Cowls and Festivals and Fall, oh my!

Happy Friday, lovely knitters!

Fall is well and truly started, and the final make. wear. love. retreat is in the rear-view mirror. I’ve got retreat designs to share with you in a week or so (see them in the shop if you’re impatient!), but today I want to talk about crisp cool weather and the accessories that make it amazing.

This weekend I’m excited to be heading to the New York Sheep and Wool festival (which you many know by “Rhinebeck”) this afternoon, buckets of yarn and yummy food in tow, to see the dearest friends in the world. We’ve been doing this for ages now, and I can’t imagine missing it.

A busy fairground, with gorgeous fall foliage and blue skies in the background.
Gorgeous weather (fingers crossed!), lots of yarn, cider donuts, and beautiful leaves. CAN’T. WAIT.

If you’re headed to the festival this weekend too, and you see me, give a wave!

I’m not sure why I always bring so much yarn to this festival, where I inevitably buy more yarn – this year, I’m bringing some yarn I bought last year but haven’t knit yet, plus I’ve got a couple of sweaters on the needles, plus I have a cowl on the needles, out of this lovely stuff:

Three colors of shiny gray yarn, with the sheen of silk fuzzed by the halo of alpaca.

And speaking of which:

CustomFit can now make cowl patterns.

This month marks a pretty exciting milestone for CustomFit! The custom pattern engine can now produce its first non-set-in-sleeve-sweater patterns: Cowls.

Now, cowls are some of the simplest knitting projects around, so it might seem a little weird to write a custom generator for them. But making CustomFit able to generate anything other than a set-in sleeve sweater required a crazy amount of tricky refactoring. (Thanks, past Amy.) So I wanted to start by making one of the simplest possible pieces, to give a good test of the refactoring itself.

I was surprised during the beta-testing process, though, how much I appreciated having the custom pattern capability. I could dive through the odds and ends leftover from other sweater projects, and whip up a great accessory without thinking at all. Case in point: I made a lovely version of the Bayberry Cowl out of yarn left over from Dockside:

A deep blue, tweedy cowl with gansey-esque stitch patterning at each edge.

Either through one of the built-in designs, or the new build-your-own cowl option, you can now get a cowl created to your choice of four circumferences and four heights:

  • Circumferences are either extra-small (20’’ or 51 cm), small (26” or 66 cm), medium, (42” or 106.5 cm), or large (60” or 152.5 cm).
  • Heights are either short (10” or 25.5 cm), average (12” or 30.5 cm), tall (16” or 40.5 cm), or extra-tall (20” or 51 cm).

And as always with CustomFit, you can create the patterns in any gauge you like from sub-lace-weight to bulky.

The initial designs.

I’ve started with three built-in cowl designs, two of which were already available as traditional patterns.

The Deep Current Cowl and the Bayberry Cowl were formerly-traditional patterns that now have a CustomFit option. I’m absolutely loving the version of Bayberry I worked up in Fibre Company Arranmore, above, and I have a version of Deep Current planned in some gorgeous Indigodragonfly later this season.

The Simsbury Cowl is new: A simple waffle-stitch cowl worked with a contrasting color edge. I used Blue Sky Fibers luxurious Eco-Cashmere for this sample, and I love the warm, lofty fabric it makes. You can find more details on the cowls on their shop pages, or if you’re a CustomFit Maker subscriber head on over to the CustomFit designs page and just get started!

There’s not much more to say about cowls, but I couldn’t head off to the festival without letting you know! I hope you’re all doing well, and having a wonderful and wooly fall so far.

1 thought on “Cowls and Festivals and Fall, oh my!

  1. Have a fabulous time Amy!

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