Thursday, April 28, 2011

Winter, Winter, Winter

Here I am, editing the baby bootie pattern, and I looked out the window to see... more snow. Really. The last of the snow has just melted off the back yard (though it's admittedly still clinging to spots in the north-facing front yard) and here we are, back to square one.

We are not amused. If it snows again next week, I can make t-shirts which will read: "I SURVIVED THE NINE MONTH WINTER." Yes, we often get a dump of snow in May, but we don't usually have snow cover from October through April. I'm going to end the weather rant now, and simply note that I noticed some tulips and daffodils beginning to sprout by the back door. It's exciting, because this is a new house for us, and since there was already snow cover when we moved in (see above) I don't know what surprises may sprout.

So, as one might imagine, I am still knitting and designing wintery sorts of things. I noticed the local supply of hats was getting low, so I dove into the stash and came out with some Berroco "Blackstone Tweed" and Mirasol "Tika". Then I flipped through my stitch dictionaries until I found a nice wave pattern. I had to tweak it slightly to make it work how I wanted.

(Berroco Ultra Alpaca.)

I think the greatest thing about this stitch pattern is that the beginning and end of round are virtually invisible. That means there is no jog or fancy slip stitches needed to avoid a jog.

This hat was done bottom-up, with a doubled hem for extra warmth. Oddly enough, The Mirasol Tika is labeled DK weight, but as I knit it, I would not peg it at anything less than a worsted.

This one was done top down, and the hem turned out to be a problem. The yarn is much softer than it looks, and pulls apart if you so much as look at it funny. Making a sewn bind off was out of the question. I ended up doing a blend of the k2tog and regular cast off.

I settled on the bottom up design, with the doubled brim. I had a hat making blitz, hoping that I could write a pattern that would work. It is available for download on Ravelry. This one is a $3, although I'll still offer some free patterns in the future. This pattern has detailed instructions for making the doubled brim, along with clear photos. It has instructions for an alternate rolled brim. The pattern is also perfect for someone new to stranded knitting, as there is only one color needed for the crown of the hat.

This one was made out of Garnstudio DROPS Nepal. It is a little bulkier yarn than the other three, but knit to the correct tension, it keeps out the wind even better.

You can use the link below, or go to the pattern page on Ravelry to get more details.