An experiment. I think it worked out pretty well.
Pattern: Beithe, by Susanna IC
Yarn: Madelinetosh Tosh Sock, in Wren
Needles: 4.5 mm / US 7
As you can plainly see from that shot there, this is not the shawl the pattern promises. I had started to wonder what it might be like to make a cowl that wasn't a straight-up tube - one that uses short rows to add length to one area but not the whole thing. (I have had more thoughts on that, but more on that later. Another experiment is blocking as I type.) Since this shawl is already shaped using short rows, I thought it might be interesting to try it out, but join to work in the round instead of knitting it flat to convert it into a cowl.
I did alter the number of stitches I cast on - otherwise it would have been huge! I cast on 191 stitches, worked the lace/cable chart, then when I got to the short rows, I had a problem - the shawl has you close the gaps left by the short rows using decreases, but doing that with this cowl made the thing rather funnely. So I undid my short rows and started that bit again using the shadow wrap technique to close the gaps. No more funnel effect. In an effort to use more of my precious yarn, I kept working in plain stockinette once all the shaping was done. At the time, I wondered if I should find some lace motif to smack in along the top before the top edge. As it is, I think it looks a bit odd when it's laid out on the floor there like that, but I like the look when it's worn.
Still, something to keep in mind for future experiments.
Some tech specs: I used the Chinese Waitress cast on, and I added two extra rounds of seed stitch before doing the I-cord bind off. That, by the way, is a super firm bind off! I like it - a very tidy finish - but don't use it on anything that needs lateral stretch!
I really like Tosh Sock. The colours are incredible, and the yarn just feels really good in the hands. I've now used up two skeins of my mini-stash of Tosh Sock, but I'm not screaming for more, because I may have picked up some Tosh DK a little while back, and on Monday a box was placed on my front doorstep that contained some Pashmina - some sweater-sized batches, two for me, three for my sister. Plus there's a bit of Tosh Vintage kicking about in the stash too. I have plenty of Madelinetosh yarn to keep me happy for a while.
At least, that's what I'm telling myself.