Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Bust The Stash: Finished Object 11 - Foolproof Cowl

I am exceedingly pleased with my finished Foolproof Cowl:

Everyone should make one!

Here's one side:

And here's the other:

For what it's worth, this is by no means my best work, technically (there are a couple of small errors which I won't point out because, really, no one's going to notice them). I had to go off road with the Inspriation instruction directions. Note: There are 2 versions of directions for this cowl - Inspiration (which is essentially a pattern that tells you what to do) and Free Spirit (which gives guidelines and assumes you'll create your own striping pattern). I didn't have enough yarn to do the full-on Inspiration version so I mixed and matched. As a result, my striping pattern is pretty whack - but I finished up a maximum amount of yarn and gain a maximum amount of cowl length.

At 400ish yards of Loft yarn, this is just long enough to wrap around the neck twice. I'd definitely use 500-600 yards on my next version. Happily, the size is adjustable to suit what yarn you've got to work with.

I'm of two minds about using woolen-spun yarn, such as Brooklyn Tweed, for this project. It produces a more rustic end result, and that result is warmer than a worsted-spun one. It's less inclined to pill, it gains structure and strength in blocking. Furthermore, Brooklyn Tweed yarn, for all of its rusticness, is still very soft (and springy, and "kinky"). But... You need a light touch to knit with this stuff - it has basically no twist and it likes to break if you're even a smidge too tight. I've discovered that individual skeins can be radically different. Some contain yarn that's quite robust and even, others contain yarn that's brittle and uneven. I can knit with either because I'm a loose knitter with even tension, but I can see how this yarn won't work for everyone. Never have I seen more polarizing comments on Ravelry than when it comes to the quality of BT Loft. You either love it or hate it. I'd say more people hate it than love it, but the lovers are HARDCORE.

I don't think I'll run out soon to purchase BT yarn again, though I'd welcome an opportunity to use it in the future - particularly one of the weights I've not tried. As of now, I've only used Loft (the fingering weight).

I am totally enamoured of Brooklyn Tweed, the concept, and I think that many of the pattern designs are excellent, but I prefer a worsted-spun yarn - if one more rustic than my initial knitting tastes belied. Still, I urge everyone to give it a go (and Quince and Co, for that matter). Neither thrills me to the extent that Madeline Tosh does, but they're lovely, durable American-grown yarns that can be purchased online (or in store, in some instances) at a reasonable price.

What do you think of my Foolproof? Have you made this?


  1. Cool! Those colors will suit you.

  2. I'm not surprised you're pleased with this. It's very subtle and very chic. The striping looks intentional rather than "I'm making this up as I go along before I run out of yarn!". Lovely!