Not Martha

to make: my second scarf

detail of end, see how fuzzy?
detail of end, see how fuzzy?

detail of yarn with a quarter for scale
detail of yarn with a quarter for scale

the slit
the slit

wearing it

My second knitted thing came together in a small instance of synchronicity. I was at Fengari Yarn shop in Half Moon Bay (400 Main St., Half Moon Bay, CA 94019, (650) 726-2550) which I highly recommend if you’re ever out there. They had two balls of Geisha by Plymouth, a yarn I had been eyeing which fits into the non-wool, fuzzy, soft category nicely. I first saw Geisha in this review at Knitting, see how fuzzy it looks? The label recommends size 11 – 13 US needles, but it’s wrong, #10 US or possibly smaller would be more appropriate. But of course I didn’t know this at the time, so I needed to get #11 needles. I had been wanting to try Pony Pearls, but believed they only came in 14″ and 16″ lengths. Anything over 12″ makes my pinkies hurt. Fengari had 10″ Pony Pearls in US size 11! hooray! And they were a lovely bright orange color.

I wanted a warm scarf for my commute, and my sometimes cold office, and I wanted a pull-through slit so that it would be less likely to fly off in the wind and land in a sad little heap in the road, something which has happened to me a lot lately. And I had been eyeing this scarf at Banana Republic as a sort of aesthetic ideal. I decided to make a slit parallel to the length of the scarf and to use a seed stitch.


Geisha by Plymouth
on label:
100% microfiber nylon
77 yards/50 grams

Pony Pearls
size 11 US (would recommend US 10 instead)
10″ length

final pattern I used

– size 11 US needles

– two balls Geisha (may need more if doing a tighter gauge)

– use single strand

– cast on 21 stitches (or uneven number to width desired)

– knit one, purl one repeat all the way across row, ending with knit one

– repeat for each row until reach spot you’d like the pull through slit to be at (for me this was just past 1/3 of way through scarf)

– have extra ball ready (or end of ball you’re working on)

– knit half way through row (I went ahead and did 11 stitches)

– pause

– breathe

– pick up other ball of yarn and tie to the next loop you are about to work on not to the original strand of yarn

– leave a little tail to weave into the scarf later on

– continue across row with new ball of yarn

– flip over and work the 10 back to the mid point

– drop the new strand, pick up original strand of yarn and work the last 11 stitches with it

– what you are doing is stitching two swabs of fabric side by side

– get it?

– me neither

– try the diagram:


– watch your stitches through this area, it would be easy to be one off

– of course if you’re using a fuzzy yarn it won’t show anyway

– continue this until you reach the length of slit you deem appropriate, I did the width of the scarf

– when the slit is long enough, get to a point where you are beginning a row with the original strand of yarn, forget about the second strand, and just work all the way across and continue knitting as if nothing strange happened

– you should have a nice, tidy slit (hopefully)
ta da!

This yarn so fuzzysoft that I have been carrying it over to people and saying “touch my scarf!” I knew the needles were too big for the yarn when I started knitting, but I decided to use them anyway because I really really adore the Pony Pearls. They seem much softer than the Bryspun Flexibles, actually do warm up and are feather light, even as thick as they are.

Am I happy with the scarf? Yes. But. The wide stitches do (again) allow for the scarf to stretch itself thin. I think I would prefer something a bit more stiff. Also, the yarn isn’t a color I love, it was, however, what they had. Which gives me the perfect reason to make another! yay! For all the wispiness of Geisha it sheds not at all. It is nicely lightweight yarn, it doesn’t choke me from it’s weight the way certain other things I’ve made do. I haven’t given it a good washing yet, I’ll let you know if the scarf falls apart or not. I wove the ends in along the edges, and after a few days of wearing they haven’t poked out yet.

The yarn on the Pony Pearls did stick a bit, almost like it was squeaking. I’m not sure if I liked this or not. One last note: this is not a springy yarn the way you would expect a spun wool yarn to be. It has an unyielding center so it’s probably a bit trickier to knit with, but I didn’t have any problems, I’m willing to compromise for my non-wool-wearing self.

Next I’m going to try wooden needles, and either Sirdar Snowflake Chunky or a charcoal grey super soft alpaca which I found my boyfriend rubbing against his cheek at the shop. Recently he has been looking at me and saying, very slowly, “aaaaal paaaaaaa caaaaaaaaa”, which I think is a hint.


2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Susan Hiller // Jun 17, 2007 at 8:28 pm

    I’m making a scarf that requires two slits – one at each end. I can’t figure out why it calls for a second slit. It seems like it should have only one slit. Anyone have an idea about why it would need two slits? I found the pattern in Lion Brand Yarn Just Scarves book, which was published in 2005. The pattern is called Swiss Miss Scarf and appears on page 102-103.

  • 2 Kate // Jul 11, 2008 at 11:16 am

    I’m new to knitting and am always on the lookout for websites to aid me. The advice you had was very helpful. I wanted to pass along a video site I found that has a few basic knitting videos. I’m not sure if you’re interested in how to videos, but I found these useful when I was just starting out.

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