5 Modern Stripe Knit Scarves

Is it just me, or does the knitting world gravitate toward stripes these days? Stripes give you options to use up stash remnants, but there are plenty of ways to stripe your knits without heading down the nautical or circus themes. The modern knit scarf has plenty of contemporary options, as I admire in these five knit patterns.

Alanna Nelson suggests Stephen West Modern Stripe Knit Scarf

Stephen West’s Striped Esjan

Stephen West’s Esjan originally was published in 2011. Last year, he released a striped version, which gives knitters a fun opportunity to mix textures (shimmery yarns, anyone?.

Alanna Nelson suggests modern knit scarves

Suvi Simola’s Filmstrip

Suvi Simola’s Filmstrip uses short rows to create stripes in her triangular shawl.

Alanna Nelson knits modern striped scarves

Metronome by Julia Farwell-Clay

Want to knit a larger striped scarf? Julia Farwell-Clay’s Metronome uses intarsia to accomplish a contemporary striped style. Both of these scarves would look great in those gradient packs that you forgot you bought….

Alanna Nelson Knit Scarf Project Recommendation

Edison by Lynn Di Cristina

Edison by Lynn Di Cristina has the advantage of no short rows, no make 1 (I answer questions about this every week). I haven’t knit it yet, but it looks like an enjoyable evening knitting project…. rhythmic, gratifying and similar to Color Affection by Veera Valimaki.

Iceberg Folly

Iceberg Folly 7/2014 is a free form knit

Free form knitting inspired by landscape Iceberg Folly is striped, beautiful and guided by one knitter’s experience. How modern is that? Having just checked out Lea Redmond’s Knitting the Sky, I think this finished object is a wonderful expression of just how modern and personal stripes can be.

Will you be knitting striped scarves this summer? With gradient packs in the stash and Josh Bennet’s Hell’s Kitchen on the needles, it looks like stripes are in my queue. Oh, and don’t forget my Zick Zack, which popped out of hibernation last weekend.

When a knitter ultimately leaves her stash

On March 1,  I planned to blog all about Downton Abby and fashion and the parallels in 2016. Fresh from a fabulous holiday in the Grand Canyon with a day spent shopping, exploring and pool side lounging in Las Vegas, I was ready to move on to the next adventure.

Great tassel decoration at the Wynn Las Vegas

Fabulous tassels found all over the Wynn Resort

Was I ready to hear that two of my knitting clients from Sit and Knit died the day before? No.

Through reason and experience, I understand that death is integral to life. Therefore, grief is just as integral for those left behind. Does it make it less painful? No.

I cherish the memories,  challenges and successes these women brought to class. Thank you for being part of my Wednesdays, Dottie and Nancy.

As the Sit and Knit community searches for ways to honor and remember these women, it leads me to a related topic….Our families are often at odds with what to do with the stash left behind.

If you have a hobby or collection, take time to give general instructions about how you’d like your stash to be distributed. It wouldn’t hurt to have it written down, designating perhaps a stash executor. Don’t forget to update it on occasion. My stash has changed significantly in the last 10 years. Time to follow my own advice, right?

More on that later, but for the past couple weeks, grieving has been part of my return from vacation.

Knitting for my Fitbit Flex

The Fitbit Flex entered my life in August, 2014 as I trained for a half marathon. Sweet hub thought it would help me track mileage when we traveled. It was perfect for that! During the first 6 months, I wore the tracker while exercising, but when a college room mate became a fitbit “friend,” the tracker and its silicone band became part of my daily routine.

Knitting alternate bracelets to hide the tracker sounded appealing. My penchant for items both beautiful and useful definitely was tested with the Flex. Silicone stripes on my wrist are fine for active sports, but every day? I’ve mixed them in with other bracelets, hid it under sleeves, and finally cast on my own knit bracelet from remnants of my Thorn.


So glad that #beadgallery is an easy lunch hour walk. New @fitbit bracelet in the horizon! #lunchhourfun

A photo posted by Alanna Nelson (@tactiletravels) on

Accepting my obsession with getting an adequate number of active minutes is not a bad thing! I’ve frequently gone for walks after dinner to make sure I hit my 10,000 steps. It’s kept me hopping up from the computer and standing or walking while knitting. Active is good… so the Fitbit will be both beautiful and useful when I get done knitting the bracelet.

#wip #knittersofinstagram #fitbitflex bracelet made with @Claudiahandpaint silk lace weight yarn

A photo posted by Alanna Nelson (@tactiletravels) on

This week, I heard an interview with Christina d’Avigno of Ringly on the radio. Ringly makes rings that keep you in touch with your phone, allowing you to keep it nearby (within bluetooth range) but not glued to you… as perhaps my hub might prefer. I would definitely consider a Ringly type bracelet…. although I’m not interested in the Apple Watch, mainly because their design isn’t my style.

It got me thinking about knitting and tech… is there a possibility that a whole new range of knitting patterns could ensue that blends wearable knitting projects that blend with tech?

I will resist #bangoutasweater, I will.

Corrections to my Master Knitter Level 3 are back.

Wow! I had no idea it would be so quick.

Let’s not talk about that right now.

Carefree rambling from one project to the next is a pleasure. Leading the Knit a Long at Sit and Knit for the Aidez sweater, knitting for a baby, continuing the mittengeddon, and not to mention adventures in wet felting and quilting has made a jovial January.

A dear knitting buddy forwarded the Mason Dixon #bangoutasweater knit a long. The brigade of knitters kicks off tomorrow, knitting Mary Jane Mucklestone’s Stopover.

Alanna Nelson resists knitting Mary Jane Muckleston Stoipover

Stopover by Mary Jane Muckleston (photo by Kathy Cadigan)

So sweet! Such a quick knit!

But I just banged out a super bulky cowl. That will have to do.

I shall live vicariously through others’ Instagram feeds. I will resist!

Seduced by Softwaves Magnum

One of the InStitches knitters brought Laura Irwin’s Softwaves Magnum to class last week.

Alanna Nelson pattern alterations for Softwaves magnum

Laura Irwin Softwaves Magnum

Simple knitting, large needles, super bulky yarn… what more could you ask for? This was a great mindless knitting project that would result in an interesting addition to my winter wardrobe. And a fun addition to the present shelf, too!

This week, her scarf was knit and it was time to sew it together. While the instructions are clear, it was the Flickr photo stream that finally made the second step of the construction clear.

I am smitten. Having already searched my stash for super bulky yarn and come up empty, I began to consider what makes this cowl work. Of course it’s the weight of the yarn, but equally important is a single ply for the structure. Sticky yarn would be difficult to drop…. unless you didn’t do the drop stitch.

What if I cast on 100 st, worked garter for 3 rows, wrapped one row double then dropped it in the next? Bind off, then sew together?
Oh, I’m ready to buy some super bulky yarn and find out.

Restocking the present shelf

Do you have a present shelf? The spot in the closet dedicated to last minute hostess gifts, birthday presents and things you just can’t justify giving yourself so you buy it to give to others? At my house, the present shelf materialized while living in Italy. During visits to America, I would stock up on English language books and goodies for the girls to give at birthday parties. We’ve grown out of that tradition, but the present shelf continues. Contents range from EVOO available at Giardini di Sole, textiles gathered during travels and of course, hand knitted items.

Hand knitted items on the present shelf headed out to support Jules’ Struck Girl Scout Gold Star Project in October, so the shelf is quite bare. Knit scarves are an ideal present shelf item. With so many knitters obsessed with scarves and shawls and with me hanging out and nurturing knitters eight hours a week, it’s difficult not to catch scarfitis. Mindless scarves, technique building scarves, spring scarves, winter scarves, scarves to layer… you get the picture.

So how will I restock the present shelf?

Alanna Nelson Boston Knits Nancy Marchant design Icicle

Icicle by Nancy Marchant

Icicle by Nancy Marchant gives me a chance to begin playing with her two color brioche knitting book and creating a hopefully gender neutral scarf. I picked up some great yarn at Circle of Stitches after visiting the PEM Native Fashion Now exhibit. I chose a deep plum to combine with gold, but have yet to cast on.

Knitting Fresh Brioche: Creating Two Color Twists and Turns uses different vocabulary and could definitely fill my winter with opportunities to swatch. Having received this book for Christmas, I’ll begin with one color swatches, enjoying the process and eventually end up with

BTW, the thought provoking, tactile tempting exhibit at the Peabody Essex Museum features great curation and interesting textiles.  Highlighting how heritage and global mish mash struggle in a world with boundaries, borders and limitations left me contemplating perspectives of native designers. Hmm… are there any audio books on native american cultural expression in the 21st Century so I could listen as I knit?


Alanna Nelson Boston knits Bristol Ivy designs

Sallah by Bristol Ivy

A survey of my stash yields plenty of options for sock weight yarn scarves. Sallah by Bristol Ivy could be the right choice for many of these skeins.  One of the Sit and Knit knitters has this on the needles, so I’ve been living it vicariously through her for the past couple of months. No casting on yet… I’ve still got a zick zack scarf on my needles, so in the mindless category, I’m probably set for a while.


Fabulous wind: we’re keeping up with the tug! @bostonsailingcenter #knitstagram #ravelry #zickzackscarf

A photo posted by Alanna Nelson (@tactiletravels) on

The present shelf doesn’t need to be restocked overnight.