Sunday, 8 July 2007

Welsh Hiking Scarf

Pattern: Hello Yarn Irish Hiking Scarf
Yarn: RYC Cashsoft DK, colourway 521 'Opulence', 8 balls knit double, from Liberty
Needles: 4mm, 60 cm Addi circ
Dimensions: 216 cm x 11.5 cm washed (I didn't block it as such, and forgot to measure it before washing, but from the swatch and memory I don't think it grew much). I could probably have got at least another 10 cm from the last two balls, but was modelling it on a favourite scarf and I'm happy with it this length.
Modifications: I cast on 36 stitches and replaced all the k2 except the first and last with kfb; for the last row I knit the kfb stitches together. I take no credit for these mods whatsoever. I emailed Adrian to ask which cast-off she had used as I wasn't very happy with the way the top and bottom of my swatches had splayed out, and she suggested these increase and decrease rows. I also cast off in pattern after the sixth row of the repeat to make the ends of the scarf symmetrical.
Thoughts: this is a great pattern. It's really simple but effective, and as you all probably already know, cables rule. Plus, I really like the two stich garter stich edging, which frames the cables hansomely and gives a nice flat edge without being too obtrusive. The yarn is beatifully, beautifully soft and was a real treat to knit with, although I'm a bit worried about how it will hold up. It was already starting to pill after only a few days accompanying me on public transport, and I had to stop D from patting it in order to avoid having a felted scarf before it was even off the needles! Apparently it's machine washable but I'm not sure I'd take the risk. It's a bit too splitty to be perfect cabling material, particularly knitting with two strands held double, but I like the stitch definition so I'd happily do it again! I also found three knots in the eight balls I used, which isn't the end of the world - and at least both sides of the knot were from the same dyelot! - but for something that expensive it seems a bit cheeky. Knitting a scarf from eight balls of the stuff was truly extravagant (opulent, in fact!), but D and I spent ages searching for the right colour and as it was the first thing I've knit him I wanted it to be perfect. And I can't think of any other way I'd rather spend my money.

So far the scarf has spent most of its existence in a drawer waiting for winter, but luckily I thought of taking it to the seaside and it turned out to be the perfect addition to a (Cardiff Blues) rugby shirt at the end of a brisk, breezy, beautiful day at Aldeburgh. A cherished scarf for a very happy day.


Rachel said...

Lovely scarf! And I think that's so sweet how you wanted to first thing you made for D to be perfect, aww. I remember having the same sentiments for the first thing I knit for J (a hat), but I don't think he saw it the same way as I dragged him into a huge yarn store and made him look at every single skein of yarn in there and wouldn't believe him when he insisted that any yarn would be fine as long as he could just leave the store.

elli said...

Beautiful! There's nothing better than knitting something lovely for your hunny. I love the pebbley beach pictures too!

Marie said...

How beautiful! That is my favorite colorway of the DK Cashsoft. Definitely a most special and wonderful first knitted present, especially if D finds it to be the perfect color! I subjected I. to two yarn shops and hours of yarn shifting but never did find the perfect colors for his hat (before he ran out of patience, that it). :P
The beach looks so lovely, by the way!

Daphne said...

It's lovely and mmmmmmm doubled cashsoft. Now that you mention it, I have found plenty of knots in balls of cashsoft--perhaps Rowan has trouble with the great yardage. I don't mind too much in most cases... so long as the dye lot doesn't change, I suppose. :)

Julia said...

Yay! A great man scarf! Nice color, too =)