emPower Cowl: Crochet

The emPower People craftivism initiative sums up my personal beliefs rather succinctly. I believe symbolism carries heft, a visual signifier of the kind of person you are. I am very selective about the symbolism I choose to adorn myself with. Making, and wearing, this cowl isn’t a flippant decision to make the new “it” thing. It, the symbolism of this cowl, embodies the beliefs I live daily; even if I’m not plastering them all over the internet.

With that stated, the creation of this project was significantly easier than my choice to make it. I wanted to try the crochet version, as I’m working on some larger projects and wanted something I could work on between larger commitments. The pattern says 3-5 hours, I say this is accurate. I think I spent 4 hours making it. Its intersectional to so many things I enjoy: social justice, stash busting, cowl, and purple.

The pattern uses a really clever no-turning-chain construction. You don’t do anything weird, just HDC into the first stitch. This does create a “hidden” stitch that is easy to forget. I have a small section near the beginning that I omitted this stitch accidentally. It wasn’t too noticeable, so I just carried on without fixing it.

if you look REALLY close, you can see my error on the left side

Lets talk about the yarn, shall we? Its stash, deep stash. I love the color, I dyed it myself back in 2009. I used to want to be an indie dyer. While I love the color, they yarn itself isn’t too soft, not scratchy. More like RUGGED, while still being plump. Its a wool/nylon blend, heavy fingering/sport in weight. It has CRAZY sharp stitch definition, minimal halo. I worked the project up on an H/5mm hook. There isn’t considerable drape, considering the smaller weight paired with a larger hook. This may change somewhat after a bath in wool wash and vinegar, I had some color transfer from the yarn when crocheting (hence the vinegar).

Laying flat, COMPLETE!!

I added a HDC border at the top, and a SC strip to cover up my seam. I just slip stitched on the “wrong side” (totally arbitrary as the cowl is the same on both sides), mostly because I finished this up before getting out of bed and I didn’t want to get up and get scissors and a yarn needle to do it right. I also wanted to use as much yarn as possible to get it out of my stash completely- 11 years is long enough.

No makeup selfie/gym clothes selfie. Lays nice!

So, to wrap it up: I love the message. I love the construction. I have a number of friends who also live these values. I will make this cowl again, and also try the knit and sewn versions as well. There are currently 5 versions available from the emPower site for free.


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