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Pinstripe TenScarf

The ubiquitous Four Scarf makes up a good deal of the projects on who_knits. During (or perhaps a bit before) last year's Good vs Evil Knitalong, several discussions were started about what types of scarves the *other* Doctors might wear, including a FO or two of a Ten-inspired striped scarf. After the KAL (of course, I had intentions of making several projects . . . and still haven't finished the first one I started—sorry, Murray!) I decided I would attempt to make a pinstripe TenScarf for lowc's Christmas present. One, she's a knitter too (and when she *finally* joined who_knits I had to stop posting updates); Two, she's the one to blame for my Who obsession; and Three, I was pretty sure she'd love it. ^_^ Two big problems (??) however: first, I had to come up with a pattern; second, I'd never made a vertically-striped scarf before . . . and I was making a pattern for said scarf! To attempt to be sneaky, I referred to the Scarf as the "Covert Knitting Project" in my regular journal and on Ravelry (I was also sneaky in colour names—I believe I had the blue as "light" and the brown as "dark").

One of the tricky bits, I found, was that I had to figure out how much yarn I was going to need beforehand . . . because I couldn't just stop a few stripes early if I ran out of yarn—like I could do if I were making a horizontally-striped scarf. I had to do a bit of knitting maths to figure this out—I'm not going to post it, but if anyone wants me to, let me know and I'll type it up as well.

Before the pattern, however, how about yarn picspam?

WotA Williamsburg WotA Chocolate no flash
The actual colour for Williamsburg is slightly lighter than in my stash picture—it's a lovely medium teal-ish blue. And WotA Chocolate really is the exact colour of chocolate (somewhere between milk and dark) . . . yum. ^_^ (I may or may not be mostly copying my Flickr and Ravelry stash notes.)

WotA TenScarf no flash WotA TenScarf
My camera is a bit wonky as my yarn colours never turn out quite true . . . but are usually better when taken *without* flash. The Chocolate is just about on in the picture on the left (taken without flash); the Williamsburg is far too faded. In the picture taken *with* flash, on the right, the Chocolate is obviously far too dark—nearly black!—while the Williamsburg is a bit too blue and not teal enough.

Pinstripe TenScarf

Tenscarf no flash Tenscarf wrong side
(Yes, the wrong side *still* looks like pinstripes!)

* KnitPicks Wool of the Andes worsted weight (110 yds/50g), 4 skeins Chocolate (MC) and 2 skeins Williamsburg (CC) [or brown and teal-ish blue in another yarn; you should have about twice as much brown as blue yarn]
Note: I purchased 6 balls of yarn because my knitting maths gave me a total yardage of 530 yds (rounded up to 550 as WotA comes in skeins of 110 yds). I only ended up using three *full* skeins of Chocolate and not even a full skein of the Williamsburg (to be more exact, I used aroundish 3.75 skeins of Chocolate and maybe 90% of a skein of Williamsburg) . If you have extra, you could always make a matching hat—or mittens!
* US Size 9 (5.5 mm) circular needle, 36"/90cm length
* Place markers (Highly Recommended—especially for casting on all those stitches!)
* Tapestry needle (e.g. your trusty Chibi)
* Point protectors or rubber band (these are very long rows)

Gauge: KnitPicks suggests a gauge of "16 sts and 24 rows to 4"/10cm using US size 9 (5.5 mm) needles." I got 4.5 sts and 7 rows to 1 inch, so approximately 18 sts and 28 rows to 4in/10cm. However, as this is a scarf, gauge doesn't really matter (unless you're very picky about that sort of thing).
Note: This pattern would probably also work well for crocheting. I don't know how much yarn you would need, though.

Size: The projected size was 6 ft by 6.5 in (approx. 1.83m by 16.5cm). My finished dimensions were 80 in by 6.5 in (or approx 2m by 16.5cm).

1. Cast on 324 stitches loosely in Main Colour (Chocolate, or choice of brown). I would suggest using the "use both ends of the skein/use two balls of yarn" method** to cast on and placing a stitch marker every 20 sts or so to save your sanity.
2. Work 6 rows in garter stitch.
3. Switch to Contrast Colour (Williamsburg, or choice of teal-ish blue) and work 2 rows in garter.
4. Repeat four times, for 5 brown stripes and 5 blue stripes total (40 rows; approximately 6 inches/13cm).
5. End with a brown stripe (6 rows). You should now have 6 brown stripes (one at each end) and 5 blue stripes (46 rows total).
6. Bind off LOOSELY. I would almost suggest binding off a little looser than you normally do—this is the length of the scarf and binding off too tightly might cause it to curl in on itself.
7. Weave in ends.
8. Block if you wish and if appropriate for your yarn choice. I didn’t.
9. Wear with your Converse and save the universe! ^_^

**I have no idea what this method is actually called, but it is a sort of modified long-tail cast on using two different strands (either both ends of the same skein, or one end each from two different skeins of the same yarn). I found it on page 28 of When Bad Things Happen to Good Knitters by Marion Edmonds and Ahza Moore, 2007. The short version: make a slipknot using both strands and place on your needle. Cast on the required number of stitches using the long-tail method, but DO NOT count the slipknot. When you've finished casting on, cut one of the strands (leaving a tail to weave in) and continue knitting with the other. On your next row, unravel the slip knot when you come to it—it's served its purpose and is no longer needed. The best thing about this method is that "you can't run out of yarn when you're using at least half a ball to cast on with" (Edmonds and Moore, 2007).

More pictures!

Tenscarf Tenscarf rotated

The following were taken by the lovely lowc, who is a much better knitting photographer than I am (I can never think of interesting knitting poses. Also, her camera photographs yarn better).
TenScarf (lowc) TenScarf 2 (lowc)
TenScarf 3 (lowc) TenScarf 4 (lowc)

This is a free pattern, but I would ask that you please not sell the pattern or finished projects. Thank you.


( 12 comments — Leave a comment )
Mar. 18th, 2009 01:44 am (UTC)
Wow, that is amazing :D
I wonder if the pattern can be modified to do the blue suit/maroon pinstripes? *ponders*
Mar. 18th, 2009 02:28 am (UTC)
Thank you!

Hmm . . . I suppose if you found the right yarn colours—although it might be a bit tricky as it's hard to even tell the blue suit *is* pinstriped unless one sees it up close/the light is right. But I'm sure it would look fantastic! ^_^
Mar. 18th, 2009 02:12 am (UTC)
Since I never got pictures of me actually wearing it (whoops), it might be of interest that I'm 5'2" and this scarf hangs evenly to mid-shin (yes, that's shin not thigh) when unwrapped, and can easily be wrapped 2 or 3 times with ends more than long enough to tuck in a coat. It's long and stretchy and super warm.

And I love it so so so so so much!

(P.S. Your camera's fine, I've just got three huge east-facing windows that give me lots of morning light. And my poses aren't so much poses as me strategically trying to hide how messy my apartment is, lol!)
Mar. 18th, 2009 02:33 am (UTC)
I should tell you that I contemplated making it longer (I was pondering 7 or 8) and used my long grey Homespun scarf to see how long it would look on me, pinning it with a stitch marker so it would be shorter (as the grey scarf is I think 9ish ft?) and then taking into account that you're a few inches shorter than me. And I experimented with different scarf-tying methods to see how long the scarf ends would be with different-length scarves. Eventually, I came to the conclusion that 6ft would be long enough to still use the fold-in-half-and-stick-the-ends-through-the-loop method of scarf-tying.

I'm so very happy you love it, too! ^_^

(Hmm, perhaps this is true. I don't have good light anywhere, even at home. This has nothing to do with yarn pics, but my zoom is also rubbish. Even more so than my camera fails at yarn pics.)
Mar. 18th, 2009 06:18 am (UTC)
Oooo I am so tempted to try this. Maybe when I have the money to get the KnitPicks yarn (cuz it looks so pretty and warm) I just might try this!

Great job, and thanks for sharing the pattern!
Mar. 18th, 2009 05:41 pm (UTC)
Do you have a link to somewhere that explains your cast-ons and cast-offs? The only time I made a long scarf, it curled in like a bad slice of bacon! Then again, I've never actually learned how to do either of those two; I just get lazy and try whatever I can invent that makes sense :/
Apr. 21st, 2009 09:39 pm (UTC)
I love this! I'm totally bookmarking it for my next scarf project! I'd also like to second choperena's request for a link to your cast on method if you've got one...I've never heard of that before.

Thanks for sharing the pattern!
Apr. 21st, 2009 10:25 pm (UTC)

About the cast-on method . . . I'm trying to find out what it's actually called so I can look for a link to attach to the pattern. The problem I'm running into is that the authors don't really name it in the book—it's in an inset box with the descriptive title "How to Avoid Running Out of Yarn Before You've Cast on All Your Stitches."

Once I *do* find it online with the description (they have such helpful instructions in the book) I'll be sure to edit the pattern.
Apr. 21st, 2009 11:08 pm (UTC)
Ah, no worries. I'll ask my knitting friends and see if they know. :)
May. 9th, 2009 06:23 am (UTC)
This is fantastic! Great work!
It doesn't look like you do this...which is why I'm bringing it up. When I cast on for something that I want somewhat rounded corners on (since the bind-off often does it naturally), I cast on 2 extra stitches and in the first row, I knit two together on each end... and then knit normally for the rest of it. It gives the cast-on edge a really nice rounded corner that matches the bind-off corner. Just something to think about for future projects. :o)
Aug. 23rd, 2009 05:48 pm (UTC)
*Squishes scarf* Must...make...own..!

This is reaaalllyyy late, but I was painfully intrigued by how you casted on, and I even tried to find the page in the book via Google Books (only goes to page 19. I read up to there though and I'm amazed by how eloquently and easy the descriptions of things are, when I've often spent much of my knitting reading time dazed and confused - I must acquire this book!). With some careful searching of keywords, I sort of kicked what is a long tail cast-on with an added tweak of two skeins? I could be totally off mark, but I found a site that described it as using both ends of the skein/two skeins.


The very last one. Hope that might be somewhat helpful? xD

I've always used that cast-on method, but I didn't ever think of doing it with two different strands. My mind is blown...
Sep. 14th, 2009 08:04 pm (UTC)
Yes, it is a long tail cast-on—which I really ought to have specified! ::facepalm:: Thanks for reminding me. ^_^ (The good thing about having the pattern as a LJ entry is that it's so easy for me to edit things.)

And I *love* that book! It's small enough (aboutish 6"x7") that it lives in my knitting bag most of the time and it's such a good resource. I really ought to review it, actually, as this *is* a book/knitblog.

Thanks again!
( 12 comments — Leave a comment )