Knitty: little purls of wisdom
beauty shot


I live by the ocean, the Atlantic Ocean to be exact. Every day its waves come crashing on to my black volcanic beach. I walk along the ocean almost every day; it is a source of great joy and inspiration to me.

When I saw the skein of Kauni Yarn I used in this scarf, I thought of the sea. The powerful waves of the open ocean, but also the calmer waters of the deep Icelandic fjords.

The sea is sometimes blue up here in the north to be sure. But it can just as well be green, steel grey, purple, red in the sunrise and sunset, white and perhaps the magical color octarine, that the fans of Terry Pratchett will readily recognize.

The frills on the scarf represent the endless waves on the vast ocean, and the name, Alda, means wave in Icelandic.

The sea is never the same, and Alda can be worn in many different ways. As a wrapped scarf, a mini stole, tied in one side, around the waist with a belt and even as a headpiece.

spacer model: Þórhildur Steinunn Kristinsdóttir
spacer photos: Harpa Jónsdóttir
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Length: approx. 25 inches
Width: approx. 6.5 inches



spacer Kauni 8/2 Effectyarn [100% wool; 656yd/600m per 150g skein]; color: W-EF; 1 skein

Recommended needle size
[always use a needle size that gives you the gauge listed below -- every knitter's gauge is unique]
spacer 2 US #2.5/3mm circular needles, 24 inches or longer

spacer Yarn needle



24 sts/34 rows = 4" in stockinette st
24 sts/36 rows (18 ridges) = 4" in garter stitch


[Knitty's list of standard abbreviations and techniques can be found here.]

Edge Stitches:
For all rows except Decrease Rows, slip last st with yarn held to back of work. When working the following row, bring the yarn around the first st to the back of the work before working the first st. This will create an edge that will look almost identical to garter stitch without slipped edge sts, except that the edges will hold their shape better and flare out less.

Using a circular or double-point needle, CO required number of sts.
Next Row: Instead of turning work around to work back on the WS, slide all sts to other end of needle, switch needle back to your left hand, bring yarn around back of work, and start knitting the sts again. I-Cord is worked with the RS facing at all times.
Repeat this row to form I-cord. After a few rows, work will begin to form a tube.

Instructions for the Backward Loop Cast On can be found here.


Designate one needle Needle 1, and the other Needle 2.

Using Needle 1, CO 300 sts.

K 7 rows (see Pattern Notes re. edge sts).

Decrease Row [RS]: [Sk2p] to end. 100 sts.

K 7 rows. Break yarn and set aside.

**Using Needle 2, CO 300 sts.
K 7 rows.

Decrease Row [RS]: [Sk2p] to end. 100 sts.

K 1 row.

Hold Needle 1 directly behind Needle 2 with RS facing (yarn tail is at right of work), so that sts on both needles are aligned.

Joining Row [RS]: *Insert tip of right needle into first st on Needle 2 and first st on Needle 1, k these 2 sts together; repeat from * until all sts have been joined.**

Using Needle 1, k 7 rows. Break yarn and set aside.

Work from ** to ** as for second ruffle.

Using Needle 1, k 1 row.

Buttonhole Row 1 [RS]: K4, *BO 2 sts, k3 (4 sts on right needle after bound off sts); repeat from * to end.

Buttonhole Row 2 [WS]: K4, *CO 2 sts using backward loop method (see Pattern Notes); k4, repeat from * to end.

K 4 rows. Break yarn and set aside.

Work as for second ruffle.

Work from ** to ** as for second ruffle.
K 1 row. Loosely BO all sts.

Work two lengths of I-Cord (see Pattern Notes), each approx. 11 inches long. When each cord is complete, do not bind off; sew live sts to edge of scarf, attaching one tie at each end of buttonhole rows.

Weave in ends and block as desired.

This piece has many wearing options; see photos for a few examples.


designernamespacer Harpa is an Icelandic writer who has been knitting for longer than she cares to admit. She loves to embroider insanely time-consuming pieces and likes to think of herself as a bit better photographer than she really is.

You can see her work and follow her crafty adventures here.