Estonian Lace Cowl With Pattern

I think I have mentioned before how great my local Goodwills are. They sell yarn in grab bags, and I find the most amazing stuff. Last week it was three months worth of KnitCrate yarns in one $3.99 bag (minus one hank of each of two months). It took a bit of sleuthing to ID them, since they were without their labels, but ID them I did.

On the left is one hanks-worth of Vidalana Lofti DK, a beautiful chainette-style merino/cotton/alpaca blend, in the colorway Tiger Lily. I wanted to make something quick but still challenging, and a lace cowl is perfect for that. Not that anything only using under 275 yards of yarn is going to be anything OTHER than quick. Anyway, I browsed patterns a bit, and found a lace pattern someone adapted from a photograph in an old Estonian Lace book. It’s also been used in a couple of Knitty patterns over the years, but not in the round. It had a vaguely lily-shaped flower, so I thought it was fitting. Find the pattern for the cowl below. Be prepared for some foibles.

DK weight Yarn, size US 10.5 (6.5mm) circular needles, 22" or shorter.

Notes on abbreviations and odd stitches:

CDD: Centered double decrease. Slip 2 together knitwise, K 1, pass slipped stitches over.

LDD: Left leaning double decrease. Slip 1 knitwise, knit 2 together, pass slipped stitch over, or, knit 3 together through back loop. Each of these methods stacks the stitches in a different order. The first places the center stitch at the bottom of the stack, which defines the top of the decrease more attractively, but it is more work. The second is much easier, but stacks the stitches in the order they sit on the needle, which doesn’t define the top of the decrease as well. Use whichever you prefer.

RDD: Right leaning double decrease. Knit 2 together through back loops, slip back to left needle, slip next stitch over worked stitch and move back to right needle, or, knit 3 together. The pros and cons of each is the same as for the LDD.

9in3: Make 9 sts from 3 sts. Insert needle into 3 stitches as if to knit them together. Without moving these sts off left-hand needle, work k 1, yo, k 1, yo, k 1, yo, k 1, yo, k 1, into the three stitches. Once you have 9 stitches on the right needle, remove the left needle from the work.

CO 120, join to knit in round.

Round 1: K
Round 2: P 5, k 1 around
Round 3: K
Round 4: P 5, k 1 around
Round 5: K

Before beginning Round 6, k 1 and place a stitch marker, to shift the beginning of the round left by one stitch. Using a stitch marker is highly recommended. Your rows are about to get weird.

Begin pattern (two full pattern repeats, offset from one another):

Round 6: K 3, yo, cdd, yo, k 6, repeat around (multiple of 12 sts)

Round 7 and all further odd rounds: K

Round 8: Ldd, k 3, rdd, 9in3, repeat around (multiple of 14 sts)

Round 10: K2tog tbl, k 1, k2tog, k 3, yo, k 3, repeat around (multiple of 14 sts)

Round 12: Cdd, rdd, yo, k 1, yo, k 3, yo, k 1, yo, ldd, repeat around (multiple of 12 sts)

Round 14: K 5, yo, cdd, yo, k 4, repeat around. On final repeat, end with k 3, and shift place marker one st right. (multiple of 12 sts)

Round 16: 9in3, ldd, k 3, rdd, repeat around (multiples of 14 sts)

Round 18: K 3, yo, k 3, yo, k 3, k2tog tbl, K 1, k2tog, repeat around (multiples of 14 sts)

Round 20: Rdd, yo, k 1, yo, k 3, yo, k 1, yo, ldd, cdd, repeat around. Before beginning next round, k 1, and shift pm to the left of this st. (multpile of 12 sts)

Repeat Rounds 6-21 to desired length, ending with Round 15 or Round 7. Be sure to shift your round beginning marker one stitch left or right before beginning the next offset pattern repeat, as noted in the instructions above, to keep them aligned as required.

Following last k round of pattern repeats:
(how you work the next rounds may change depending on whether you stopped with round 7 or 15. You may need to work K 1, p 5. Make sure your knit column is aligned with the knit column at the opposite edge and work accordingly.)

Round 1: P 5, k 1 around

Round 2: K

Round 3: P 5, k 1 around

Round 4: K

Bind off and weave in ends.

It is important that you carefully block this item. Synthetic yarns that don’t block cleanly are not recommended. In order to get the best block possible, you will want to work the edges into peaks at every other knit column. Whether the peaks are aligned with each other or offset will depend on whether you stopped at Rounds 7 or 15.


It is beautiful!

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You really picked a wonderful pattern to bring out the subtle colorways of that yarn. It is really lovely!

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So beautiful!

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Wow! Gorgeous!

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Beautiful and what a score!

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That is gorgeous!

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Really lovely. :heart:

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