As the weather turns…more hats


I typically proceed through the world hatless. It takes super cold weather or knowing I’ll be out in the cold for prolonged periods before I wear a hat. But still hats are among my favorite things to knit. You only need to make one. And gauge isn’t super important because I always have access to some some head of the right size. Twenty below this winter in Michigan has even managed to improve my personal attitude toward wearing hats.

This is “Totallee Slouchee” by Jo-Anne Klim, of KBJ Designs. The pattern is available for purchase on Ravelry. The hat uses an interesting, easy, slipped-rib brim. Slouch seems to be a currently popular style and this hat slouches nicely.

My Slouchee is knit in my new favorite self-striping DK weight yarn: Merino Extrafine Color 120 by Schachenmayr Original,  I used the London Mix colorway. The yarn had no knots or color breaks in the two skeins I used. I’ve since found some knots in another colorway I used for a project, but these two skeins were perfect. One of the cool things about this yarn? The skein has a slotted band with the proper end to pull taped and easily accessible. No more yarn barf!


This next hat is Amy van de Laar’s “Paper Planes” from her Paper Hats series. The hat features a ring of classic paper airplanes as seen from above, outlined with twisted stitches that make for nice crisp edges. Well, honestly, you have to let your imagination roam a bit to see that. Still, it’s an interesting design.



The pattern and the entire series of origami-inspired hats are available for purchase on Ravelry. This was a fun knit. I used String Theory Caper Sock. Caper Sock is an 80% merino, 10% cashmere, 10% nylon mix that worked up beautifully in this pattern. I’d have been a tad more pleased with this toddler-sized hat if I had increased the length to the crown decreases by an inch or two.

This next one is Alicia Plummer’s “Rainy Tuesday.” The large-size version, which mine is, maintains the raindrops motif around the entire hat. It’s an appealing stylish hat. The challenges the pattern presents are all surmountable, with a bit of experience and a bit ‘o help from your Ravelry-mates.


My Rainy Tuesday is knit in Plymouth Yarn Worsted Merino Superwash. Great yarn with excellent stitch definition.

Here’s a few more views of Plummer’s Hat.


Rainy_Tuesday2The instruction for taming those pointy crown decreases was to block aggressively. I haven’t tried that yet, but it’s a tall order. I’m prepared to declare it a design feature.

Raw Honey


This is Raw Honey, a fingerless mitt design by Alicia Plummer of Two Little Plums. Plummer writes on her website that she designs because “she wears her heart on her sleeve” and “designing is a perfect outlet for self-expression.” Wearing your heart on your hands works too. This is a nifty fingerless mitt design for worsted weight. Very cozy.

I knit a size medium in Harrisville Design’s WATERshed, a 10-ply worsted. The pair needed 74 grams.The Barn Door reddish-brown colorway and this rustic yarn seemed perfect for the design.The pattern was error-free and easily understood. A great quick knit.

I’m not sure where the “raw honey” fits in, but inspired by the title, I gifted this pair to my local beekeeper.

Two cabled hats

pompompomThis is Vogue Knitting’s Pompom Hat, included in their Ultimate Hat Book. The pattern calls for Berroco Vintage Chunky and I happened to have a few skeins of it left over from a sweater project. My young neighbor selected this pattern from the many she looked through and I think she made a great choice. It was a fun project, even though I had to knit it twice. The one above is knitted on size 9 US and is significantly under gauge, but it remains a large hat. Here’s a view that shows the top, pre-pompom.


This one, knit on size 11 needles is still knit a tad under gauge and yet it’s a bit too large even for my giantess head.



2pompomMy one improvement was to change to knitting in the round. No seam. And it makes the charts so much easier to knit because you don’t have to remember that the knit and purl symbols alternate.

Here’s another recent cabled hat project, Alicia Plummer’s (Two Little Plums) Knotted Pine. I knit mine in Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino:


The front panel of this hat is what drew me to it. The pattern is making quite a splash on Ravelry and I think that front panel is the “secret” to its success. My sense, though, is that there’s a bit too much “technique” in this pattern. The designer has short rows in the ribbing. Knitting in the round, in 1 by 1 ribbing, has a directionality to it. When you turn and change directions, the stitches lean in the opposite direction. You can see that, unfortunately, prominently displayed in everyone’s Knotted Pine. It’s not the end of the world but, to me, using short rows to add depth to part of the ribbing isn’t a good idea.

Here’s a view of the interesting top construction. The entire hat can be knitted on circulars, no double-points needed because there is no crown decrease.

pinetrees_sideThe back of the hat is knitted in twisted stockinette: knit one round, next round knit through the back loop. An interesting effect. Here’s the back. You can see that the end of the round creates a rather prominent vertical, but that doesn’t bother me (much).