Not without a star


Pattern: Berlin Scarf by Leah Mitchell
Yarn: Ella Rae Kamelsoft (75% merino, 25% camel), colorway Orange
Needles: U.S. 8 Signature straights

On World Wide Knit In Public Day, as celebrated in Little Rock on June 19, I started this brioche stitch scarf. Beside me was my daughter. Around me were the knitters of Central Arkansas. My fingers quickly fell into the brioche rhythm: slip, yarn over, knit two together. Repeat, pausing every 88 yards to spit-splice the next ball of yarn in, until the scarf is 62″ long. Bind off.


Wait, that’s not all there is to it. Take the scarf to every faculty meeting and strategic planning meeting for a solid month. Knit through at least three church services. Turn on the automatic brioche stitch reflexive movements portion of the brain in waiting rooms, idling cars, coffeeshops. Knit two or three inches every time a mental health moment is needed.


Indulge your tactile sense every time you pull the scarf in progress out of its tote bag. Squeeze it. Pull the ribbing gently apart, let it relax back into its compressed state. Stretch it lengthwise just a bit, and watch the stitches even out. Roll it up and let it fill both hands like a miniature cloud.


Imagine the college student who will open a Valentine’s Day package next winter and pull out five feet of cozy warmth. Wrap it around your child’s neck, and think about how you’d want someone to care for her with gifts of love and time and shelter from the elements if you couldn’t do it. Set it on your shelf next to the other scarves that have give you so much pleasure in the knitting, and look forward to the pleasure of giving.

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