That halo had me the moment the yarn arrived. It's not what I usually knit with, but it just wouldn't be ignored. And because I totally went with that urge, here's a new cowl pattern called Gin Thistle.
Jill Draper's new Brunswick yarn is big and bold and sheepy. It's a mix of Corriedale - sourced from small farms in Maine and NY - and Mohair, from Jill's own Mom's flock of goats. She describes it as a soft and shiny faux single. It's still rustic and has a bit of personality, and it's just gorgeous to look at.
As always, Jill has created a yarn you can feel really good about, because it's sourced locally and spun up at Green Mountain Spinnery and supports the small farms and businesses we love and need. It even has just a little bit of chaff in it, since it wasn't treated with any harsh chemical washes. And I tell you, I need to be knitting with something I can feel good about right now. This one is some much needed comfort food.
I love bulky yarn in simple lines, so I went with geometric cables that cross in and out to create a big diamond pattern around the cowl. I played with the ribbing transition above and below the cables, as I kind of love to do, but for the most part, this is simple TV watching, potato-chip knitting. Once you get the rhythm of it down, it flies off the needles and you're done.
I did add just a little detail to frame the cable panel, but in the freezing cold we didn't manage to get a good photo, and then we ran back inside for more of those yummy drinks - so pardon the dining room table shot below!
My lovely friend Misa is the model again - she was easily bribed out into a blizzard after a few drinks at a really cozy bar (The Oak Room at the Fairmont Hotel) in Copley Square. It was crazy cold and the light was a bit hard to capture, and we had to keep moving, not only to get warm but to avoid getting news trucks in the shots, as they were all parked right below us in the square. We were the only ones out there besides the news people, who were probably wondering what the hell we were up to on the steps of the church there....
As you can see by how she's wearing it, the cowl is designed to be worn over your coat, or long - as opposed to doubling around your neck. This fiber wants to be seen, more than it wants to be folded over and snuggled into. Although Misa did snuggle into it and says it was a perfect shield against the blowing snow.
The pattern is available on Ravelry for $6.00, and on the blog as well. Jill has some gorgeous colors of Brunswick up on her Etsy Page right now, including the Celadon that I used. For Gin Thistle you want 2 skeins of this beautiful stuff.
Don't you want to squish it?
As for Gin Thistle, the cocktail -
2 oz gin
.5 oz cynar
.5 oz yellow Chartreuse
1 dash cardamom bitters
squeeze of lemon
Shake the above ingredients with ice and strain into a small, fancy glass. Garnish with a lemon peel.