What goes around

If scarves have a downside, it's their trailing ends. Short scarves unhook and need rearranging; longer scarves want to drag behind, drop suddenly into a mug of cocoa, get caught in the ordinary machinery of your day. Think Isadora Duncan.

But sew the ends of a knit scarf and you have the problem solved &

and the scarf pretty much perfected. It's one of those ideas that seems so obvious you'd think someone surely discovered it a long time ago. Like about the time they invented scarves.

At Goat Boutique in Costa Mesa, Calif., co-owner Matthew Thomas started stocking Ever's connected scarves almost three months ago. The scarves, made by Orange County native Jason Bleick's 4-year-old company, quickly sold out. With customers clamoring for more &

and the holiday season on the way &

Thomas' grandmother offered to make them herself.

"She started counting the stitches and said, 'Oh, I can make this,' " Thomas says of his grandmother Verba Gore, a self-taught knitter.

Gore, whose age her grandson declined to give ("She'd kill me if I told you"), uses wool or cashmere, in solid colors or multicolored yarn that knits up in beautiful variegated stripes. Thomas sells the pieces for $110 to $150.

A quick look at one of the gorgeous scarves and you can see why Gore decided to make them herself: They are just a simple rib stitch, 5 1/2 feet of it, with no intarsia or cables. You barely need a pattern. In one color, on size 10 needles, you can knit the scarf in a long afternoon of movie watching. Then, when you're finished knitting, simply fold the long scarf in half, twist it once (this lets it hang nicely) and sew up the ends.

The scarf is enormously fun to wear too. Wind it around twice and you have a terrific loose fit in the first loop, with the second forming a pretty cowl. Hook it three times for a thick fit at your neck; or let it fall down your back in a single, irreverent loop. Or get a little creative: Pull one loop over your head or wind it under your shoulder.

Go all-black in a luscious cashmere, or work a sportier scarf by pairing a pearl gray Peruvian wool with a skein of scarlet. As long as you get the gauge right, you can knit this scarf out of just about any yarn.

And with no ends to worry about, it's a scarf you can wear safely in your convertible.

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