Waaaaay back in summer 2009, our sister magazine Spin-Off published the Button-Up Neck Warmer by Mavis Adam, a simple, wrap-style neck scarf with a button closure. The editors invited readers to make their own versions from their handspun and submit them to the magazine, and boy did we get some beauties. (Spin-Off is full of great content for knitters, whether you're a spinner or not!)
Here are two of our favorite neck warmers. (The patterns for these versions of the neck warmer—plus six more—are in the spring 2010 issue of Spin-Off.)
|Alpaca Rose Neck Warmer by Unni Heineking of Hartsgrove, Ohio||Neck Warmer Revisited by Denise Bartels of Princeton, New Jersey|
Unni Heineking used fibers from three of her huacaya alpacas to spin yarn for her neck warmer. The brown and gray are natural colors and the rose is a white fleece Unni dyed with Kool-aid! Unni selected a slip-stitch pattern similar to the one for Mavis Adam's Button-Up Neck Warmer. A slip-stitch pattern produces a denser fabric, which helps the neck warmer to maintain its shape better around the neck, allowing the pattern to be displayed well. Unni chose the Harlequin pattern from A Treasury of Knitting Patterns by Barbara G. Walker, and added a row of single crochet along with edges of the scarf. The buttons are crocheted and stuffed.
Denise Bartels decided to use some hand-forged clasps that she made rather than buttons, which meant moving the closures. When she knitted a swatch of the slip-stitch pattern Mavis Adam used, she was disappointed with how it looked with her yarn (a worsted-weight Denise spun from Targhee wool), so she played around with some slip-stitch patterns and finally settled on the Double Brioche pattern from A Treasury of Knitting Patterns by Barbara G. Walker. Denise happily knitted up the neck warmer and was pleased with the texture and hand of the fabric. She sewed on the clasps and tried it on, only to realize that the neck warmer created a turtleneck tube that was not a good look for her. She ended up using only two of the clasps and placing them to create a V-neck opening that she felt was more flattering.
Why not try your hand at one of these cute neck warmers? You can download a free copy of the Button-Up Neck Warmer here. (And check the Spin-Off website for more calls for entries! You might just get your work published in Spin-Off!)
This is such a fun and versatile pattern—perfect for a quick gift, and it's also a wonderful way to use that skein of handspun that you've been saving in your stash. And be sure to subscribe to Spin-Off so you can get all of the beautiful, inspirational, and informative fiber goodness that Spin-Off specializes in each season.