Monday, November 5, 2012

Swing scarf

"You walk, it swings"

Swingy cords with little weights on the bottom adorn the most ancient garments ever found, and these retain their allure right up the present day.  Swing scarves are made entirely out of I-cord, with various weights on the bottom of each cord.  The weights make the cords swing when you walk--very pretty.

You can knit the I-cords by hand, or with an old-fashioned spool knitter but I recommend using an I-cord mill. With the mill, you can make a whole scarf in a single afternoon--very good for wardrobe additions or last minute holiday gifts.  The I-cords are not sewn together, but attached by a new method called "interweaving."  Interweaving makes a fine flat seam which does not show on the outside.  Interweaving is also very quick.

Any sort of sock-weight yarn works well, and Swing Scarves are a great way to use up odds and ends.  If you're buying yarn to make these, long-color-repeat yarns, like Crystal Palace mini-mochi, make lovely color-coordinated scarves: each cord features a gradual fade from one color to another, and so brings out the real beauty of these yarns.  Another way where Swing Scarves really shine is hand-painted yarns with colors which look SO lovely in the skein, but just don't play nicely together when knit up.  Because the I-cord is so thin (4 stitches per row) the colors can't pool and make icky designs. Swing Scarves are a truly good way to use up that hand-painted sock yarn which just can't seem to find a home in other patterns.

There are a great variety of little weights you can put at the bottom: beads, buttons, old subway tokens, shells, silver rings, Oriental coins--anything with some holes and a little weight.  Because of the pretty weights, swing scarves are a little bit like jewelry.

  • You can see more projects made with this pattern on the Swing Scarf Ravelry page.
  • The pattern has 7 pages and costs $3.50.
  • Here's a peek at the cover and the pattern:

I hope you will have as much fun knitting and wearing these as I have had inventing them and writing the pattern.

Good knitting!

Addendum:  A lovely commenter, Lynne, found this you-tube video, showing how to make industrial quantities of I-cord using a power drill to spin an I-cord maker. If a person wanted to make all their holiday gifts in a day or so, or make tons of scarves for an art fair, this would be the trick to use!  Check this out:

Thanks to Lynne for the link, thanks to Dutch Hollow Acres for the video!