After a small handful of successful “beginner” level projects, and while still considering myself a beginner level knitter, I couldn’t help but dabble in lace knitting. I have always admired the intricate detail and femininity of lace. (This being in cakes and fashion!) It perhaps is no surprise that I’d decide to jump right into this as my next step in knitting. I picked out the Waverton Cowl by Kate Atherley as my first lace knitting project for a couple of reasons.
- Cowls are relatively small projects.
- The design has a small lace repeat across the entire surface, which means repetitive practice.
- The cowl is knit in a worsted (medium) weight yarn, and it is generally easier to work with a yarn that’s not too fine or too bulky.
- This is a practical cowl for everyday winter use. It’s warm, functional, and also beautiful (because lace).
- The pattern is free on Craftsy and includes video lessons! Get it here.
Knitting the first half of the cowl was slow going. I had to redo a number of rows and spend a good portion of time fixing mistakes. Lace takes some concentration to keep track of where you are, and looks complicated. With practice however, I eventually could see how to read my stitches to identify mistakes and fix them. That being said, in a way lace is easier than it would seem. It really just consists of strategically placed holes, stitch increases, and stitch decreases in repeating patterns.
The project is knit in Cloudborn Superwash Merino Worsted Twist Yarn, a warm but soft 100% merino wool that’s machine washable . The colour is slate heather, which goes with everything. This pattern features a delicate chain along the side of a lace diamond motif.
In the end, although it was a bit slower to knit, my first lace piece was a success!
I learned a number of new techniques with this project other than lace knitting in general, including how to read charts. In fact, I now prefer charts over written instructions for lace. I also learned some new stitches (k2tog, yo, ssk, k3tog), and the Russian lace bind off.
Difficulty: Adventurous Beginner
- Knitting in the round
- 1×1 rib stitch
- Basic lace stitches – k2tog, yo, ssk, k3tog
- Russian Lace bind off