Even as a beginning knitter, I never made a plain garter scarf, or even a stockinette scarf. BORING. My first project was a pair of fingerless gloves that had a cast off, cast on slit for the thumb. Despite my love of the franchise, I have never knit a Doctor Who scarf and probably never will.
The trendy new thing in yarn this year, at least going by my local yarn stores, is novelty yarn designed to make us re-evaluate the simple scarf with impulse-buy price points and nearly instant gratification projects. Which is to say, I’m kind of addicted to frilly scarves. Even though the pattern for them is basically, “cast on between 4 and 12 stitches, and knit every row until you run out of yarn”.
This one is Flounce yarn, by Knitting Fever. It’s a ribbon yarn that unfolds into a fishnet mesh, which you crochet or knit by poking the needle about 1/4 of the way down from the top of the ribbon, so it has enough strands to not break. (I find this easier to accomplish with a crochet hook than by knitting.) As with all of these yarns, you don’t ever pull the entire strand of ribbon through a stitch, which leaves the rest of the strand to puff out and create the texture. Flounce looks like feather boa without the feathers, and tends to inspire people to hum burlesque riffs. I’ve made two of these now, both for five year old girls. They appreciate the pink and purple and frilly, and don’t yet know anything about stripper music.
This is Trendsetter’s Cha-Cha yarn. The store sample dragged me in because the ruffles stacked on each other so densely that it looked like brain coral. Brains! Around my neck! I’m not sure why mine doesn’t really give the same effect, but I’m still knitting this one so maybe it needs a good blocking/petting. This yarn is nice because it clearly delineates for you where you’re supposed to be knitting, and what part of the yarn you’re supposed to just leave alone to do its own thing. I find it’s just as easy to knit this as to crochet it. You have to manually place each ‘box’ on the needle, but since I’m a thrower I do that anyway. Unlike the other yarns, which are all acrylic, this one also has some wool content (and is priced accordingly).
The real show-stopper is Filatura di Crosa’s Moda tape yarn:
The netting is bigger and sturdier than the fine strands of Flounce, and reminds me more of a chain link fence than fishnets. You knit into just the topmost link, like for the Cha-Cha. Some colorways have gold or silver sparkles on one edge. Everyone at The Happy Ewe said, “That’s a ridiculous looking scarf”, followed immediately by, “I have to have it!” The Wednesday night spinning group cleaned them out of the sparkle-added yarns when we saw them.
I’m not keeping this scarf for myself, though. I’ve entered it in the Magick4Terri auction over on Livejournal. I grew up reading fantasy and urban fantasy (which back in the day meant Faerie creatures in an urban environment, not the sparkly vampires and paranormal romance that seem to be stealing that label these days). Terri Windling’s name on an anthology always meant there would be Good Stuff inside, so even though I’m not a famous author or artist I wanted to contribute something to the auction. I figure the “ooh, sparkly” appeal, along with being able to get it to a US buyer before Christmas, should help draw at least a couple bids.
I know anyone reading this (Bueller? Bueller?) is probably a knitter who can make her own scarf, but maybe you have non-knitting friends that you don’t like well enough to spend time knitting for them. Link them here! The auction also has some handspun yarns, and projects spun and knitted, or woven, by authors like Emma Bull and Susan Palwick. And, y’know, original art from Brian Froud, Alan Lee and others, plus tons of signed limited edition or out of print books by all sorts of fantasy writers. Bidding doesn’t end until December 15th, so there’s plenty of time to check it out or offer something of your own.
PS- Apologies for the poor quality of pictures today. It’s been drizzling for two days, which, since we need over 17 FEET in the lakes to make it out of this drought, I can’t bring myself to be upset over.