Dettifoss {Cowl}

The melt water from the massive Vatnajökull glacier in Iceland forms the river Jökulsá á Fjöllum, which slinks its way through a barren horseshoe canyon eventually surging into rapids just before it crashes over a towering precipice of basalt…and becomes Dettifoss. Water, so innocuous a material, is amplified into something far more powerful. This is, perhaps, even a metaphor for Iceland itself: in some ways cool, quiet, and unassuming, in others, explosive, fiery, and spectacular. In the same way, this cowl juxtaposes airy lace with snuggly warmth, and simplicity in working with an intricate appearance for a quick-to-knit item you’ll want to wear every day (except maybe in the summer). Dettifoss is a quick, easily-customizable knit that is worked flat from side-to-side, combining a twisted brioche stitch pattern with short-rows of basic lace.

Pattern price $6 for PDF download
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You Will Need:
• 250 yds (229 m) bulky weight* yarn
Suggested yarn is: Mountain Meadow Wool Sheridan
{100% merino wool} 96 yds/3.5 oz (88 m/100 g) per skein
• 6.5 mm/US 10½ needles
• yarn needle for grafting
• optional: 2 safety-pin style stitch markers

Skill Level: Intermediate-Advanced (basic stitches, basic lace, repetitive stitch patterns,  simple shaping/finishing, advanced finishing techniques)
Techniques: lace, brioche stitches, twist stitches (not to be confused with “twisted” stitches), simple short rows, grafting.
Gauge: 12½ stitches & 24 rows = 4” (10 cm) square in Twisted Brioche, after moderate blocking
Finished size: 26” (66 cm) top circumference, 12½” (32 cm) length, 39” (99 cm) bottom circumference

Notes:
• To use the row counter included in the pattern, please read this blog entry.
• The cowl has a 2 stitch i-cord edge that is worked simultaneously to the rest of the piece to finish the edges of the cowl and keep them from curling. If you have trouble remembering to do these before and after working the main motif, it may help you to place stitch markers 2 stitches in from each edge.

* Some countries call this “12ply” weight.

Construction:
Dettifoss is very simple, and isn’t knit bottom-up or top-down, but side-to-side so you can customize the fit the way you want based on the gauge you end up with (if it’s a bit different from that given), and how aggressively you block it. This pattern uses brioche stitches and very basic lace as well as unwrapped short rows. The finished, trapezoidal piece is grafted closed and resembles the waterfall that inspired the pattern. The pattern PDF consists of three pages and is roughly 1.5 megabytes. Latest version of the pattern: January 11, 2011.

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