Castilleja Cowl by Meaghan Schmaltz

Castilleja Cowl

February 2017
Fingering (14 wpi) ?
22 stitches and 34 rows = 4 inches
in garter stitch worked flat, after blocking
US 4 - 3.5 mm
400 - 430 yards (366 - 393 m)
One size: 21-inch neck circumference, 29-inch, shoulder circumference, 17-inches tall at front, 10-inches tall at back
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A 1-skein fingering weight cowl that highlights an oh-so-special skein of yarn with a little bit of garter stitch and a little bit of lacework.

The Story
Growing up, as a Girl Guide, I spent a lot of time outdoors hiking. One of the only plants I remembered distinctly was the Indian Paintbrush, Latin name Castilleja. When this Indian Paintbrush colorway came my way, it became only too clear that it deserved to be something as special as that wild plant from my youth.


  • Material Culture Fiber Arts Modern Era (sock/fingering weight; 75% superwash merino, 15% nylon, 10% tencel; 430 yds / 4 oz skein) 1 skein ‘Indian Paintbrush’
  • US 4 (3.5mm) 24” circular needle
  • Tapestry needle
  • Removable Markers (optional, for seaming)


  • This cowl is knit flat, starting at the Picot edge, and decreased to the top corner. The cowl is wet-blocked and them seamed post-blocking.

  • This pattern includes written instructions.

  • Adjust needle size as necessary to match gauge.

  • This pattern begins with a Picot Cast-On. If you prefer to work a non-decorative edge, a standard Long Tail Cast-On is recommended.

  • While detailed written instructions are provided for the Picot Cast-On, if you are unfamiliar with the technique, I recommend this video:

  • Two other Cast On methods are used in this pattern. Here are some helpful tutorial videos if you are unfamiliar with these Cast Ons:

  • The Knitted Cast-On:

  • The Cable Cast-On: