Category Archives: hats

Whoooooo?????

Over the past couple of years, my (almost) 11-year-old daughter has added some new animals to her list of favorites. Along with dogs, polar bears and dolphins, she now has a favorite bird – owls. Apparently owls are getting popular in general, because we see them everywhere lately – Hannah’s got an owl backpack, blanket, notebooks, shirt, etc.

Owls are big in knitwear design too, it seems. I found this cute pattern last month, so I knitted Hannah an owl hat.

She picked out the yarn -it’s knit in Cascade Pacific, in the Baby Lime colorway. I found the buttons at JoAnn Fabrics – there are four different colors of blue, teal and green and they look really cute as owl eyes on the hat.

Along with the hat, I think I’m going to incorporate the same owl design into a pair of mittens (or maybe fingerless mitts) for her at some point this winter.

My other owl-related knitting project this fall is for Hannah’s upcoming birthday party (owl themed, of course). I saw the Owl Puff pattern on Ravelry a little while ago and had been wanting to make one. In thinking about the birthday party, I thought these would make really cute party favors – and at this age, we don’t need to be sending home goodie bags full of candy and junk.

So I made an Owl Puff. And another.

It’s kind of addictive actually. They almost just seem to multiply on their own.

Ok, so not quite. But I can make a couple of them in an evening, so they’re a very quick knit – and a great way to use up scrap yarn. The only cost I’ve had is for the safety eyes, but I’ve spent less on those than I would have for little toys and candy for goodie bags.

And these are much, much cuter. :)

Dreaming in Color

Although I’ve been knitting for several years now, it’s only really been in the last year or so that I’ve really become aware of the gorgeous array of natural fiber yarns that are out there. One of my favorite companies nowadays is Dream in Color – a yarn line carried by my LYS.

I first became aware of Dream in Color yarns when their Dream Club was highlighted in the weekly LYS newsletter. Basically every month from September 2012 through February 2013, Dream in Color dyed up a special colorway and paired it with a pattern designed specifically for that month’s club. Instead of working like most traditional yarn clubs, where individuals sign up and receive yarn shipments directly at home, this one is a bit different in that they send the club packages to the local yarn stores and you purchase them there.

I missed September’s yarn and pattern, but snagged October’s last fall. It was a gorgeous yarn with a mix of browns, golds and a hint of green – totally reminiscent of autumn leaf colors. The pattern was called Autumn Fern Mobius – a beautiful infinity style cowl/scarf that I was very excited to knit.

I did cast the project on in October, but due to holiday knitting – I didn’t finish until January. I love how it turned out though, and I’ve been wearing it often. I’m so not used to wearing actual wool – it’s almost been too warm to wear on many days unless the temperatures have been really frigid. :)

November’s yarn was a soft pink that I really liked, but the pattern was for a pair of opera (up to the elbow) length mitts (called Carmen) that I wasn’t sure I would like or not. I ended up actually using that skein of yarn (plus an extra I bought later) for my Enfolded Shawlette that I knit in January.

I went back and forth about the pattern that came with the gorgeous skein of December Dream Club yarn. Although I really liked the idea of the Seychelles shawl/cape, I just didn’t know if it’s something that I would ever wear. And the yarn was just too pretty to make something I wasn’t totally sure about. So I went searching on Ravelry for an alternative and came up with the Context pattern. It was a very quick and fun knit and it blocked out beautifully after I finished it. It fits perfectly as a scarf or shawlette.

January’s Dream Club was a win-win for me with both the yarn and the Ichigo Tam pattern. This is probably one of the most absolute gorgeous yarn colorways I’ve ever seen, and I’d been wanting a slouchy hat of some sort for myself since I didn’t already have a hat and I’m not a fan of the more tightly-fit ones. I had to wait a little while before casting the hat on though, since I didn’t own either of the needle sizes and lengths required. I cast-on the larger size of the pattern, for a 22” head circumference. But when I got about halfway through the pattern repeats – enough so I could try the brim on, I decided that while it did technically fit, my thick, bulky hair would probably pop the hat right off the top of my head.

So I frogged the whole thing and started over, adding an extra 16 stitches. Oh that was painful! But the end result was well worth it since the hat fits perfectly and I absolutely love it. And I even have almost half the skein left, so I think I’ll find a pattern and knit myself a pair of mitts to match. :)

I haven’t purchased February’s Dream Club yarn/pattern (yet), mainly because my budget is tighter than it had been and I’m not totally in love with the yarn colorway, which is in shades of red. The pattern isn’t something I’d really wear either. I may pick it up later if my LYS has any left over – they have had leftovers of almost every other month so we’ll see. But overall it’s been so much fun to see what Dream in Color comes out with every month and I can’t wait to see if they do another round of the Dream Club this fall!

Four years!

So I figured out completely by accident last night that it’s been almost exactly four years since I taught myself to knit. I was looking through a bunch of photos that I took four years ago to find something for this week’s Wordless Wednesday, and happened to see pictures of my first two knitting projects from way back then.

I was a pretty avid crocheter in earlier years but had started having a lot of pain in my hand when I crocheted, so thought knitting would be a good challenge to tackle. I was right! :)

KnitScarf_001

It was very simple – just garter stitch. I do remember being proud of myself for figuring out how to change colors though. I can’t remember for absolute certain, but I think I’d originally used those colors because I a) had the yarn already in-hand from a baby afghan I’d been planning to crochet and b) thought my husband would be able to use the scarf. I was wrong – the scarf was too short for him (he’s not the scarf type anyway), and the colors weren’t ‘girl’ enough to tempt any of my daughters to wear it. I think this scarf is still buried at the bottom of a drawer somewhere.

KnitHat_001

I still had yarn left after the scarf, so I made a hat to match. At the time I wasn’t ready to tackle knitting in the round, so this hat was knitted flat and then I seamed it up the side. Not very well, as you can see:

KnitHat_002

I did have someone willing at least to model the hat for me, but I don’t think it’s been worn since. It wasn’t a horrible job for a first attempt, but I cringe when I look at these pictures of it now – I’ve learned so much since then!

HannahInKnitHat

Do you remember what your first knitting project was? Do you still have it? :)

Halloween Pumpkin Hat Pattern

So yes, I know it’s been a few months since Halloween, but I’ve been meaning to post this so figured I’d go ahead anyway. I want to remember how I made this hat, and since I couldn’t find a pattern that I liked when I was looking, I want to put this out there in case it can help anyone else next Halloween or for future ones. If you have any questions about this pattern, you can e-mail me at debmomof3(at)comcast(dot)net.

Halloween2011 004

Halloween Pumpkin Hat

Size: generally fits toddler or preschooler. Hat size can be increased or decreased by adding or subtracting stitches in sets of 8 and adjusting pattern accordingly.

Gauge: approximately 6 sts per inch using worsted weight yarn on US size 8 needles.

Materials:

  • Orange-colored worsted weight yarn (should take one skein or less)
  • Green-colored worsted weight yarn (only a few ounces required)
  • US size 8 circular needle or size required to meet gauge
  • US size 8 double-pointed needles

Cast on 80 stitches on circular needle. Place marker to designate end of round. Knit 4×4 ribbing for 8 rounds.

Round 9: *Purl one stitch, knit next 6 stitches, purl one stitch. Repeat from * 9 more times to end of round.

Repeat Round 9 until hat measures approximately 6-8 inches. Hat should fit around head from ears to crown.

BeccasPumpkinHat 001

Begin decrease rounds. Switch to double-pointed needles when no longer comfortable to knit on circular.

  • First decrease round: *Purl one stitch, knit next 2 stitches together, knit next 4 stitches, purl one stitch. Repeat from * 9 more times to end of round.
  • Next round: *Purl one stitch, knit next 5 stitches, purl one stitch. Repeat from * 9 more times to end of round.
  • Second decrease round: *Purl one stitch, knit next 2 stitches together, knit next 3 stitches, purl one stitch. Repeat from * 9 more times to end of round.
  • Next round: *Purl one stitch, knit next 4 stitches, purl one stitch. Repeat from * 9 more times to end of round.
  • Third decrease round: *Purl one stitch, knit next 2 stitches together, knit next 2 stitches, purl one stitch. Repeat from * 9 more times to end of round.
  • Next round: *Purl one stitch, knit next 3 stitches, purl one stitch. Repeat from * 9 more times to end of round.
  • Fourth decrease round: *Purl one stitch, knit next 2 stitches together, knit next stitch, purl one stitch. Repeat from * 9 more times to end of round.
  • Next round: *Purl one stitch, knit next 2 stitches, purl one stitch. Repeat from * 9 more times to end of round.
  • BeccasPumpkinHat 002Fifth decrease round: *Purl one stitch, knit next 2 stitches together, knit next stitch, purl one stitch. Repeat from * 9 more times to end of round.
  • Switch to green yarn. *Purl one stitch, knit one stitch, purl one stitch. Repeat from * 9 more times to end of round. Repeat round 2x.
  • Sixth decrease round: *Knit next 2 stitches together, purl next stitch. Repeat from * 9 more times to end of round.
  • Seventh decrease round: *Knit next 2 stitches together. Repeat from * 9 more times to end of round.

You should have 10 stitches left to form the stem. Knit as many rounds of those last 10 stitches as necessary to form stem length you want. When stem is at correct length, knit 2 stitches together 5x, then cut yarn and draw through last 5 stitches. Weave in yarn ends.

Note: If you wish the ‘green’ portion of the hat to be larger, simply switch to the green yarn earlier in the pattern, such as when beginning decrease rounds.

Happy Knitting!

Catching up

It’s always hard to come back after a blogging break – especially when it stretches much longer than ever anticipated… And that contributes to the problem – the longer the break, the harder it is to actually sit down at the keyboard and begin to put words down again.

I’ve taken a break from all 3 of my sites this fall – a much-needed one. And I’m working on combining my other 2 sites together – something that will hopefully be done in the next couple of weeks. But I don’t want to wait any longer to start updating here again – especially since I do have a lot of knitting to catch you all up on. :)

GryffindorScarfInProgress-Sept2011

I’d left off back in August when I’d started working on a scarf for my middle daughter’s Halloween costume – she wanted to be Hermione from the Harry Potter books/movies. I finished the scarf in October, giving me plenty of time to make one further Halloween-related project as well – more about that in a bit.

Halloween2011 002

The scarf turned out perfectly, and I found a Gryffindor patch online that I bought and attached using fabric glue. I’d worried that after having spent all of the time and effort to make the scarf, it would turn out to be too hot on Halloween to wear it, but we had pretty decent weather. Not too hot, but not terribly freezing either. The girls were all warm enough wearing heavy clothes under (or with) their costumes with no need for coats.

Two of them did wear hats though – my oldest had put together her own costume to be Hello Kitty (since I didn’t think the store-bought costume for Hello Kitty was anywhere near appropriate for a 10-year-old), and part of that involved a Hello Kitty-faced hat that we bought. If I hadn’t already been working on the scarf, I may have tried to make one, but the one she used was really cute and she’s wearing it as her winter hat this year too, so it definitely wasn’t money wasted.

BeccasPumpkinHat 002

My youngest wanted to be a pumpkin for Halloween – I found a very cute costume at a secondhand store, and picked up cheap orange sweats for her to wear under it. About a week before Halloween, I decided that she needed a pumpkin hat to go with her costume, so I quickly knitted one. I ended up making my own pattern since I couldn’t find one that I liked – I’ve made enough hats in general now to have a pretty good idea how to get what I was looking for and it turned out perfectly. I’ll post the pattern next time in case anyone ever wants to duplicate the hat ( and so I don’t forget myself, lol).

BeccasPumpkinHat 001

Halloween2011 004

I loved being able to help with the girls’ costumes this year, since sewing is definitely not something I’m good enough at to even attempt trying to make an entire costume at home. I need to remember to pin them down on costume choices a couple of months ahead of time again next year so I’ll have plenty of knitting time for however I can contribute to what they decide to dress up as then!

Get Sheep(ish) with Vickie Howell’s new Stitch. Rock. Love yarn!

Sheep(ish) Yarn from Vickie Howell and CaronI’ve been working with yarn in one way or another since I was a kid – back from when my mom first taught me to finger crochet and use a french knitting spool, to my college years when I learned to crochet and made afghans for everybody I knew – right up to these past years of motherhood, when knitting has become a true passion. I love yarn – working with it, looking at it, running my fingers over it, drooling over colors or fibers that I wish I could bring home but simply don’t have the space (or money) for… Not all yarn needs to be expensive or difficult to find though – and Caron’s newest yarn offering from spokesperson Vickie Howell (the first in her new line of Stitch. Rock. Love yarns) is an affordably-priced, versatile option called Sheep(ish).

Sheep(ish) Yarn from Vickie Howell and Caron

I’ve been working with the new Sheep(ish) yarn for the past couple of weeks – I was sent three skeins in the Olive(ish) colorway to try out, which made me very happy since green is my favorite color and this is a beautiful shade of it. Sheep(ish) is a single-ply, wool/acrylic blend (30% wool to 70% acrylic) of a worsted roving yarn (medium weight – 4). It comes in a 3 oz. (85 g) skein with 167 yards (153 m). The suggested needle size is #8 US and hook size is H-8 US. Sheep(ish) is machine washable (cold on gentle cycle), but items should be laid flat to dry. There are 21 different colors all told, so that you’re sure to find the perfect one for your next project.

Sheep(ish) Yarn from Vickie Howell and Caron

I initially decided to knit a hat with my Sheep(ish) yarn – I’d found a pattern a little while ago on Ravelry that I’d wanted to try (the Amanda Hat) and since it calls for a single-ply worsted weight yarn, I thought it would be a good fit. The pattern calls for a size US 9 needle, so because my 16” circular is a US 8, I made sure to knit a gauge swatch before beginning the hat. It was also a good way to get a sense of how the Sheep(ish) yarn would be to work with before starting an actual project. I’m glad I took the time to make the swatch – the hat pattern calls for a gauge of 4 sts per inch and I was getting 5 sts per inch instead. So I made a few adjustments in the pattern to account for the gauge difference.

Amanda Hat in Sheep(ish) yarn

Amanda Hat in Sheep(ish) yarn

Amanda Hat in Sheep(ish) yarn

I really like how the hat turned out and the Sheep(ish) yarn was wonderful to work with. I don’t usually like using totally synthetic fibers because I don’t like how they feel against my fingers. I generally prefer more natural fibers when possible, but also prefer  yarn that’s machine washable, so the mix of acrylic and wool here is really nice. The yarn slides well through my fingers and onto the needles – and being a single ply, there’s no worry about the yarn splitting as I knit. The Sheep(ish) yarn has a nice sheen to it that I like in the finished product, and it’s just slightly fuzzy. So far I’ve not run into any knots – the skeins are center-pull and it’s been pretty easy to find the ends inside them when I begin one too. This hat fits me well – and my older daughters were more than happy to model it for me. :)

Amanda Hat in Sheep(ish) yarnAmanda Hat in Sheep(ish) yarn

After finishing the Amanda Hat, I still had almost 2 full skeins of Sheep(ish) left, so I decided to try another project. I’d seen the new free patterns that Vickie Howell has designed specifically for this new yarn, and love her Urban Revival slouchie beanie. I was able to get a copy of the pattern a few days before it was released and began working on the hat last weekend. It’s a nice quick project in general – this is the first time in several years that I’ve crocheted something instead of knit, so I’ve almost had to re-teach myself how to crochet as well.

Here are a few photos of the hat in-progress – first the band, and then the main hat…

Sheep(ish) Yarn Urban Revival slouchie beanie

Urban Revival Slouchie Beanie 003

I found a couple of silver buttons that I really like at Walmart, so added those to the band, after I stitched it onto the hat:

Urban Revival Slouchie Beanie 007

And here’s the finished product – both off and on. I love it – and look forward to wearing it once the weather gets cold out again next fall!

Urban Revival Slouchie Beanie 006 Urban Revival Slouchie Beanie 010

I am so thrilled to have had this chance to work with the new Sheep(ish) yarn from Vickie Howell’s new Stitch. Rock. Love line from Caron, and can’t wait to try more projects in it (and in more colors) as well. Sheep(ish) is now officially available online at Buy.Caron.com and at JoAnn super stores nationwide To find a location near you that carries it, check out the Sheep(ish) finder app on Vickie’s website. Sheep(ish) is also available through the Herrschners catalogue and will soon be available in select, independent stores. And if you’re in or near Columbus, OH on Sunday, June 12th – Vickie will be at the Notions Marketing booth at TNNA for a Sheep(ish) Make & Take (make your own chopstick cozy!) and an AwareKnits book signing.

You can follow along on the rest of the stops on the Sheep(ish) blog tour here:

Happy knitting (and crocheting)! :)

I received 3 skeins of Sheep(ish) yarn as part of this blog tour, but all opinions here are 100% my own.

Where are they now? 2KCBWDAY4

Today’s topic (2KCBWDAY4) for Knitting and Crochet Blog Week is to talk about a past project and what’s happened to it since it was finished and proudly displayed here on my blog.

In my case, I could maybe call this post, “A Tale of Two Hats” – because that’s how many hats I’ve knitted for my oldest daughter for this past winter. And that’s also exactly how many hats she’s lost.

I should mention that my daughter is well-known in our family for misplacing or losing things in general, especially articles of clothing. At one point last year, she’d lost every single one of her coats at school, leaving me to send her one day in a sweatshirt (on a 40-degree day) because she had nothing else to wear. Thankfully all of her coats ended up making their way home eventually (we keep all of her things well-labeled).

But not so much luck with the hats.

Last fall I knitted a hat out of a purple variegated yarn that I picked up on clearance at the LYS. I love the feel of this yarn and made a really nice, simple roll-brim hat for my daughter with it – just in time for the start of the cold weather.

AbbysHat2010_005

In December, we headed to a neighboring city for a day, while my husband had a job interview. I took the girls to McDonalds to hang out and play while we waited for him, and at some point while we were there, somebody else walked off with this purple hat. Which wasn’t my daughter’s fault, of course – but she had left the hat (and her coat) lying on the floor, and hadn’t kept track of them while we were there either. In any case, the hat was gone – and there was no getting it back.

So, I did what any mom who knits would do – I made her a new hat. This time out of another color of the same yarn as the original hat – shades of pink instead of purple. It was the same pattern, but I changed it up a little  bit afterward by adding a pompom on top and a crocheted flower to make it a little prettier.

HatUpdates 004

This hat currently resides in the lost-and-found bin at the school where my middle daughter has cheerleading practice – at least I hope it made its way into their lost-and-found. My oldest accidentally left the hat there several weeks ago and I haven’t had the chance to check since. Thankfully it’s been a bit warmer lately so she hasn’t absolutely needed to wear a hat.

I will say one thing – the next time I knit my daughter a hat, I’m going to try a different pattern and use the experience to maybe learn something new. I don’t mind making hats, but want to do something other than a straight stockinette hat with a roll brim.

Hmm, maybe the fact that she keeps losing her hats is an opportunity rather than a problem! :)

Come back tomorrow – for a surprise!

Embellishments

This time of year I really struggle with being stuck in the house so much and feeling cooped up. It’s gray and cold and snowy outside, and especially after all of the holiday decorations are down and put away, every place just looks dull.

I posted earlier about how I decided to try making flowers to spice up my daughters’ winter hats a little bit – I think it was as much a way to brighten up this wintertime existence as anything else.

Tonight I finished my oldest daughter’s new hat – the same basic roll-brim pattern that I’ve used before. But I did two things to it afterward that I think really make a huge difference and turn it from just a ‘hat’ into a ‘really cute hat’.

Only a couple of days before my daughter lost her previous hat, I’d taken a few minutes and fashioned a simple pom-pom to adorn the top of it. I never even took a picture of the hat afterward, and it was gone so soon that I never had the chance to. But it added a lot of personality to the hat and my daughter loved the addition. So tonight as soon as her new hat was finished she asked for a pom-pom for this hat – as well as a flower, like the ones I’d made for her sisters’ hats.

Abbys2ndHat 002

Not 30 seconds after I’d finished the pom-pom, my youngest daughter decided that she just had to have one for her hat too (never mind that I’d asked her weeks ago, only to get firmly turned d0wn). So I spent a few minutes making her one too. It really doesn’t take very long to make a pom-pom or to crochet a simple flower – but it makes such a difference when adding these things to a project!

PomPomOnBeccasHat 002

Yes, it is a gigantic pom-pom – I had ‘just enough’ but also slightly ‘too much’ yarn left over so figured I’d just use it all up. If nothing else, I’ll be able to pick her out in a crowd, lol…  I may take the scissors to it and give it a bit more of a trim after I see how it looks on her tomorrow.

For the previous hat flowers, I’d used buttons for the center – just ones that I dug up in my jewelry box. My own mom always had a ‘button box’ – she sewed a lot, and her button collection had some of the most unique and fun buttons I’d ever seen. I only have about a half-dozen, collected from who knows where – but I’d managed to find two that worked perfectly with the flowers. Not so much this time though – so I found myself off to the only store open late into the evening that might hopefully sell some kind of interesting buttons. I had no luck in their small sewing section – but did find a package of sparkly flower-shaped ones with the scrapbooking supplies. And I think this button was the perfect addition to the flower and the hat!

Abbys2ndHat 003

I have no pictures (yet) of the girls in their new (and newly embellished) hats, because they were both in bed by the time the hats were done. But I’m sure I’ll get more than few in the morning and will share them after that.

Now I just have to figure out what to work on next – I hate not having a project to pick up at any given time. I know some knitters have many (many) projects all on the needles at once, but I seem to work best one at a time, at least right now. I’m thinking I’d like to get at least one more pair of socks done this winter – but I’m ready to try a different method this time. Whether that entails magic loop, 2 circulars or what, I have no idea yet. I’ll have to see what seems interesting and what needles I have on hand – I’m really intrigued by the idea of interchangeable needle sets, but that’s going to have to wait a while. Or even though I’m out of hats to embellish – I can still make a few more crocheted flowers to brighten up my mood and my day.  :)

Learning more as I go along

It’s funny how much more I know now about knitting than I did when I started out a couple of years ago. And how much more I know that I yet need to learn… Sometimes lessons are discovered well after they happened – and past mistakes come back to, well bite me.

For example, a couple of the first projects that I made which were something other than scarves and squares – were hats for the girls, as I posted about previously. I’ve been rather proud of the hats that I’d made for Hannah and Becca last year – they’re cute, they fit and I did a pretty good job on them. Or at least I thought I had.

Take a good look at Hannah’s hat…

HannahsHat_003

I thought at the time that the pattern was interesting, because the main portion of the hat wasn’t straight stockinette stitch. I hadn’t looked at this particular pattern in a while though, because I’d misplaced the book it’s in. After finishing my socks though, I decided it was time to knit Becca a new hat since hers is getting a little small – and because she hadn’t picked out the yarn for the initial one herself, since it originally was meant to be for Hannah (just turned out smaller than anticipated). I thought about what pattern I wanted to use and decided that I really liked this one because it wasn’t just rounds of straight knitting like the hat I recently made for Abby was.

Looking at the pattern though, I was confused when I saw that it does indeed call for rounds of knitting in stockinette stitch for the main portion instead of the alternating rounds of knitting and purling that the completed hats have.

Then I realized…

Apparently on these first hats (my first attempts at knitting in the round) I hadn’t yet learned that since in the round you’re always knitting on the same side of the project -  you create stockinette stitch by knitting every round, instead of a flat project where stockinette is created by alternate rows of knitting and purling back and forth. So when this pattern called for “continuing in stockinette stitch”, I apparently did what I was used to, and knitted/purled in alternating rounds.

It really doesn’t take anything away from these early hats – they’re still cute, they still fit, and I’ve gotten several compliments on them. But, now that I know they were actually made incorrectly, it just bugs me.

So I knitted Becca a new hat this week – in a yarn that she picked out (from several options I gave her), and in this pattern. The hat fits, it’s cute – and I can be proud that I finally completed the pattern correctly.  :)

BeccasNewHat_004BeccasNewHat_003BeccasNewHat_002

Next up – more confusion reigns… This time back to socks. After looking through book after book, searching different methods online and asking opinions at the LYS – I’m going back to basics and am going to take the method that I already know (dpns) and try to get better at that before I throw different techniques into the mix. So I’m knitting another pair of socks – this time in a non-stretchy sock yarn (Bernat Sox to be specific). And I’m knitting them one at a time on dpns – but this time 4 dpns instead of 3, so hopefully the laddering will be less of an issue this time. The socks will go to whichever of the girls they end up fitting (my best guess from looking at the pattern is Hannah – any bets?). So we’ll see. The first one doesn’t look like much so far yet, but I just started it tonight so give it some time.  :)

KidsSocks

All about hats

Some of the very first projects that I worked on after I first started knitting were hats. After squares and scarves, anyway. They were my initial foray into knitting in the round, and last fall I proudly knit each of my girls a hat to wear during the winter.

The first hat that I made was strictly to pattern size, mainly to see if I could do it. The hat was from the book, “Big Book of Knit Hats & Scarves for Everyone”, called the ‘Quick & Easy Roll Brim Hat’. It was a one-size-fits-all pattern, intended for adults. I was going to give the hat to Hannah, my 7-year-old, if it fit – thinking that it might be a little bit big.

It didn’t fit – but it wasn’t too big. In fact, it fit my 4-year-old, Becca – perfectly. So that was the hat she wore last winter.  :)

SnowDay-Feb10_063

For my second hat attempt, I changed several variables in order to obtain the gauge that I needed for the hat to fit Hannah. I used bulky-weight yarn (as the pattern called for, and which I hadn’t done on the first hat). I also added a couple of sets of pattern stitches. And I tried to knit more loosely – or at least not quite as tightly. In any case, it all worked – the hat fit Hannah. Phew!HannahsHat_003

When it came time to make a hat for Abby, she picked out another bulky-weight yarn, but of a different material. I was a little unsure as to how well chenille would work for a hat, but I gave it a go. Using the same amount of stitches as for Hannah’s hat, I realized early on that the hat would be big, but since Abby has a large head anyway, I figured it would probably be ok.

I was wrong – about more than just the hat size. Chenille stretches – and the first hat that I made for Abby was huge. It looked like she was wearing a hat meant for a giant. Abby thought it was pretty cool anyway, but I didn’t want anyone seeing her in that hat, so I quickly knitted her up another one – back to the amount of stitches that the pattern called for. And it fit – at least at first…

AbbyInNewHat

But within days of wearing the hat, it stretched so much that it lost its shape and looked almost like a beret when Abby wore it. Nevertheless, she loved the hat so much because I’d made it for her and she wore it all winter.

SnowDay-Feb10_140

Yes, I think that by the end, only her glasses were keeping the hat from falling down over her eyes! When she lost the hat near the end of the winter, Abby was heartbroken (I, not so much though) – so I promised that I would knit her a new one for this winter.

This week, I made good on that promise. I wanted a break between socks anyway, and we’ve had a few mornings lately that were cold enough for me to consider breaking out the hats and mittens for the girls. I wanted to get Abby’s hat done – before she really needs it. So I headed to the LYS (local yarn store) and found a really nice, soft worsted-weight yarn on clearance. And a new hat pattern – since I can’t find my book that had the previous pattern in it.

I started the hat last Tuesday, and it’s a very, very simple pattern – just round after round of knitting until the decrease rows at the end to shape the top of the hat. It also has a roll brim at the bottom. This time I was smarter about size – the pattern is meant for a 20-inch head, so I measured Abby’s. Her head measures 22 inches, so I figured out the amount of stitches per inch for the correct gauge and added to the pattern accordingly.

Initially, I was slightly worried as I tried the hat on her, once I thought it was big enough to test for size…  ;)

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But when I got further along, it seemed to fit very well.  I finished the hat tonight and it fits her – perfectly.

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So for the moment, I think we’re good, hat-wise anyway. Becca’s hat just barely fits now though, so I have the feeling that in a few months I’ll be making her a larger one too. I don’t mind – it was nice to have an easy project where I didn’t have to count stitches or worry about pattern. I could just sit and work while watching tv, at Hannah’s soccer practices, or while listening to music or podcasts on my phone.

OTN: Next up is to make the second sock. I’ve already got it cast on and have done a few rows of the top ribbing. I am determined to finish this pair of socks using dpns – then I really want to learn some of the other sock-making methods that I’ve heard are much easier.