I designed this scarf when I was studying in Strasbourg, France. December in Strasbourg is abuzz with a Christmas market, German and French tourists, and blasts of arctic air. The secret to surviving the holiday season is generous servings of tarte flambée, plenty of mulled wine, and a thick, woolly scarf to keep your neck toasty as you ride your bike through Strasbourg’s narrow, cobblestone streets.
To keep myself warm while fitting in with the cosmopolitan students and professors at my university, I developed this ribbed scarf using a unique stranded technique to make it reversible. Each side of the scarf has a different traditional Fair Isle pattern.
The challenging part of this scarf is following the chart, because it doesn’t look like it makes sense on paper. But once you work a few rows, you can see the lovely Fair Isle snowflakes taking shape in your knitting.
A Brief FAQ With Helpful Hints
Q. As I knit, the contrast color (CC) yarn becomes really loose. How do I fix this?
A. You just need to tug the CC gently every few stitches (but not too tightly! That’s another problem) to make sure tension is consistent with the MC. It’s fiddly, but it works. Again, be careful not to tug too tightly!
Q. How far do I carry the CC - do I carry it to the end of the row?
A. No, but -- look to where the first CC stitch is on the next row, and that will tell you how far to carry the CC. For example, let’s look at rows 7 & 8 of the chart. In row 7, the last CC stitch is 7 stitches in from the edge. But in row 8, the first CC stitch is only 3 stitches in from the edge. So when you’re knitting row 7, knit the last CC stitch, then, as you work the next 4 stitches in MC, thread the CC behind the knit stitches and in front of the purls. At this point, hold the CC in back (don’t continue to carry it), work the last 2 stitches in MC, and turn. On row 8, work the first 2 stitches in MC. Now you’re at the 3rd st of row 8 - a CC stitch - and the CC that you held to the back from row 7 is in the right place.
Q. How do I weave in the CC ends?
A. Thread them through the purl and knit stitches, like you did while working the pattern. If you’re using any kind of a sticky yarn (which I definitely recommend for this pattern), that will be enough to hold them in place.
Any more questions? Feel free to PM me. Happy knitting!