When “pretty” and “speedy” come together, we’re in the sweet spot of gift knitting!

Pretty Speedy Cowls | Purl Soho

Instead of a marathon that drags into the wee hours, making our Pretty Speedy Cowls is more like an evening trot around the block, a blissfully stress-free solution to creating something special at the eleventh hour.

Pretty Speedy Cowls | Purl Soho

These little sweeties convey care rather than expedience thanks to their soft and supple feeling and simple beauty. Not stifling or scratchy, they’re made to be appreciated long after the wrapping paper comes off!

Pretty Speedy Cowls | Purl Soho
Pretty Speedy Cowls | Purl Soho

We knit up our Pretty Speedy Cowls in three different ribs: a very easy 2×4 rib and the slightly more challenging spiral rib (below) and open mock cable rib (above). None are more than an advanced beginner can handle, and all charming in their big-stitch boldness!

Pretty Speedy Cowls | Purl Soho
Pretty Speedy Cowls | Purl Soho

The softness, the beauty, and, of course, the done-in-a-wink-ness are all thanks to our wonderful Woolly Wool. A single-ply super bulky in a 200-gram skein, you only need one to make two Pretty Speedy Cowls. Yup, one skein makes two cowls, which means two make four, three make six. You get the idea…. Lots of pretty cowls, not a lot of skeins, and almost no time at all!

Pretty Speedy Cowls | Purl Soho
Pretty Speedy Cowls | Purl Soho

Designed for Purl Soho by Joelle Hoverson.

Share your progress and connect with the community by tagging your pics with #PurlSoho, #PurlSohoBusyHands, #PurlSohoPrettySpeedyCowls and #PurlSohoWoollyWool. We can’t wait to see what you make!

Materials

Pretty Speedy Cowls | Purl Soho

NOTE: One skein is enough to make two cowls in any of the three stitch patterns!

We used three different colors for our cowls…

  • 2×4 Rib Cowl: Sea Turtle
  • Spiral Rib Cowl: Blossom Pink
  • Open Mock Cable Rib Cowl: Peach Lily

Gauge

6½ stitches = 4 inches in stockinette

NOTE: We used US 19 needles to achieve this gauge, but different knitters may find smaller or larger needles work better for your style of knitting. More important than needle size is getting the correct stitch gauge so that your cowl will be plump and stretchy. If gauge is a new concept for you, our All About Gauge tutorial is a helpful primer!

Size

Finished Dimensions: Approximately 18½ inches around x 9 inches high, relaxed

NOTES

RT (RIGHT TWIST)

NOTE: Our Mock Cable Rib tutorial demonstrates this technique!

Knit 2 together and leave stitches on left needle, insert right needle between 2 stitches just worked and knit first stitch again, slip both stitches from left needle together. [2 stitches on right needle, no decrease or increase]

SLIP STITCHES

Slip all slipped stitches purlwise with yarn in back.

PSSO (PASS SLIPPED STITCH OVER)

Use left needle to lift slipped stitch (third stitch on right needle) over first two stitches and off the needle. [1 stitch decreased]

STITCH MULTIPLES

The 2×4 Rib and Spiral Rib Cowls are worked over a multiple of 6 stitches.

The Open Mock Cable Rib Cowl is worked over a multiple of 5 stitches.

PATTERNS

2×4 Rib Cowl

Pretty Speedy Cowls | Purl Soho

Cast on 30 stitches. We used a basic Long-Tail Cast On.

Join for working in the round, being careful not to twist the stitches. Place marker for beginning of round.

Round 1: *K2, p4, repeat from* to end of round.

Repeat Round 1 until work measures 9 inches from cast-on edge, or to desired length.

Bind off in stitch pattern.

Weave in ends and gently steam block, if desired.

Spiral Rib

Pretty Speedy Cowls | Purl Soho

Cast on 30 stitches. We used a basic Long-Tail Cast On.

Join for working in the round, being careful not to twist the stitches. Place marker for beginning of round.

Round 1: *K4, p2, repeat from * to end of round.

Round 2: *[RT (see Notes)] 2 times, p2, repeat from * to end of round.

Round 3: Repeat Round 1.

Round 4: *K1, RT, k1, p2, repeat from * to end of round.

Repeat Rounds 1–4 until piece measures 9 inches from cast-on edge or to desired length, ending with Round 4.

Bind off, working Round 1.

Weave in ends and gently steam block, if desired.

Open Mock Cable Rib

Pretty Speedy Cowls | Purl Soho

Cast on 30 stitches. We used a basic Long-Tail Cast On.

Join for working in the round, being careful not to twist the stitches. Place marker for beginning of round.

Rounds 1 and 2: *K3, p2, repeat from * to end of round.

Round 3: *Slip 1 (see Notes), k2, psso (see Notes), p2, repeat from * to end of round. [24 stitches remain]

Round 4: *K1, yarn over, k1, p2, repeat from * to end of round. [30 stitches]

Repeat Rounds 1–4 until piece measures 9 inches from cast-on edge or to desired length, ending with Round 4.

Bind off, working Round 1.

Weave in ends and gently steam block, if desired.

Pretty Speedy Cowls | Purl Soho
Pretty Speedy Cowls | Purl Soho
Pretty Speedy Cowls | Purl Soho