Thorndike Silk Scarf

While in New Hampshire, my mother and sister-in-law suggested we visit a flea market in the next town. This classic New England town has a wide grassy boulevard that divides the main street. On this particular Saturday, vendors set up tables around the perimeter of the granite-fenced greenbelt selling antiques, vintage housewares and to my delight a woman was unloading her fiber stash.

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I bought two small Harrisville peg looms, several skeins of beautiful heathered yarns and a small zippered pouch with two hand dyed silk caps. Beautiful, I thought to myself, I can use these for felting. On closer inspection, the pouch also had a printed insert identifying the source as Ellen’s 1/2 Pint Farm and a pattern for knitting a scarf directly from the silk cap. I’d never heard of this method, but since I was familiar with drafting silk and wool, the idea intrigued me.

Inspired by the Sea Tangles cardigan in Knitty’s summer issue, I decided to knit this with a deliberately non-traditional, meandering, undefined cable; sometimes pulling to the front, sometimes pulling to the back, sometimes inserting more than on e cable in a row and sometimes encouraging stitches to travel.

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Drafting the silk the correct amount took a little practice, but before long I was able to tease out an arm’s length at a time, knit a row and repeat. The rows I knit as a passenger on the way to Boston aren’t so great – you can tell my drafting suffered in the car, but overall the scarf is delightful. If you think knitting in public draws attention, trying drafting a big seafoam pile of fluff and knitting it with little ladybug needles to make heads turn.

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2 Responses to “Thorndike Silk Scarf”


  1. 1 Pork with Bones Sunday, November 16, 2008 at 10:19 pm

    Wow, I love that scarf! I’ve never heard of that technique before.

  2. 2 Josiane Wednesday, November 19, 2008 at 12:26 pm

    Your scarf is gorgeous! I love it!


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