I wasn't supposed to be making a cowl right now, especially a heavy, woolen one at that. But a few weeks ago I met a friend at the wool shop and found myself inexplicably drawn to the chunky wool section, stroking and squeezing different balls, inspecting labels, holding them up to the light. Before I knew it I'd bought two balls of yellow yarn and a 10 mm hook and that was it, I was off. No plan, not pattern, just an urge to crochet something chunky. This naughty project rudely jumped right to the start of the WIP queue, pushing other, more seasonal plans aside, and demanding my full attention before the weather grew to warm to wear it.
I wasn't sure if it was going to be a scarf or a cowl. I just knew that I wanted it long and loopy, so I could wear it loose or wrapped around twice. The cowl won, and I've modeled it awkwardly for you below. I think it's really hard to visualise how knitted or crocheted garments look if you can't actually see them being worn; it's all well and good to see it arranged on a table, but it doesn't really give you an idea of scale or how it looks on a person.
Turns out two balls wasn't enough and I had to go back for a third. Before I joined the ends together it was 6 foot or 180 cm long. I crocheted them together using slip stitches which looks like this on the "right" side:
And this on the "wrong" side.
The fabric feels stiff and structured to begin with but very quickly softens. I used Rowan Big Wool, which I've used a few times in the past. It's not the cheapest brand, and you could save money by buying a wool/acrylic mix yarn, but I like it. It's incredibly warm and solid-feeling.
You will need around two and a half balls or 250 grams of very chunky yarn and a 10 mm hook. If you are shorter than me (I am 5' 11") and don't want it quite as long, two balls will suffice.
Make a foundation chain of 14 stitches (12 plus 2 chain which will be the "13th" stitch) then just crochet back and forwards in rows of 13 half trebles until you reach the desired length or run out of wool. Crochet or sew your two ends together so that you have one big loop, and darn in your ends. You shouldn't need to block this, the weight of the yarn does wonders to keep it straight as you work.
But you might want to do the sensible thing and make it in autumn.