Imagine you’re in a bustling cafe with woven rattan chairs set around a table just big enough for you and your closest confidante… Très charmant! Be transported there anytime with our breezy Bistro Cowl, featuring a clever linen stitch variation reminiscent of those classic bistro chairs.

Bistro Cowl | Purl Soho

You may be surprised that to create this color play you only use one color at a time and simply alternate knit and slip stitches. No purling, no floats, no fuss, and no shenanigans!

Bistro Cowl | Purl Soho

Cotton Pure’s satisfying smoothness and earthy, cool touch make this cowl perfectly light for warmer weather. One hundred percent organically grown, this cotton is also unmercerized, which makes it soft and supple with a pleasing matte finish.

Bistro Cowl | Purl Soho
Bistro Cowl | Purl Soho

We just added 10 exciting new colors to the Cotton Pure collection, including Violet Orchid (paired here with Peach Peony) and Brown Date (paired with Alabaster Cream). You now have over 30 colors to choose from!

Bistro Cowl | Purl Soho
Bistro Cowl | Purl Soho

If you want to make the woven rattan pop to the foreground, choose a light color for Color B and a more saturated one for Color A. Pick up two skeins of each, and travel to that cafe in your mind every time you wear your Bistro Cowl!

Bistro Cowl | Purl Soho

Designed by Purl Soho designer, Hiromi Glover. Click here to see even more of Hiromi’s work!

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


Bistro Cowl | Purl Soho
  • Purl Soho’s Cotton Pure, 100% organically grown cotton. Each skein is 279 yards/ 100 grams.
    • Color A: 2 skeins; approximately 335 total yards required. We used Violet Orchid for one sample and Brown Date for the other.
    • Color B: 2 skeins; approximately 555 total yards required. We used Peach Peony for the Violet Orchid sample and Alabaster Cream for the Brown Date one.
  • US 7 (4.5 mm), 40-, or 47-inch circular needles
  • A stitch marker or scrap yarn


30 stitches and 49 rounds = 4 inches in stitch pattern


Finished Dimensions: 56 inches circumference x 10½ inches tall



This pattern is worked over an odd number of stitches.


Slip all slipped stitches purlwise with yarn in front (wyif).


Be sure to carry non-working yarn up the inside of the work when you switch colors. For a few tips, visit our Stripes in the Round Tutorial!


With Color A and using a basic Long Tail Cast On, cast on 419 stitches.

TIP: When you’re casting on so many stitches, it really helps to place a marker or piece of scrap yarn every 50 stitches. That way, when you lose count (which you will!), you won’t have to recount all the stitches. Just remember to remove these markers when you work the first round.

Place a stitch marker and join for working in the round, being careful not to twist the stitches.

Round 1: With Color A, *k1, slip 1 (see Notes), repeat from * to last stitch, k1.

Round 2: With Color B, *slip 1, k1, repeat from * to last stitch, slip 1.

Round 3: With Color B, *k1, slip 1, repeat from * to last stitch, k1.

Round 4: With Color A, *slip 1, k1, repeat from * to last stitch, slip 1.

Round 5: Repeat Round 3.

Round 6: Repeat Round 2.

Repeat Rounds 1–6 until piece measures approximately 10½ inches from cast-on edge, ending with Round 1.

Cut Color B.

With Color A, repeat Round 4 one more time.  

Bind off in pattern as for Round 1.

Weave in ends and gently wet block.

Bistro Cowl | Purl Soho
Bistro Cowl | Purl Soho