The Sherwood Cowl

February 2, 2013


My adventures in knitting continue! I learned how to knit a little over a month ago and so far it’s developing into a beautiful friendship. People have been telling me I’m picking it up really quickly, and that’s probably because my grandmother (who died before I was born, unfortunately) was an incredible knitter. It’s just in my blood I guess! My grandpa is especially pleased that I’m continuing in her crafty footsteps, as you can imagine. Just trying to make you proud, Pops :)

This is my second completed project (well, 3rd if you count the 2nd headband I made for my friend) and since I’m not really good enough to read patterns yet, I made this one up myself. I’m calling it The Sherwood Cowl since it looks very “Robin Hood Chic” if I do say so, myself. Not like Men in Tights chic, but there’s definitely a Russell Crowe vibe going on here ๐Ÿ˜‰ ๐Ÿ˜‰


How dapper does my William look in his new cowl and baby snowflake clad hair? Very! Once I pried him away from his video games, he was a very good sport about modeling for me.



Don’t let him fool you. He’s a camera ham! Now you know where Lucille gets it from ๐Ÿ˜‰ lol



So how did I make it?

It’s really simple actually! I cast on 50 stitches, knit about 100 rows (so it’s a perfect square when folded), cast off, and then followed this awesome tutorial on how to make button loops. That’s pretty much it! I used US size 8 needles and Paton’s Classic Woolย in Moss Heather. I ended up using a whole skein plus a bit from a second. Paton’s makes awesome yarn for beginners because it’s really inexpensive and pretty darn soft actually for being a cheap wool. The buttons I found at a local yarn shop.


This is a superย versatileย cowl that would look great on any gender, so Wil shouldn’t be surprised if it goes missing in the near future ๐Ÿ˜‰


Now I’m feeling pretty comfortable with the basic knit stitch, so I have to practice my knit to purl transitions and the such so I can work towards my goal of knitting a sweater! Or maybe a sweater vest first. …one step at a time I suppose.

What are you knitting right now?


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  • Olivia
  • Juliana

    Ooh, nice! I’m making this after I finish the sweater that is taking up my size 8 needles!

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  • kya

    Hi there! I just wanted to check back in and let you know that I did knit your cowl for my husband (with a few mods) and you can see it on Ravelry! He really likes the finished product and I’m happy with the outcome too. Thanks again!

    • Rochelle New

      Kya, that’s so awesome!! I love your version :)

  • mandilynne

    I love that color and the buttons are sweet :) I am currently knitting my boyfriend (who’s name is also Wil haha) a very similar scarf with some really neat buttons I found in goodwill.

    • Rochelle New

      You have a Wil too, huh? That’s so funny!! I’d love to see your scarf when it’s finished :) I’m a fan of really neat buttons.

  • Lilly Warner

    Great post! Love the cowl and the conversation it started! I am also new to knitting. I made a scarf, two sets of wristbands that say “wild” on one and “free” on the other (for some girlfriends of mine that are “wild and free” ;). I’ll be blogging about those this week. Also started a ribbed scarf. All projects from Stitch and Bitch. I also really want to make a sweater eventually and feel almost ready to try it. Glad I read Mary’s comment about the Miette cardigan being an ambitious beginner’s sweater. Maybe I I will try that one!

    • Rochelle New

      Thanks Lilly! I’d love to see some of your projects! The Wild and Free wrist bands sound so cute. Are we friends on Ravelry, yet?

  • Amy Stewart

    You really are doing a great job! Have you joined yet?

    • Rochelle New

      Thanks, Amy! Yes, I’m LuckyLucille on Ravelry. We should be friends :)

  • Esme

    This came just in time, I’ve been hoarding some yarn that my bf pointed out he liked but I had no idea what to make him with it!

    • Rochelle New

      Yay! If you make one I’d love to see how it turned out! :)

  • sallieforrer

    Awesome! Wil looks very handsome in the cowl – but yeah, totally gender neutral and I’d be stealing it FOR SURE! Haha!

    • Rochelle New

      I know, right? ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • Jessica Cangiano

    Awesome job! I completely believe that certain traits can be inherited from those in our family, even if we never got a chance to meet them, and see no reason why there couldn’t be a knitting gene.

    โ™ฅ Jessica

    • Rochelle New

      Thank you, Jessica! I’m lucky to be blessed with a very creative family on both sides :)

  • kya

    Isn’t knitting fun? I was so terrible at crochet that I thought I’d never learn how to knit…but I was wrong! I have been knitting for 2 and a half years and I love it :) Just wanted to let you know that I saw this post on r/crafts on Reddit and my husband has requested it to be the next thing I knit for him. Nice work!

    • Rochelle New

      Kya! Thanks for stopping over to say hello :) I was the same way with crochet!! Which worried me because it’s supposed to be easier than knitting, but oh well. Yay for knitting! If you end up making one for your husband, please link me so I can see it :) Are you on Ravelry?

      • kya

        I think people assume that crochet is easier than knitting because it’s one hook instead of two needles. Two needles felt so much more natural to me, though! I had another go at crochet recently in order to make a simple chain to connect a pair of baby mittens, and it seemed a little easier now than when I first learned. I still don’t like it like I do knitting! Be patient and keep up the good work – I am knitting things now that seemed WAY too hard when I first started to learn. And yes, I am on ravelry as “kyalala”.

  • Rebecca Wagner

    that is adorable! wish I could knit.. my hubby would love something like this:)
    ps. your husband is a cuteey :) hehe

    • Rochelle New

      Thank you! Knitting definitely takes some patience. More patience than sewing I think, but once you get the basics it’s so fun! You should try it! Any yeah, he’s pretty cute ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • Ashley O’Shaughnessy

    You’ve only been knitting for a month? This is so awesome! And you made up the pattern yourself? Love it!

    • Rochelle New

      Thanks!! :)

  • Ginger

    Really cute! I love this!

    • Rochelle New

      Thank you :)

  • The garment farmer

    Yes, very dapper! I love the color and it looks great on your man.

    • Rochelle New

      Thanks, lady! :)

  • Sarah Gilbert

    I adore this cowl and want to make one! I am knitting another version of Quick Work in Thick Wool by Susan Crawford, but am substituting the diamond stitch for the twisted rib. :)

    • Rochelle New

      Oooo I love Susan’s patterns! I mean, I love looking at them because I can’t make any of those things at this point haha!! I can’t wait to see your project!

  • ozzyblackbeard

    Your cowl looks great! Good luck with the purling, I have no doubt you’ll be grand with it. At the minute I’m not knitting anything, which is very strange for me! I’m very tempted to cast on a pair of socks, but I’m trying to make a Granny Square blanket, so it’s crochet hooks for me just now.

    • Rochelle New

      Thank you! I love the way granny square blankets look! I tried crocheting once a long time ago but it didn’t end up well for me. Which is odd because I hear it’s supposed to be a bit easier than knitting? Maybe I need to give it another go someday…

  • KitteeBeeBerns

    I have two sweaters on needles right now! On is about 95 percent done, but I put it away last summer and have to sit down and figure out where the heck I am in the cable patterns. I’ve also just started the sleeves on a garter stitch raglan I made up with a bias angled button band! You can see them on my project page:

    Your cowl is super cute, keep it up!


    • Rochelle New

      I love your choice of color in all your Ravelry projects! So bright and fun!! Thanks for the support! Keep on inspiring me, please ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • Anthea

    That is a great cowl! I think my boyfriend would like it too! I started knitting ca. 1,5 years ago and it’s really addictive I can tell you!

    • Rochelle New

      Thanks! Yeah I think I’m addicted already!

  • Tasha @ By gum, by golly!

    Aww, that looks so fabulous on him! And look at you already breaking the “rules” and making up your own patterns. lol You should look up the book Knitting for Anarchists (not for the patterns but the info/theory/vibe), the author is a knitting master and I think you might really like it. :)

    • Rochelle New

      Thank you, Tasha! That book sounds right up my ally :) I’ll try to find a copy. Thanks for the tip!

  • monica

    Love it, and thanks for those tips about yarn and buttonholes. I am juuuust learning to knit, and was getting excited enough to look around online and it kind of killed my enthusiasm. So much to learn, and so few projects with a big bang for your effort. This is fantastic, and I really, really hope you continue to share the process of learning. I love that the skill was passed down, something to share… sweet.

    • Rochelle New

      I know what you mean, knitting can be ridiculously intimidating! Hang in there :) Are you on Ravelry? I found some great beginner patterns on there to get me started. Free ones, too! I’m not sure where you’re located but AC Moore is where you can find Patons yarn, as well as Lion Brand which is another great yarn for beginners. I will certainly keep sharing my progress :)

  • Rachel Proffitt

    OOoh, very nice :) I think my husband might like that even :)

    Right now, well I have a balaclava for my son, a jumper for a friend and a 1940’s turban on the needles. The pattern for the turban came from this site:

    Yes, I am a multiple project knitter!

    • Rochelle New

      Oooo thank you SO much for the link to that 40’s turban pattern!! That’s right up my ally :) I’d love to see yours when it’s finished!

  • Colleen Donfield

    I love that cowl! Definitely a Robin Hood situation. You and William look alike, I think. That’s nice.

    • Rochelle New

      Thanks! :) and you’re not the first person to mention we look alike actually. I’m not sure how I feel about that lol

  • Caitlin A.

    Looks amazing! Will is very handsome! :)

    • Rochelle New

      Thanks! …and yes. yes he is :)

  • annanic

    That looks great. I can’t believe it’s only your third project! Your tension is perfect. It’s been awhile since I learned to knit but I seem to remember knitting nothing but little bags and barbie clothes in garter and stockinette for a looong time. I just cast on my second sweater for the year (hoping to make it to 12 this year yikes!) and I’ve got a few other projects I’m slowly progressing on. Mostly just a pair of socks that won’t seem to get done. I guess that’s what happens when you never work on them haha. I look forward to seeing you progress as a knitter. I can already tell that you’ll move on to big things soon enough =) If you’d like you can see the sweater I just finished on Ravelry. My username is annanic. Or most of my recent knitterly adventures are blogged too Just keep at it Rochelle you’re doing great!

    • Rochelle New

      Thank you!! I just checked out your latest sweater and WOW!! I mean, seriously wow. Your work is so impressive! I’ve just added you on Ravelry :)

  • Jo

    Hey trust me, patterns aren’t hard to read and I’m sure you could pick it up easily!
    Nice job creating this pattern though, it’s simple and effective! Love the photos of your guy too!

    Right now I’m knitting a top called Mary Jane (it’s on my blog and on Ravelry). I’m really scared I’m going to run out of yarn though- hate that feeling!! My tip is buy an extra ball for peace of mind…. I sure wish I had, lol ๐Ÿ˜›

    It’s such a cute top though… isn’t knitting addictive? :)

    • Rochelle New

      Thank you! I’d love to see your current projects. Are we friends on Ravelry? If not, we should be! That’s a great tip, to buy extra yarn for piece of mine! And yeah, knitting is pretty addictive :)

      • Jo

        I’m pinkcatflower on Ravelry. I love getting friends on there too. Do you visit the friends activity feed on Ravelry? It is an awesome place to see what other people have been favouriting and get inspiration! :)

        You can see my projects here:

        or here:

        I need to update my progress on Mary Jane though, I’m almost finished the body! :)

        • Rochelle New

          Oh my gosh I LOVE LOVE LOVE your Milena sweater!!! Absolutely darling. I need to make one some day!

          • Jo

            Thank you! ๐Ÿ˜€ It was a lot of work, but you could totally make one. It would probably be your size too (it only comes in one size) :) Probably best to practice on easier stuff first? But I firmly believe you can do anything you set your mind to :) If you’re thinking of making Miette first, we can be pattern twins either way, since I’ve made both haha ๐Ÿ˜€

  • Meredith Schreiber

    That’s amazing! Great job lady! I would work on hats next so you can learn how to knit in the round and how to do decreases. I’m very impressed with your third project!

    • Rochelle New

      I’d actually like to make my brother a hat for his birthday coming up so I think that’s a great idea! I have a friend who’s much better at knitting than I am and she said she’d teach me how to knit in the round :) We’ll see how it turns out!

    • Rochelle New

      Oh, and thank you for the kind words of course! Maybe someday, with a million years of practice, I’ll be as good as you and your mama!

  • Mary Nease

    I’ve been working on the Portulaca cardigan from Craftsy’s Celtic Cables class. Learning cables has been pretty fun and interesting! I also have been working on a fair isle Gryffindor bag using color work for the first time. I discovered this Christmas that my grandma (who also died before I was born) did a lot of knitting and was amazing at color work. I’d like to think that I’m continuing a tradition as well. ^_^

    • Rochelle New

      I saw that class but it’s much too advanced for me right now. Maybe someday! I love fair isle and “old world” looking knits. That’s so neat your grandpa was a knitter! I’d love to see some of your knitting projects :) Are you on Ravelry?

      • Mary Nease

        Yes! I’m on ravelry, though I haven’t posted many projects yet. I’m almost done with my Gryffindor bag though! I think we’re actually already ravelry friends- I’m MerrytheKnight on there. I actually haven’t been knitting very long myself (I started in November), but I taught myself to read patterns by picking a harder project that used stitches I knew how to do. Good luck!

        • Rochelle New

          Oh hey, there you are! I can’t wait to see photos of your bag :) I definitely need to try some harder projects now. That’s the only way I’ll get better!

          • Mary Nease

            The Miette cardigan is a pretty good one to do once you know how to knit and purl. Working on it is how I learned to do increases and decreases. I remember seeing it classified on some other blog as an “ambitious beginner” sweater.

            Do you knit English or Continental? I learned Continental and had no clue that purling was considered hard until I discovered that most people knit using a different style.

          • Rochelle New

            I knit English because I’m left handed, but ambidextrous at most things, so English was the only way that felt comfortable for me when I was learning. I can knit, and I can purl, but trying to do variations of the two together isn’t down pat yet. Sometimes I get lost in my rows and forget when I switched! I really love the Miette and would love to make that one soon. Thanks for the suggestion :)

          • Mary Nease

            Give Continental a try! I’ve heard that it’s great for lefties because the yarn is controlled by the left hand. Then again, perhaps having the dominent hand reversed is the trick given that I’m right-handed and English knitting perplexes me to no end.

          • Rochelle New

            I’ll give it another try, but I really feel like my left hand is the slow learner in this knitting equation lol! Once I tried English I picked it up so much faster. I know a few other lefties who feel the same way so maybe it is a dominance reversal thing!