Monthly Archives: November 2008

Knitting hats for Christmas

Hat A

Hat A

Over the last few months I’ve been busy knitting hats for Christmas.  I’m finding it almost addictive.  I bought a couple of balls of Garnstudio ‘Eskimo’ a few months ago and think it is the best yarn for winter hats.  It is supersoft with no tickle and reasonably priced.  I think it would not be durable enough for a larger piece like a jumper but for hats it’s just right.  If you have any super bulky yarn that knits up to the same gauge you can easily substitute it also.

I started playing around with hats a little bit – all my hats for the last few months have been top down.  It’s a a fun way of doing it as you can decide on the size as you go and can try it on before you put the edging on to make sure it is the right size for you.  I used slip stitch colour patterns rather than fair isle knitting as they are so quick to do (and they can be used by even a beginner knitter without too much difficulty).

Hat B

Hat B

I have put the hats together as a pattern, although it is really more of a booklet and called it Pick ‘n Mix.

The way it is laid out is as follows:

1. Choose your increase method

This hat is knitted form the top down so you must first decide on the type of increase that you want to use. Here are a few different examples that you can try to see which you like best – or if you have your own favorite by all means use it!

2. Choose your slip stitch pattern

Slip stitch patterns can give you the apparent complexity of intricate color work but with almost the same speed as knitting in plain stockinette st. Pick your pattern from the four below (Note: All slipped sts are slipped purl-wise and when knitting in the round the yarn is held at the back of work when stitches are slipped.)

3. Choose your hat edging

Details of the different edging methods are given in the pattern.

A: Ruffle edging

Nice and feminine.

B: Straight edging

Works well for male and female.

C: No edging

Creates a ‘pillbox’ hat effect.

Hat C

Hat C

FINISHED MEASUREMENTS

Slip st pattern A : 18 [20, 22, 24] inches diameter

Slip st pattern B : 19.5 [21.75, 24, 26] inches diameter

Slip st pattern C and D: 18.6 [20, 22.6, 24] inches diameter

Yarn and Needles:

[MC] Garnstudio Eskimo [100% wool; 54 yd/50 m per 50g skein]; color: Light blue (shade 12); 1 [2, 2, 3] skeins

[CC] Garnstudio Eskimo [100% wool; 54 yd/50 m per 50g skein]; color: Light blue (shade 12); 1 [1, 1, 2] skeins

1 set US 13/9 mm double-pointed needles
16-inch/41 cm US 13/9 mm circular needle

Hats A, B and C
Hat Tops

Hat Tops

Some finished knitting

This must be a record for me – usually it takes me weeks to get a single post up and look at me now, 3 posts in 24 hours!

I have a few photos of the finished knitting I did over the last week.

First up are my cozy Monkey socks.

I am so happy with the green cabled jumper.  I thought it was going to be too heavy and unwearable with the Kilcarra but I have worn it all day and I just love it.  I made a few modifications:

1. I added a small bit of waist shaping, I just didn’t see any reason not too!

2. I just continued the ribbing up for a collar rather than a hood.  I just felt I would get more wear out of it that way.

3. On the sleeves when I started I missed that the ribbing should be continued before you began the cable so I started the cable right at the wrist.  When I had gone one repeat in I realised what I had done but I decided to keep it as a modification rather than change it – I liked the way it looked.

Anyone looking closely will see that my crochet buttonholes leave a lot to be desired.  I may rip them out and try again when I get a few moments.  Crochet is not my strong point!!

Knitting in the Sun

Even though it is still a little early (as it isn’t quite released yet!) I am very excited to say that the first book with my patterns in it is up on Amazon!!  Knitting in the Sun is a book with knitting for warmer weather.   I will have three patterns in the book – a fitted shell/tank top with lace panels, a matching bolero with lace panels on the sleeves and also a beach bag that doubles as a blanket (for those times you have forgotten to bring a blanket to use on the beach!).  I am so in love with the top and I just loved knitting in bamboo, so silky and smooth.

Kirsti Porter who put the book together was such a pleasure to work with, and I see she has a photo of the cover up on her website that I’m going to borrow!

Lots of lovely knitting to be done!

For anyone out there who hasn’t seen the latest issue of Twist Collective go take a look now.  There are so many patterns that I just adore I’m not really sure how I’ll ever find enough knitting time!  I especially love Gytha, the colour combinations are just so beautiful.  Heroine is such an unusual but very functional jacket.  It looks like it could withstand a cold winter!

I have actually managed to finish some knitting over the last few weeks.  I got the second of my Monkey socks finished (I have serious sock syndrome!!) and my green cabled jumper is finished.  I didn’t add in the hood as it just seemed like too much weight with Kilcarra (it weighs several pounds as it is!)…  I hope to take a few photos over the weekend and will get them up to show off the finished pieces.

For anyone looking for some top down hat patterns I will be publishing a pattern with several variations in the next few weeks.  Watch this spot..