This one has been a long time coming, but I think it was worth it.
Pattern: Shifting Sands Scarf by Grumperina [*via Ravelry]
Materials: Malabrigo Pure Worsted Merino in "Frank Ochre"
Amount: 2 hanks; 430 yds/200g
Needles: US 9/5.5 mm straight Clovers
Finished Dimensions: 65" long, 6" wide
Start Date: November 2006
Finish Date: November 2007 (shameful I know)
This is one of those projects that sat in my basket and got a lot of short-term play, off and on over the course of a year: bus trips, flights, waiting rooms, etc. It inched along slow and steady but I finally knit up all the yarn sometime last Fall. As for why it took so long to get blog play, I can't be sure, although it might have something to do with all the wearing that was happening in the colder months. Malabrigo users know how neck-friendly this stuff is!
Modifications: The pattern is written for a sport weight yarn but is easily modified for any weight you'd like. The pattern repeat is 5 sts wide, so any multiple of 5+2 (two selvage sts) will work. I cast on 42 stitches, rather than the 52 suggested by the pattern, and knit until I ran out of yarn. The other mod I tested out was a hem on either end of the scarf to combat the natural curling of the fabric. I'm pretty happy with how it turned out - you can see the hem in the previous photo.
Here's what I did: I cast on 15% less stitches with a provisional cast on, knit one row, knit one row increasing evenly across the work to 42, worked a turning row using *k1, sl1* across, work one row stockinette, work first pattern row and continue scarf as written to end. I tacked down the loose stitches after all was said and done, but you could easily knit the hem together with the 3rd row of pattern for a super-clean join.
As for the hem on the other side, it's basically the reverse order of the previous instructions: work last cable row, knit one row, knit turning row (k1, sl1 across), decrease 15% of sts evenly across next row (I decreased 5 or 6 sts), knit 2 rows and tack down loose stitches invisibly to back of fabric. Press the edges with a steam iron to get good-hem-behavior and a nice finished look.
I have a finished sweater and a finished blanket to share with you in the next couple posts. The summer heat might be here, but my wool addiction is stronger than any weather condition. Bring on the summer sweater knitting!