A Well-Traveled Finished Object: The Mountains Between Us Cowl
When I was a kid, I hated to travel. Now, as an adult, I love long car rides and plane trips and look forward to the journey itself almost as much as the destination. What’s changed? Well, the rise of audiobooks and my increased appreciation for scenery sure hasn’t hurt. The biggest change, though, is the fact that I’m now a knitter. A long, uninterrupted stretch of knitting on an airplane or in the car is one of my favorite things . . . especially if I have a project like the Mountains Between Us Cowl to work on.
I recently took this tubular cowl kit on a road trip across the Rocky Mountains, which is fitting, as the colorway was inspired by Rocky Mountain wildflowers and named for the mountains which divide the two collaborators: Lux Adorna Knits in Boise, Idaho and Interweave here in Fort Collins, Colorado. It was an absolute pleasure to work on while driving through Colorado.
What exactly makes this particular cowl knitting pattern such a great road trip project? Where to begin?
1. Cashmere Yarn, Baby
The Mountains Between Us Cowl is a truly luxurious project, worked in 100% cashmere yarn from Lux Adorna Knits. Lux Adorna is committed to “Putting Colorful Luxury into the Hands of Creative Makers.” They seriously live up to that mission with their cashmere Fun Size Bundles, which feature 8 mini-skeins of sport-weight yarn braided together in an attractive presentation.
Now, if you’re hesitant to bring cashmere yarn on a road trip, I hear you. I was worried, too, and I was maybe a little bit aggressive with others in my desire to keep all crumbs, splashes, and spills well away from my project. The key is to know thyself: are you capable of shielding that cashmere from a hostile world of potential stains? I believe in you.
Plus, the packaging of the yarn will help you keep your project safe. You’ll only be working with one mini-skein at a time, so the rest can stay braided together (for the first repeat of stripes) or in little hand-wound balls in your bag, safe and sound.
2. A Really, Really, Really Repetitive Stitch Pattern
There’s a time and a place for complex lace charts and patterns that require a lot of counting. A road trip or plane flight is usually not it. Simple chevrons, on the other hand . . . bingo.
The pattern for The Mountains Between Us is so easy they printed it on the yarn label. The only parts that slowed me down were take-off and landing . . . that is, the provisional cast-on and the easy graft at the end. Maybe plan to do those steps when you aren’t in a moving vehicle. After a row or two of knitting the chevron body of the cowl, I had the pattern memorized and was knitting on autopilot.
3. A Finished Object Packed with Memories
The real power of this cowl as a road trip project didn’t come to me until after I was back home again and the cowl was finished. As I was admiring my finished object a few weeks after my trip, I found that I had knitted sweet memories of the drive into the very fabric. Each stripe of the chevron cowl is now tied to sights, sounds, and conversations I experienced along the way.
This happens to some extent with just about any project (“Oh, I remember when I was knitting the sleeves of this sweater, I was watching season three of Game of Thrones“), but something about those big thick stripes really captured the essence of that happy road trip.
If I were you, I would make The Mountains Between Us Cowl Kit your holiday travel WIP. It’ll happily keep you company on your way home and back for the holidays, and you’ll feel no pressure to give this fabulous treasure away because, by the time you finish it, the holidays will be over!
What’s your favorite kind of project to bring with you on a road trip or plane flight? Let me know in the comments!
Yours in Stitches,