First off--It's the Pine TREE Cowl, not the Pine Cone Cowl. You'd think I'd get the name right the first time, but nope. My apologies for the error.
Ahem, now to knitting.
Having cast on this fluffy wonderfulness—more whip cream than marshmallow, I decided—I began working the very easy repeat with a smile on my face. I love repeats so easy and clearly stacked on each other that I don't need to fill my needles with stitch markers. Place each yarn-over to the left of the one below it for five rows (essentially—it is a bit more complicated than that but not much) then start over. Totally doable!
I’ll admit that after three sets of five-row repeats, I haven’t quite memorized it—but I’m close. This is the perfect skill level for the holiday season—amusing but not frustrating, with a nice fast speed of accomplishment thanks to those big 10.5 needles. If you’ve got about a week to whip up a gift for someone, this would be an excellent choice. I don’t think a silky yarn would do it justice—you need a bit of loft for this—but any wool blend could serve nicely.
Those are fiber options, but what about color? I find myself wondering what it would look like in a non-solid yarn. Would you lose the lovely diagonal lines with a heathered fiber? Would the long color variations in hand-painted yarn muddle things up? It’s enough to get a knitter’s eye wandering to her stash upstairs to experiment….