Hi ecb - I'm not sure exactly how many stitches you should CO, but I found the beauty of this pattern is that you can knit it to the right size as you go along - basically, the two things that should fit correctly are the neckline and the arms, since the capelet doesn't really fit around the chest as such.
I'll try and explain how I figured out how many to cast on from the pattern instructions - I hope it makes some sense!
The number of stitches you CO determines the size of the neckline only. According to the gauge on the pattern, the 49st CO is for a 16" neckline that sits around your collar bone. It's worth measuring around your collar bone and imagining how you'd like the neckline to fit (the number of stitches you cast on for the neckline is independent of the final size the capelet will be, since you continue the raglan increases until you reach the desired size).
If you'd like to make the neckline slightly bigger, then you need to CO a (multiple of 6 stitches) + 1.
For example, with the gauge given,
For approx 16" neckline - CO 49 sts (i.e. (6 x 8 stitches) + 1)
For approx 18" neckline - CO 55 sts (i.e. (6 x 9 stitches) + 1)
For approx 20" neckline - CO 61 sts (i.e. (6 x 10 stitches) + 1)
and so on....
The "(multiple of 6 stitches) +1" sounds a bit mathsy but it makes sense when you get to the raglan increases.
Using the patternas it is (49 st CO):
Row 1, RS: k2, p6, yo, pm, p1, yo, p7, yo, pm, p1, yo, p15, yo, pm, p1, yo, p7, yo, pm, p1, yo, p6, k2
Row 2 and all WS rows: knit all stitches
Row 3 and all RS rows: k2, p to next marker, yo, sl marker, p1, yo repeat from * 3 more times, p until last 2 st, k2
You then just adapt Row 1 to accomodate the extra stitches you've cast on. For example:
55 st CO:
Row 1, RS: k2, p7, yo, pm, p1, yo, p8, yo, pm, p1, yo, p17, yo, pm, p1, yo, p8, yo, pm, p1, yo, p7, k2
61 st CO:
Row 1, RS: k2, p8, yo, pm, p1, yo, p9, yo, pm, p1, yo, p19, yo, pm, p1, yo, p9, yo, pm, p1, yo, p8, k2
and so on. (I hope that adds up ok! :??)
Then it's straight forward from there as you just continue with Row 2 and Row 3 onwards according to the pattern until the sleeves are the correct size.
Little tip!: If you knit on a long enough circular needle then you should be able to tell when you've gotten to the correct sleeve size (unlike me who knit this on straights and had some very bunched up knitting! :doh:)
Does that make any sense?
Good luck & have fun! :XX: I had such fun making this, it's a really clever little pattern & looks so lovely when it's done.