I've always been one of those knitters that is completely dependent on patterns for pretty much everything. Yeah, I can knit a vanilla sock without direction, but anything more than that and I'm completely, utterly lost.
So, one of my Fiber Goals for 2012 this year was to
Design a pattern and publish
The main reason for this goal was to help me escape from my comfort zone a little bit more and just try knitting something without a pattern for guidance. So, I decided to start simple, cast on a cowl, and see what happens.
And I ended up with my Spiral Secret Cowl:
Yarn: ~160 yarns of worsted or aran weight yarn.
Needle: One 16" circular needle, US 8.
Gauge: Not very important, to your liking.
Cast on 80 stitches loosely.
Place marker and join for round
Row 1: *K2, P2, repeat from * to end.
Row 2: P1, *K2, P2, repeat from*, ending in K2, P1.
Row 3: *P2, K2, repeat from* to end.
Row 4: K1, *P2, K2, repeat from*, ending in P2, K1.
Repeat rows 1-4 until cowl reaches 7" or until desired length and bind off loosely.
The final product is very warm with an attractive pattern. I think that you could use single ply handspun for this cowl very easily too.
I would not really count this as a pattern though, because it is so simple and easy. So, I'm not going to count this towards my fiber goal of designing a pattern. But I think that this is a huge step forward and next time I will be up for designing something more ambitious such as a sock pattern.
I really loved the yarn I used for this project. In fact, I enjoyed every part of working with it, which was a relief because I had never even heard of the brand before.
This yarn is Brown Sheep Lanaloft, which is a worsted weight, single ply yarn in 100% wool. I have no complants whatsoever with this yarn, and a majority of Ravelers seem to agree with me according to the star rating. Unlike most single ply yarns I've worked with (...Noro), the fiber isn't horribly overspun, but is not splitty. Also, at ~$7.50 for 100 grams and 160 yards, this yarn will now be my go to cheap wool instead of Cascade 220.
Also, look at that bright, happy yellow!