Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Hat x 3

My brother wanted a boring hat. I handed him the trusty Hats On! book and said I'd make him a striped hat, but only if he couldn't find anything he liked better in the book. He settled on the Lusekofte Cap and requested I leave off the lice on the crown. Good call, I'm not a fan of the lice pattern either. Off we went to the yarn shop and he selected two skeins of Cascade 220 in blue and grey.

click here for bigger photo

I ended up making two hats, mainly because there was enough yarn, but also because I wasn't paying close attention to the charts and I left the bottom border off the first hat (middle). Turns out my brother prefers the hat with the mistake, when I showed him the hats he pointed to the OXO on the first hat and said "I like how it starts with this." Oh. I should've shown it to him before making the second hat. The second hat on the right has a 1x1 tubular cast on, the much faster twisted german cast-on was used for the first hat. I like the grey crown and my brother is right, it does look better without the border below the OXO. Sometimes mistakes turn out to be happy accidents.

Pattern: Lusekofte Cap from Hats On! by Charlene Schurch

Yarn: Cascade 220 in blue (#9327) and grey (#8401)

Pattern Modifications: left off the lice pattern on the crowns, altered the charted pattern for the 1st hat, used a different decrease for the crowns.

I promised Dee the hat on the left 2.5 years ago. She selected and bought the yarn so I can't take the blame for knitting yet another blue and white hat. I do accept blame for taking so long to make it -- sorry Dee! This is a new variation on my variation of the Triple Patterned Watchcap.

Pattern: Triple Patterned Watchcap from Hats On! by Charlene Schurch

Yarn: Brown Sheep Nature Spun Worsted (100% wool) in blue (#?) and white (#?)

Pattern Modifications: I knit this at 6 sts/in instead of 5.5 and simply followed the pattern for the XL size (so it's 20" instead of 22") to fit Dee's 21.75" head.** The cast-on through the diamond pattern are from the book, but I don't turn the cuff over, so the book's cuff patt becomes the body patt. I added the 9 rounds of patterns before the crown, the zig-zag was found in Sheila McGregor's Traditional Fair Isle Knitting.

**Negative ease for hats is good. To determine hat size I subtract about 1.5"-2" from the head for colorwork hats, more if the hat is something stretchy like ribbing. If you knit a 22" hat for someone with a 22" head then it'll feel too loose.

For the last few days I've been sloooowly charting a mitten, based on a photo in a German knitting book from 1982. I bought the book at St. Vincent's because I assumed the chart for the mittens would be IN the book. I saw those mittens and thought, "I'm going to buy this book just to make THESE MITTENS. They are the best mittens ever!" Now, I don't know German (beyond "I am very sick" and "I am very tired"), but with the help (?) of Babelfish I've kinda-sorta figured out that the chart is in a different book. Which I don't have. Argh. It doesn't help that a model is wearing the mittens so some parts of the pattern are hidden and other parts are curved on her hands, which makes it hard to tell where the stitches line up, the stitch definition is blurred in parts, and so on. It's been a BIG hassle but I think the end result will be worth it. I have to decide on the yarn and then swatch a bit before I can start.

Li asked: "I went online looking for the book with the doggie slippers and the picture on the book doesn't look felted. Is it a felted pattern or did you do that on your own? If so, did you felt them with the ears attached, cuffs done (presumably non felting yarn), nose...."

Did you see the booties on the book cover? The book (Knit Baby Heads & Toes! by Gwen Steege) I borrowed from the library has a baby wearing a hat on the cover. Inside the book there are two photos of the booties made with two different yarns. One looks completely felted and the other looks barely felted. I like the look of felted things with no stitch definition. I guess it's really a matter of personal preference and the size you want them to be, but the instructions are written for felting.

The ears and tongue are knit separate and then sewn on pre-felting. The ribbed cuff is picked up and knit post-felting. (The pattern says to use cotton as a temporary placeholder for those cuff stitches, but I used black acrylic and it fused into the brown Lopi body during the felting process. Couldn't pull the yarn out. So I put the one row of acrylic sts on needles, and used black wool to knit the rest of the cuff.)

I cut the eyes and nose from black felt and glued them down with a hot glue gun. Now that I think about it, you could make some black wool bobbles for the eyes & nose and sew those on before felting, the same way you sew on the tongue, that should look good too.


grumperina said...

All three hats are wonderful! I love all the designs in Hats On!, though I have yet to make one. Your FOs inspire me to get movin'!

Kris said...

The hats are georgous!

Maus said...

Your hats are absolutely gorgeous! I love the "hatson" book, it is my favorite hat book and I have used it over and over again. Rarely comes along a book that is SO usefull. thanks for sharing :)

Bliss said...

Beautiful work, and what a great blog! I found you while Googling for pictures of Ullared hats, as I'm working my way through Hats On!