25 May 2011
Beyond the Pattern
I thought I'd have a little fun with one of my own patterns. This little travel pillow is just two repeats of the Serpentine Short-Round Scarf. You have to stuff it as you work, because once you've closed the section, you can't easily get back in to it. I was initially going to work 3 repeats, but it was large enough to fit around my neck at only two. Another variation would be to use a provisional cast-on, work four repeats, and graft end to beginning to produce a doughnut pillow. Such a shape could be folded in half for the neck pillow, but would also be good for sitting during long trips. I used less then one skein of red but, alas, just barely had to break into the second skein of blue. Also, I dropped down to a 3.5mm /US 4 needle so that the fabric would be dense enough to keep the polyester fiber fill from showing through or sneaking out.
Because the information isn't in the pattern, let me tell you how I made the tie cords. They are cable-plied. For each cord, I cut one length of blue and one length of red, about a yard long. Using a blunt tapestry needle, I threaded both strands through the last chain stitch at the corner of the pillow. I pulled the yarn ends even. In this way, I didn't need to figure out how to weave in ends on an already-finished pillow. Holding both ends of the red together, I twisted them opposite the direction of the ply twist until there was plenty of built-up twist. I then held the red in my teeth while I twisted the blue. Then I brought them both together and twisted them in the opposite direction to make them ply together. I could have made a kumihimo braid or an i-cord, but this is fairly quick and I am hopeful that all the layers of ply twist will give the cords enough strength to wear well.
By the way, I made this very Atlanta-appropriate by choosing red and blue. I think the triangle-motif and the colors very nicely coordinate with Atlanta-based Delta Air Lines.