I love owls, so when I saw this cowl confection by Betsy Farquhar, I immediately plunked down $5 and dropped it into my queue. After studying the pattern, I realized that, as written, the pattern was large enough for me to use as a tube top. Besides being too wide, it was long enough to not only cover my neck, but would extend over the top of my head, as well. I live in Georgia and our winters are too mild for face masks. Besides, I would have to add eyeholes (too much work) and it was too memorable to use in a bank robbery.
A little pattern editing was in order. I reduced the number of owls from five to four and eliminated the chevron patterns above and below the main event. I found a pretty skein of peach and green Lisa Souza sock yarn and dyed half of it black.
When I had finished knitting the owls, I decided that the tube would make a lovely hat, should I not want to actually wear a cowl. Waving my magic knitting wand (patent pending), I worked a row of K2tog, K8, YO to make some holes, through which I threaded a tasseled cord after knitting a final inch and binding off.
No, I didn't make an i-cord. Instead, I tightly twisted eight strands together, folded the result in half, and knotted the ends, which produced a twisted cord in about one-tenth the time it would have taken me to knit an i-cord, assuming I could be compelled to do so (not in this lifetime).
The end result is a howl...tighten the cord and it's a hat; loosen the cord and it's a cowl. The concept, which I am sure is not my invention, is clever, requires almost no extra work, and can be adapted to any hat or cowl to produce a hybrid howl.