Sunday, September 25, 2016

K'done: Boxing clever cowl

This is getting to be an annual thing, it would seem.

Pattern: Boxing clever cowl, by Susan Ashcroft
Yarn: madelinetosh tosh dk, in a one-of-a-kind colourway
Needles: 5 mm / US 8

We seem to have gotten into a routine of sorts - every year, we spend 10 days out on Vancouver Island with Mister's parents. Two years ago (2014), I knit a cowl, and found it to be a pretty perfect project for the trip. I had just come off the Tour de Sock, so the massive gauge change was welcome, and it zoomed along so much that it was executed in its entirety within the bounds of the trip - I cast on a day or two after we arrived, bound off and had all the ends (well, there were only two) woven in well before we were packing up to head home, without an all-knitting-all-the-time mentality. It was great. (For the record I also knit a pair of socks for my sister on that trip.) Last year, I took two cowl projects with me, and that worked well too, except I didn't do any Sister socks that time around, which was fine by me, but I felt a bit bad for my sister.

This year, I remembered the guilt from the no-Sister-socks of last year's plan, so I dialed down the cowling to just one, and knocked out a pair of socks on the trip as well. I actually came perilously close to being underyarned, only avoiding it by bringing along some yarn to start a pair of Poppers socks, which I suppose means I wasn't underyarned at all in the end - I was just this close to not bringing that second batch of sock yarn. I was gathering up my supplies the night before we left, and I put my cowl yarn and Sister sock yarn into a bag, and held it up to show Mister, and he eyed it and asked me if it would be enough. I believe my response was: I can't knit through all this in 10 days! He arced an eyebrow at me, and I sighed and grabbed the extra, thinking I wouldn't need it but better safe than sorry. (He got to do a bit of I-told-you-soing when I cast on with the Poppers sock yarn.)

This was a great little cowl to work up - easy to memorize knit-purl texture pattern, so once you get everything set up, you can just put the pattern away and chug along until it's time to bind off. Once again, I found the texture to be deeply satisfying to work up - again, I suspect it's a sort of palate-cleansing effect after all the varied intricacies of the socks of the Tour. According to my notes, I only spent about three days on it from start to finish, and I did do other things over the course of those three days besides eat, sleep, and knit. A nice achievement boost project.

I'm very pleased with how it turned out, but in the end, I'm not keeping it. As I was working on it, Mister's mother commented on it a few times, expressing admiration for the colour, and saying, Boy, I sure get lots of nice comments when I wear the one you made for me. (I made her a cowl for her birthday earlier this year. I never blogged it because I never got a good picture of it before giving it to her.) So I quietly asked Mister if I should set this cowl aside to be part of her Christmas present. He thought it would be a nice addition, so long as I wasn't going to be sad to see it go. Well. I must confess, I'm always a bit sad to have knitted up yarn leave my possession, but seeing the joy and appreciation in the recipient brings me much happiness and satisfaction. So it will be hers.

Tech specs: Chinese waitress CO, double chain BO. The skein had a knot in it, which I untied and then rejoined the strands using a Russian join.

Yup. There will be more summer getaway cowls.