Scarfaholic – The Summer Scarf – Part One

I am not a warm weather person and losing the ability to wear my winter clothing makes it even harder to endure, because I love sweaters, boots, layered clothing, and, of course, scarves.  When traveling to Europe, everyone (especially in France) continues to wear scarves in the warmer weather.  I decided to adopt this trend, so I have knitted and purchased a ton of summer scarves over the years. I will share some of my findings and thoughts over two separate blog posts.

Online Knitting SuppliesDon’t be quick to discount the summer scarf.  Like its winter counterpart, it finishes off and “ties together” an outfit.  I really like the way a tank top looks with a light summer scarf.  Obviously, the materials one would choose to make a summer scarf will differ greatly from the thick and soft luxury fibers chosen to make a winter scarf.  This doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice all luxury fibers in making a lighter weight scarf, just that you will have to choose fibers smarter.

I am currently working on a few summer scarves, hoping to have them finished and ready to wear in the next month.  One is made of Shibui Linen, and is a free pattern on their website.  It is designed by Antonia Shankland, who always seems to design scarves that I would choose to make.  They are easy and gorgeous.  I am making this particular scarf with the colors brick, apple, sidewalk, and tar in the Shibui Linen.  All these colors can be ordered on our website.

Online Knitting SuppliesI am also working on a scarf using Habu linen.  So far, I am still experimenting with this pattern, trying to combine two yarns throughout the scarf and haven’t been happy with the results.  I will put this finished scarf in a future blog when I get it right.  Having said that, I am more than happy with the Habu Linen itself.  Here is what I have knitted so far.  This just might be an all linen scarf.  You cannot tell from the picture how light and beautiful this linen feels knitted up.

Another scarf I am about to begin is a variation of the Purl Be White Caps Cowl. This is a beautiful cowl, but being a scarfoholic I had to make it into a scarf!  I am using Habu Nerimaki Cotton with Habu Cotton Gima.  Here is the original pattern for the Cowl:

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Contrast Color (CC): 1 skein of Alchemy’s Silken Straw, 100% silk, in the color Platinum.
(Here is where I replaced the Silken Straw with Habu Cotton Gima. 1 Gima will be fine)
Main Color (MC): 2 cones of Habu’s Cotton Nerimaki Slub, 100% cotton, in the color Undyed.
(If you’re picking your own colorway, be aware that the Nerimaki dyed colors come in skeins of only 108 yards, and so you will need 3 skeins of any dyed color.)

You’ll also need…
A US #4, 16-inch circular needle
8 stitch markers

-GAUGE-
8 stitches = 1 inch in stockinette stitch using the Silken Straw

-FINISHED SIZE-
Circumference at the Top: 17-inches
Circumference at the Bottom: 23-inches
Length: 21-inches

NOTE: Knit the first stitch of each row (not including the first and last 6 rows) with both yarns held together. This creates a handsome faux seam that runs vertically and adds a bit of structure and also eliminates the number of tails you would have to weave in.

-BEGINNING AT THE BOTTOM ROLLED EDGE-

With the Contrast Color (CC), cast on 184 stitches.

Place a marker and join for working in the round, being careful to not twist the stitches.

Knit 6 rounds.

Change to the Main Color (MC).

NOTE: Do not cut yarn. As you continue, knit the first stitch of each following round with both yarns held together.

Purl 1 round.

1- With MC, knit 12 rounds.

2- Change to CC, knit 4 rounds.

Repeat these two steps 9 more times.

-SHAPING THE TOP-

With MC, knit 2 rounds.

Next Round: *K23, place marker, repeat from * to end of round.

Decrease Round: *Knit to 2 stitches before next marker, k2tog, repeat from * to end of round. (176 stitches)

Knit 3 rounds evenly.

Repeat Decrease Round. (168 stitches)

Knit 3 rounds evenly.

Repeat Decrease Round. (160 stitches)

With CC, knit 4 rounds.

With MC, Knit 3 rounds evenly.

Repeat Decrease Round. (152 stitches)

Knit 3 rounds evenly.

Repeat Decrease Round. (144 stitches)

Knit 3 rounds evenly.

Repeat Decrease Round, removing makers as you go. (136 stitches)

-FINISHING WITH THE TOP ROLLED EDGE-

Still with MC, purl one round.

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NOTE: Cut the MC yarn, you will no longer be knitting the first stitch of each row with both yarns held together.

With CC, knit 6 rounds.

Bind off loosely, weave in your ends and block!

For the scarf version of this cowl, I am taking the same repeat pattern of Gima and Nerimaki to work throughout the scarf.  I will have a pattern version of this scarf as soon as I finish it.  I have replaced the Alchemy Silken Straw for Habu Cotton Gima.  I have worked with both yarns, and I prefer the Gima, not only the difference in price, but the Silken Straw has a tendency to pill. I also like keeping it a complete Habu project.  I think that Habu fibers work so wonderfully together.  I am guessing that this scarf will use 2-3 Gima, and 12-14 Nerimaki Cotton.  Keep in mind that I like my scarves to be wide and long (9” wide and 90” long).  You may prefer your scarf to be less wide and shorter.  I will let you know as soon as possible, how much yarn my scarf required.

(click for part two)