How To Make Schmutzie's Braided Scarf Of Much Magnificence

cat with yarn

See that? That is Álafoss Lopi Icelandic wool, which I shoved up against my mother-in-law's cat, Ginger. She is not all that crazy about me, but she hates moving out of a warm spot more, so she tolerated me wrapping strips of knitted yarn around her feet for a little while.

At first glance, you might have thought that she was relaxing in the afternoon sun, but take a look at her expression again. She is thinking: If I were five years younger and still had claws, I'd make quick work of your eyeballs, lady.

scarf in progress
Pretend that the above knitted strips are not sewn together along the edges as they are. That was an earlier stage of the scarf's development that was abandoned.

I bought the Álafoss Lopi Icelandic wool after I found an interesting scarf pattern on the internet, but by the time I got around to knitting, I had lost track of the pattern, so I kind of went with the flow, and it only took me one weekend to do it. Going with the flow meant that I knit three, five feet seven inch strips on 3¾ knitting needles that were each eleven stitches wide with alternating individual stitches of knit and purl, and then the rest of the pattern came to be as follows:
Schmutzie's Braided Scarf of Much Magnificence

· Cast on 11 stitches, or however many you like, depending on how wide you want to make your scarf. This pattern will end up being only two-thirds as wide as the full width of all three strips across, so keep in mind that you will want to make it wider than you want the finished product to be.

· Knit 1, purl 1 through every odd row.

· Purl 1, knit 1 through every even row.

· Bind off when the scarf has reached approximately five-and-a-half feet, depending on how long you want to make your scarf. The strips will be braided together, so keep in mind that you will want to make the strips longer than you want the finished product to be.

· Bind off.

· After you have knit three strips, pile them one on top of the other like a sandwich, and then sew them together at one end.

· Braid the strips together until they more or less match up at the end. When braiding, instead of lying the strips flat and curving them, fold them one over the other like origami.

· It is likely that one or more of the strips will be a touch longer than another at the end of the braid. Simply match up the ends as you did at the beginning of the braid, sew them together, and adjust the braid along the scarf to even out the tension of the strips.

· Add a fringe that is a minimum of six inches at each end. The thickness of the fringe is up to you.

cat in scarf

And then, of course, find the cat and wrap her up in your finished scarf. She will love you for it, because, with the yarn in this new configuration, it is much more constricting and hot, and cats love being overheated and unable to move freely under their own power. You can see how much Ginger is enjoying the situation.

scarf model 1

Here is the scarf in its full, fat glory on the Palinode. This was a practice run, so it is not perfect. The yarn is far too heavy and scratchy, so it resembles a thick rope more than it does a scarf and does not tie very well. I am going to knit another one with a finer, softer yarn that can actually be knotted properly around the neck.

I still love this one, though. I have put it on cats, furniture, windowsills, the Palinode, myself, and around plant pots. Mostly, though, I like to pile it up on the Palinode's head. Doesn't he look sweet?

scarf model 2

If you need any further instruction, which you might, because, let's face it, I wrote this while hepped up on sinus medication and may have missed a few things, feel free to ask me in the comments.

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