Friday, December 22, 2006

free pattern friday: quickie cowl

Just three more knitting days until Christmas... Need a lightning-quick last-minute gift? Break into your stash and find just one skein of something soft and chunky, and you'll have this little cowl wrapped and waiting under the tree come Christmas morning.

The cowl can be worn as a scarf or a headband. The modified lace rib looks a little fancy but is easy and quick to knit. Now, make yourself a cup of hot chocolate and get to work - time is running out!

size: one size.

One skein Misti Alpaca Chunky (109 yards/100g), shown in color #3317. About 100 yards of any chunky-weight yarn will do - just make sure it's very soft!
US size 10.5 needles
Tapestry needle

3.5 st/in over stockinette stitch

modified lace rib
Row 1 and all WS rows: *K2, P3. Repeat from * to end. K2.
Row 2 (RS): P2. *K1, YO, K2tog, P2. Repeat from * to end.
Row 4: P2. *K3, P2. Repeat from * to end.
Repeat these four rows.

knit the cowl
The outer edges are made with a 3-stitch border of garter st (K every row), slipping the first stitch of every row with the yarn held in front to create a nice, clean edge.

CO 38.
First row: K3. Begin lace rib patt, knitting until 3 st remain. K to end.
Next row: Slip one wyif, K2. Knit in patt until 3 st remain. K to end.
Next row: Slip one wyif, K2. Knit in patt until 3 st remain. K to end.

Continue knitting in this manner until the cowl measures about 19 inches long, ending on a WS row. BO all st loosely.


Now use your tapestry needle to sew the two ends together using mattress stitch. Weave in loose ends. The structure is basically a very short scarf with the ends sewn together to create a tube that can be pulled on over the head.

Have another cup of hot chocolate - you're done!

Got a question about this pattern, or need a little help? Check out the new help page.

important notice: This is a free pattern and you are welcome to use it for all the non-commercial purposes you like. However, you may not reproduce this pattern to sell, and you may not sell what you make with it. You may donate what you make with it to charity, and you may use it for charity fundraisers only if 100% of the proceeds are donated to the charity (and by charity I don't mean your kid's college fund). Thanks for understanding!


  1. Love it! And so happy to have been a witness to its genesis!

  2. Ms. Pea! That is soooo purdy! I love your "fridays"! Just another reason to love the day! Hope your Christmas was a good one, and just in case the new blogger forgets my name,

  3. Ohh I have to make this. I have some pink super soft baby alpaca CraftPirate sent me and i think this is the project for it.

    Now if i could just be one of those knitters that starts sevral projects at once...

  4. This pattern works up so pretty. Thanks I needed a quick diversion pattern from the larger projects I'm working on.

  5. I love this pattern, I made it with Bernat cashmere yarn with 5mm needles it is very pretty.

    Thank you and congratulations for your blog.

  6. Thanks for the pattern! I just finished one for my cousin--I'm sure she'll love it!

  7. Drat...I would loveee to make this! I tried it last night, and I failed miserably. Help!!!

  8. Thank you for a terrific pattern, just about finished and I only started it this evening! ;-)

  9. I love this pattern and I have a skein of Misti Alpaca waiting. But I can't figure out the instructions: Row 1 "k2, p3... end k2." But, First row: k3, begin patt... until THREE st remain?
    Please help!

  10. your pattern looks purdy;i can't wait to knit one myself but... i just wish i knew what "Slip one wyif," meant...

  11. I have the same comment at "T" on May 20th. I have started and ripped this out countless times; it's not adding up. ? Would love a reply so that I can cut to the finish like all the pretty versions I see on Ravelry. Thanks for posting.


  12. Such a lovely, soft, feminine pattern! Thank you!

  13. I can't figure out the pattern either. Could someone please just right it out as Row 1, Row 2, etc. without the "modified lace rib" and "knit the Cowl" which both contain first, second and next rows?

  14. Hey, I've got a new help page that answers some of the most common questions about this pattern. Check it out:

  15. great pattern, cute little ribbing!
    I did it in Cascade 220 Wool and size 8s and it worked just as well!

  16. Quickie Cowl question.
    Row 4 is rather vague....
    Should it be S1, k2 (for the 3 k border)... THEN p2 and pattern of K3, P2.... and then knit 3 remaining stitches?
    Please help.
    I have ripped out 3 times already....

  17. Made one and it's beautiful!!!
    Thank you!!!

  18. This is a great pattern!
    I am on my second one already with plans for more.
    I love it!

  19. love love LOVE this pattern! I've made it three times already! :-) I've made it with different weight yarns each time and it's consistently gorgeous. Thanks so much!

  20. Hello!

    I'm knitting this cowl up and I LOVE IT! I just wanted to say thank you and to mention something I found a little strange. Not with the pattern though (the pattern is perfect).

    I was on a yarn crawl this weekend and one of the stores was A Yarn Over Marblehead (in Marblehead, Mass) and they had this cowl knit up along with copies of the pattern (for free) next to some perfect yarn for it. And I started knitting the cowl up that night and entered it into ravelry, and it occured to me that I had a very similar cowl (yours) in my queue. I went to check and see how close the patterns were, and they aren't just close. They're IDENTICAL. Down to the wording and your picture.

    But there's no attribution or a link to your blog on the photocopy that I picked up. Maybe it's your store? In which case I'm being quite silly, but I kind of doubted it since your location is given as North Carolina.

    The photocopy pattern is definitely your pattern, but it has their shop name at the top.

    They aren't SELLING it, or the cowls made from it or anything. But it seemed a little... not cool that it's your pattern exactly without your name or a link to you on it.

    Hope that I'm not overstepping my bounds or stepping on toes. I just thought if it were my work I would want to know.

    This is the store page for them:

    Thanks SO much for sharing this pattern, I'm loving making it!!

  21. Awesome pattern, thanks so much for posting.

  22. Great pattern! Easy, beautiful, fun. Thanks!

  23. Lovely pattern, my mother has requested a cowl so I shall be getting started soon on this. Thanks for the pattern :)

  24. This is a great pattern. I made one for myself, modified one to make a scarf for a gift, and am making yet another for my sister. Thanks so much for this!

  25. I am just not sure what to do with the very last K2 at the end of Row 1 of the lace rib pattern. Am I repeating [K2 P3] until I have three remaining stitches or [K2 P3 K2] until I have three remaining stitches?

  26. Hi Maria,
    Perhaps the garter-stitch border is confusing you? On every row, you have 3 stitches of garter stitch. Then the Lace rib pattern begins. You'll work the Lace Rib pattern (ending with a K2) until 3 stitches remain. Those are actually in garter stitch. Knit those. You do this on every row -- that way there is a 3-stitch border of garter stitch framing the lace rib. I also slip the first stitch of every row, with the yarn held in front, in order to create a nice tidy edge. Hope this helps!

    1. Yay! Thanks for clarifying. I'm about to start and am somewhat of a beginner and was a bit goes!

  27. I love the part about donating to charity and whatnot. It's one of the most common questions I ask pattern writers as there are a lot of local organizations in need of knit stuff and benefits to help people in need. Thanks so much!

  28. I love this pattern. Going to make it with Yarn Bee Cameo.

  29. Love this pattern and have started three friends on it. It's helpful to think of it as always starts and ends with knit 3 (which will popcorn a border) then there is a gully of two stitches between the border and the lace (which will either be purl (WS) or knit (RS). Then the rest is either K3, P2 or P3, K2 everyother row. Every second row, you run the lace pattern. Does this help?

  30. I made one of these for my mom, a little narrower, and now I'm making some full-width ones to sell this Christmas for charity if that's OK. I "donated" the yarn to my project so 100% of the money will go to a charity that works directly with orphans here in China. I haven't decided whether one of the Home of Hope homes, or Swallow's Nest, both of which are in Henan province.

    The one other tweak from my mom's, which I'll keep, is using a provisional cast-on and then kitchener to end it. I like puzzles, and doing kitchener on any sort of rib is exactly that!

  31. I am wrking the pattern, and I found it easiest to just drop some markers in for the three stitches that way i dont actually have to "think" about them

  32. Just made this yesterday, took a couple of hours, absolutely gorgeous pattern, makes me feel like I'm super clever when I make it! Making another matching cowl for my mum for Christmas. I've used King Cole Riot Chunky, mine is in 657 Monsoon, mum's will be in 654 wild flower. :D Thanks for such a fab pattern.