces.

    1. Scraps says:

      And it’s totally my fault! I’m convinced I repel snow, which is why I’ve never ever seen snow in person. On the ground snow, that is, supposed flakes have dropped here and there but it’s just not the same!

  2. Jeannie says:

    This is lovely, even my color! I think I could almost get away with this…I will cross my fingers and toes and eyes until you pick your winner!

  3. Mellisa says:

    Winter is about to arrive in the heartland of USA and this would look fabulous with my new coat!

  4. Melody says:

    Don’t enter me in your drawing as I knit too and have an overabundance of such, but I certainly want to compliment you on the beautiful even stitches and the absolutely lovely design. Great job!

    1. Scraps says:

      Thank you for the compliment! Knitting is just so soothing, I’m glad this piece will be going to someone who will use it rather than just hanging around my knitting bag.

    1. Scraps says:

      The amazing thing about knitting, I think, is that it’s really only 2 stitches. And one of those? Is just the back-side of the other. It’s all in how you combine them to make the patterns… just like life.

    1. Scraps says:

      Oh, I’m sure you can! I taught myself to knit from printed-out directions, in traffic on the way back to my office from the craft store (I work downtown so there were plenty of lights). After my first starter-scarf I moved straight on to a sweater from knitty.com–you can dooo iiiit!

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