(I also blocked a couple of small cable swatches knitted from the same yarn, mentioned briefly at the end of this post. Basically, they're an excuse to try out cable patterns just for the fun of it, and I have nebulous plans to frame them for my craft room.)
As soon as the washed yarn was dry, I tested it against my neck. Tentatively... Cautiously... Reluctantly...
...Ick, it still itches! (~scratch shudder scratch~)
Not exactly surprising, but disappointing. That yarn would probably be ok for certain hat patterns, if the wearer is used to rustic, scratchy wool-- and it would definitely be fine for anything that won't be lying next to bare skin-- but while it's possible to wear the scarf I've already knitted, it's not the most pleasant texture to have draped against your neck (and possibly face). It just... prickles. Life's too short to waste on knitting a scarf I might not ever want to wear. (Especially since I've already done that once, apparently! (g))
As for the idea of simply doubling the width and making a couple of cushion covers (using the itchy yarn), I've reconsidered. It might work. I've seen examples from previous Advent scarves where knitters basically worked the pattern twice, side by side, to widen the scarf into a wrap. However, I'm not the most confident knitter around, so I'm feeling hesitant to improvise much with what is supposed to be a fun, carefree project. Also, I'm not a very fast knitter, either, and I'll probably have all I can do to try to keep up with the KAL as the pattern's written; doubling the daily stitch-count will definitely put it beyond my knitting speed ability.
All this to say that I caved and ordered some yarn!
I actually haven't bought much yarn for a pretty long time, so I'm trying not to feel too guilty about it-- especially as it should make this project so much more enjoyable. Besides, this was a fairly responsible yarn splurge-- no $20+ skeins (x however many skeins it would take to reach the yardage requirement).
I'm using a new-to-me yarn that I found while browsing Ravelry project notes-- Cloudborn Highland DK, available only through Craftsy (if I understand correctly). It's 100% "fine highland wool", and reports vary on its softness, but it seems much gentler than the prickly yarn I would've used otherwise. (If someone thought this wasn't soft, I wonder what they'd make of that other wool?!)
Should I admit that I even ended up copying that other Ravelry user's color choice? It wasn't intentional. I just decided I wanted something very neutral for optimal flexibility (and charming rusticity) and ended up gravitating toward that same color! It's called "Shaela Heather" and is a greyish beige. (That may not sound exciting, but if you want a neutral, it doesn't get much more neutral than that.)
Here's the yarn in the skeins:
I'll wind it into balls soon so I can knit the part of the pattern that has already been released. The first clue is coming soon-- November 24th! (That's just a week and a half away!!)
- - - - - - -
My blocking isn't perfect (neither is the knitting), but I like them.
#33, "Fancy Double O":
#95, "O Knot Ogee":
I might try to make a few more, at some point, but for now, this project is low down my list.