Yes, February is done and gone. This includes the lovely February scarf, just off my needles:
I love this scarf! I can’t remember the last time I knit a scarf; they can be rather tedious and I don’t have the patience for them. In fact, despite its beauty, I really only decided to knit this because I had five skeins of Quince & Co Osprey sitting in my stash. Not enough for a sweater, too much for a hat and mittens. And yet, I think it’s fabulous, and didn’t ever get to the stage where I wanted to strangle myself with it.
The pattern is by Beth Weaver for Quince & Co; you can find it here. As I’ve mentioned previously, the pattern calls for six skeins of wool. My finished dimensions pre-blocking were 7.5″x90″; it bloomed quite a bit with a wet blocking however, to 9″x102″. The pattern, with six skeins, is 126″ long, but I think this one is plenty long enough, especially for Leah (she’s 5’5″).
I had some issues with the blocking. Before blocking the cables are very thick and chunky; the texture is fantastic, with lots of shadow and movement. The blocking flattened them a little bit, so to my eye the scarf loses a bit of its architectural quality. I’m probably being excessively picky, however. The top photo is pre-blocking, the one below is post-blocking:
Blocking, however, did have a lot of benefits. First, the scarf is considerably softer post-blocking and thus more wearable. It has gained over a foot in length and is eaiser to toss around and wrap multiple times. It actually feels lighter, though of course it weighs just the same. More importantly, pre-blocking the edges showed a strong tendency to roll, which the blocking has hopefully cured.
I should add that I didn’t do any stretching while blocking. On the contrary, the yarn bloomed so much when wet, that the block was mostly an exercise in moderation. I let the scarf soak for a good 15 minutes to make sure that it was completely saturated. Then I very carefully spilled off the water, without squeezing or stretching the scarf. I laid it out on a towel on top of a tiled floor, put another towel on top, and then with bare feet, walked on it until both towels were soaked. Then, I carefully picked it up and laid it out on a fresh towel, making sure it didn’t get stretched, covered it with another fresh towel and repeated the procedure. (This bit is fun; I always imagine I’m Lucy Ricardo squishing grapes to make wine.) I then laid it out on a layer of towels across the living room carpet (lots of towels because it’s very long) and pinned the edges down. I’m not sure it even needs pinning; but I did it just to make sure that the two stitches along the edge in reverse stockinette didn’t roll. You could use blocking wires; I used about 200 pins instead.
This scarf will keep you toasty warm, no matter how cold your February is. You don’t even need to wear a hat:
I highly recommend both pattern and yarn. I have used this yarn before and know from experience that it wears well and washes well and resists pilling. It starts off soft and stays soft. The pattern is simple but arresting, and because of the thick wool and easy cables, it will fly off your needles.