Sunday, January 26, 2014

Arm Knitted Cowl Scarf

This weather! Ahh! We are under a travel warning for the second day due to blowing snow and frigid temps. I'm thankful I was able to be out of the house Thursday and Friday despite not having school.  Tomorrow and Tuesday aren't looking good for getting out either.  More snow, wind, and sub zero temps are on the way.  I really shouldn't complain; I have a warm, solid roof over my head, and more than enough food to eat.  That doesn't stop me from praying for an end to this crazy weather though!

I found an awesome YouTube tutorial for arm knitting a cowl scarf here. Knitting is one of those things on my bucket list, and honestly, it's intimidating to me. I don't know why. I know that's silly, but it's true. I watched the tutorial and thought this was a great first attempt at knitting because it's on a larger scale. I love chunky knit things.  They always look and feel so warm and cozy. This scarf is no exception.

The tutorial sates it's a 20 minute project. Perhaps for a seasoned knitter it is. I can be a little slow to catch on to things, but once I learn I'm good to go. It took me 2 hours start to finish. This includes watching and rewatching the tutorial when moving to the other arm and the binding process. Seems it's not so intimidating after all. My next one shouldn't take 2 hours though I don't know it will only be 20 minutes. (That's the OCD talking)

Can you see it? Ha!
Yes I have a thing for the heather oatmeal color palate.  I will match the carpet perfectly. Ha! 

3 skeins of thicker yarn (I used  6oz, 106 yard skeins.  Lion brand in Oatmeal) 
11 loops, or chains, per arm
12 rows (meaning you will make 6 rows ler arm) 
Patience & YouTube tutorials if this is your first time. I learn better by watching than just pictures & descriptions. 

I started with 3 skeins of thicker yarn. I am drawn to neutrals, but it was also the only color my local craft department had 3 skeins of. Perhaps others saw the tutorial and had an affinity to arm knit as well. More likely it's the same as my tree skirt project: my poor timing and limited supply in my little town. 

The actual knitting process is difficult to explain. It reminded me of a large scale version of friendship bracelets of my youth combined with the rainbow loom my son and I have been making since Christmas.  I will defer you to the video rather than try to explain. 

Once I found my rhythm it went super quick 

The trickiest part was moving to my other arm. You have to hold your working yarn away from the knitting otherwise it will get woven into your row. I may or may not have had to restart a few times due to miswoven working yarn... But I didn't give up.  Moving to the opposite arm isn't difficult in and of itself. It's just paying attention to what you're doing. You have to pay attention to how the new loop goes around your wrist. The loop won't lie flat if your loop is twisted. I'm a little OCD like that I I was uber conscious of how I worked the yarn. 

Another helpful tip I learned from a futorial was to stretch the row below the row on your arm by placing your fingers in the lower loops and giving a gentle tug. This helps distribute the yarn more evenly. As you can see in the picture, I have tiny wrists and it can become easy to make the loop only as big as where you are placing the yarn. This gets tight as you slide the row up your arm, so I recommend being a little generous when making your loops on your arm. Not only is it more comfortable, but it also leads to a more uniform row. 

Binding is the final step of the process. This also took a few watches of the tutorial for me to fully understand.  Turns out it was pretty simple and didn't take long at all to finish up.  

Not bad :)

Next up- boot cuffs.  I have found some knitting tutorials, but also have an idea or two up my sleeve for  an easy DIY for these fun little accessories.  I'm hoping to try them out today.

Stay warm!

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