I’m sorry it’s taken me so long to get this project out to you (it’s been in the store window for a couple of weeks already) – you know how it goes … Life! Anyway, I thought it would make a great little neck accessory as the temperature drops. I love little shoulderettes, they’re so cosy and are great for changing seasons.
This one is Getting Warmer, a FREE pattern, and we made it with a yarn that’s new for us, Illimani Llama II. Illimani is a little company located in Quebec that imports gorgeous yarns from South America, especially alpaca and other camelids, like llama.
The pattern is pretty straight forward and is fairly accessible for beginners (depending on your level of beginnerness, of course). The ‘special’ skills include knit & purl in the same row, working in the round on circular needles, decreasing, and reading a pattern. Basically, if you can make a hat, you can make a Getting Warmer. The project works up on 6mm/US10 needles, so I think it qualifies as a “small, achievable goal”.
BTW, many thanks to Adrienne for doing the heavy lifting on this project!
The yarn we used, Illimani Llama II, was a delight! It is super soft and is made from 100% de-haired llama, so it basically feels like baby alpaca (de-haired means that when the fibre is being processed the coarser parts of the coat are removed, leaving only the soft undercoat).
Other yarns options:
Berroco Vintage Chunky: three skeins of Berroco Vintage Chunky will get the job done with style and grace for people who are sensitive to wool or are really good at wrecking things by putting them in the washing machine.
Drops Brushed Alpaca and Silk: if you want mega texture, go for a super soft mohair effect with Drops Brushed Alpaca and Silk. For a loose, airy texture knit with a single strand (3 skeins), and for a denser, warmer fabric work with 2 strands held together (6 skeins). Both options are super affordable, from $18 to $36.
- Illimani Llama II: 3 skeins
- 6mm/US10 – 16″ needles
- 6mm/US10 – 24″ needles
- stitch markers
- Tapestry needle
- FREE Pattern
If you don’t already have these needles in your kit, you might be interested in some Knitter’s Pride Interchangeable needles: you just buy one set of 3.5″ tips and two cords, and it saves having to purchase two separate circular needles. But note, you MUST get shorter tips that are 3.5″ to 4″ long! Any longer and they won’t work with the 16″ cord:
- Knitter’s Pride 6mm/US10 – 3.5″ Interchangeable tips (Dreamz wood or Nova metal)
- Knitter’s Pride 16″ Interchangeable cord
- Knitter’s Pride 24″ Interchangeable cord
If you prefer Addi needles, they also make interchangeable tips that are the right length:
These shorter needles are ideal for making hats, neck things, baby things, and will always work with the longer cords from their respective brand. If you’re feeling like why not dive in and buy a whole set with a bunch of sizes (its usually more affordable than buying them one size at a time), here are a few brands who make them in the right size:
Short Interchangeable Needle Sets (with 3.5″ to 4″ tips)
- Addi Turbo Interchangeable Set – Short Lace Tips: 3.5mm/US4 to 8mm/US11
- Chiaogoo Twist Red Lace Interchangeable Set: 2.75mm/US2.5 to 10mm/US15
- Knitter’s Pride Dreamz Special IC Set: 3.5mm/US4 to 6mm/US10
- Knitter’s Pride Nova Plantina Special IC Set: 3.5mm/US4 to 8mm/US11
- Knitter’s Pride Ginger Wood Special IC Set: 3.25mm/US3 to 12mm/US17
- Knitter’s Pride Karbonz Carbon Fibre Special IC Set: 3.5mm/US4 to 6mm/US10
- Knit Picks Rainbow Wood Short Set: 3.5mm/US4 to 6mm/US10