I love knitting with simple textures that combine in a way that looks complexly elegant. I hate how most of the patterns that have these features have me flipping between pages, remembering which row of which chart I am on, and usually end up with a graft that isn’t in pattern and looks out of place.
That is why I love the featured stitch patterns in my newest cowl design, Terra Firma. It combines textures (seed stitch and garter for simplicity) and uncomplicated lace (for some interest) into an elegant and natural pattern. And it’s grafted in pattern so you don’t have a distracting line through the middle of your work that makes you self-conscious of how you wear it.
The cowl is provisionally cast on, knit flat with the icord border as you go, and grafted, and each texture is its own 20 row repeat, so there’s no need to remember if you are on Row 12 of one chart and Row 18 of another.
This cowl was designed with Shalimar Breathless yarn, a delightful blend of merino, cashmere, and silk, which makes this cowl as much a pleasure to knit as it is to wear. The yarn has a beautiful and easy drape, giving a classic elegance to the textures. I recommend using a yarn that is solid or semisolid / tonal to really show off the pattern textures.
If you’re new to lace, this is a great pattern to give your fingers practice. There are lots of places to practice simple increase and decrease techniques like YO, K2Tog, and SSK, and less common increases like making one purlwise and decreasing two stitches with a sl1, k2tog, psso. Since the pattern is repeated, you don’t have to worry about any new stitch surprises after the first 20 rows.
More experienced knitters who enjoy stitch patterns that keep your interest because they are breaking up the monotony of stockinette or garter will find this to be a stimulating project. Simple enough to knit while watching Netflix, but engaging enough to keep you knitting one more row, the pattern is easy to pick up and knit for a few rows or take on the go.
Mirror knitters will be thrilled to find there is a special mirror knit version of the pattern just for you. No more transposing increases and decreases or cables, or ending up with a mirrored end result. You can knit from the included mirror knitting instructions and have the same experience and finished item as a traditional knitter and avoid the hassle of having to remember what you have to reverse and what you can knit as written.
Needles: US size 6 (4 mm) 14” (36cm) Straight Needles or size needed to obtain gauge.
Yarn Used: Shalimar Yarns Breathless | Fingering / 4 ply | 75% Merino, 15% Cashmere goat, 10% Silk | 420 yards (384 meters) / 4 oz (115 grams) | Loden Colorway
Sizes: Short, Medium, Long
Short – 284 yards (260 meters) – 320 yards (293 meters)
Medium – 360 yards (330 meters) – 440 yards (402 meters)
Long – 480 yards (439 meters) – 560 yards (512 meters)