Saturday, August 31, 2013

August 2013 #2 - Slouch This!

Aha, I made it before the end of the month! Really, given the craziness of back-to-school these past several weeks this is actually quite the accomplishment for me. And sadly this particular hat is one that has an even longer history since it was started last year. Yes, last October to be exact. But I ran out of the dark gray and then Berroco was having some production issues and yarn was hard to come by, so I simply took the hat off the needles and put it away. I was cleaning out my yarn closet recently, found the project, ordered some yarn, and although it didn't match the original yarn as closely in color as I would have liked, it was enough that I was happy enough to finish up the hat and move on.

Although the pattern is probably not widely unique, it is an original and the pattern is available for free as a Ravelry download. I used Berroco Comfort in Kidz Orange, Dusk, Smokestack, Primary Yellow and Primary Blue on a size 7 16" circular needle and a set of 7 dpns. Stitches used are knit and k2tog with a provisional cast on. It's a great hat for a small boy to young teen. It fits my adult son, but without enough slouch for his liking so he has suggested changes for another version and has already picked out his yarn. I guess I best get busy.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

August 2013 #1 - Blue Honey

Can you believe I missed July entirely? I'm ashamed to admit it but life just got a bit too busy. My daughter bought a new house and the time I would spend knitting was instead spent helping her. Still a worthy cause, but certainly far more physically demanding. I had brought several hats with me to work on and all my knitting simply sat untouched as I was too tired each night to even think about picking up my yarn and needles. I'll try to make up some extras over the coming months, but I have some hand surgery in my future so I think it may be a struggle just keeping up from here on out for awhile. Please be patient with me.

With the summer months upon us I was looking for a pattern that would offer the wearer a style that offered coverage while letting in a bit of a breeze. I found Op. 11 by EatingLemonKnitKnitKnit. I used Berroco Weekend for the main body in Starry Night and Cascade Yarns Pima Tencel in Purple Ice for the ribbing on a size 7 16" circular needle and a set of 7 dpns. Stitches used are knit, purl, yarn over, slip stitch, psso, and k2tog. I had made the had previously in a wool yarn for another charity and created a seam like affect. Of course, I thought I could do better and made adjustments to the pattern. Wrong! The adjustments are not really noticeable, but they were a pain to keep adjusting for. Which is most likely why the pattern was written why it was. Which is why I shouldn't have thought I knew better. Silly me. I like the pattern, it was quick, it was easy, and it is pretty.

Oh, and if you're curious about the name...I thought the pattern created a honeycomb look. I'm running out of ideas of hat names and I've got this thing about naming my hats.  I know, I need a life. LOL

Thursday, July 4, 2013

June 2013 #2 - Simply Summer

Man I really dislike falling so far behind in posting my work, but at times it simply can not be helped. You would think that perhaps I hadn't gotten any knitting done during the actual month of June, but in fact, I was quite productive having finished off four additional hats between my first posting and this one. After designing the Mixed-Up May I found it to be such a fun hat I continued to make a few more of them.

This particular hat was to be a very simple summer hat in a nice easy cotton. I just started knitting making up the pattern as I went and then got a bit carried away with the bind-off. I used Lion Brand Cotton Ease in Snow on a size 7 16" circular needle and a set of 7 dpns. Stitches used are knit, kfb and a picot bind-off. Overall I'm pleased with the end result, but think perhaps the green band should be just a slight bit narrower. Let me know what you think, is it worth writing up the pattern? Or are there plenty of sun hat patterns already available?

Friday, June 14, 2013

June 2013 #1 - Flower Bucket

You may have noticed that this is a repeated hat pattern from June 2012 and wondering why I was counting it as a new pattern? Because it isn't, and even though it is my own silly rule about what I blog about and what I don't I've chosen to feature this hat as my first hat of the month because I've not done a hand sewn felted embellishment like this before. So I'm adding this one as something new on a technicality.

The pattern, A Better Bucket by Amy Swenson, is available as a Ravelry download. I used Hobby Lobby I Love This Cotton! in Spunky Print on a size 7 16" circular needle and a set of 7 dpns. Stitches used are knit, purl, k2tog, kfb and a provisional cast on. I used the crochet cast on method as described in Knit Speak by Adrea Berman Price. Again, the cast one was a bit slow, but that's just me. As much as I love this hat, I feel that it really needs something. A button, an embellishment of some kind. So even though I've had the hat finished for quite some time, and I knew I wanted to do something with purple, I never got around to actually finishing it. The flower is hand sewn with embroidery floss (because I couldn't find my glue gun). The green leaves and large purple petals are the same size. I added a seam down the middle of the petals to give them some depth. I them added two additional layers of smaller petals adjusting the sizes as I went and topping them off with a purchased pre-formed yellow felt button. The flower is backed on a circle and then a safety pin is sewn on in order to allow for it's removal so that the hat can still be washed if needed.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

May 2013 #2 - Purple's OK

In these past few weeks we have seen some rather wild weather in the Midwest, most notable the devastation in Moore Oklahoma. The images on our TV and computer screens tug at our hearts and we find ourselves asking, "What can we do to help?" Halos of Hope is answering that question by using their organizational outreach in Campaign for Oklahoma. The need may be great since the medical facility that services local cancer patients was one of the many buildings completely destroyed by the tornado. The goal is 150 adult sized summer weight cotton or cotton blend hats.

To help, I gathered up my needles and made Spring Beret available as a Ravelry download. I used Lily Sugar'n Cream Scents in Lavender on a size 7 16" circular needle and a set of 7 dpns. Stitches used are knit, purl, yarn over, slip, k2tog, and psso. The pattern is available in both a slouchy and less slouchy version. Mine is the less slouchy version, which is still pretty slouchy. Although the pattern was fairly simple, I had a heck of time keeping the right amount of stitches between markers because I was consistently forgetting one of the steps, leaving me with either too many or not enough stitches . I think I'm just brain challenged when it comes to working with those darn yarn overs.  

Oh and did you notice I've stopped apologizing for late postings.  I think this is just become my life.  Anyway, why not join me in helping make a hat or two (or three) to help Halos of Hope achieve their goal?

Thursday, May 30, 2013

May 2013 #1 - Mixed-up May

We are more than third of the way through the year and my posting tardiness unfortunately continues.  Not only was spring taking longer than expected to reach me but the month was more than a bit out of the ordinary since I could have sworn I had already posted a hat for the month.  Oops!  However, I did want to try something completely different this month so I thought I'd try my hand at designing a hat with lots of different colors and stitch changes. Just for fun. Just because I needed the challenge. I don't think I came up with anything revolutionary, but I feel its a cute little hat. I certainly could have been more thoughtful in the color choices, but I simply grabbed whichever color was closest as I tend to over think my color choices as a general rule and I was "trying" to be different.

The pattern is available on my pattern page and as a Ravelry download. I used Berroco Comfort in Chambray, Goldenrod, Copen Blue, Ivory, Pimpernel, Hummus, Seedling, Rosebud (from the brim up). I used 16" size 7 circular needle and 1 set of size 7 dpn. Stitches used are knit, purl, K2tog, and an adapted Small Fancy Twist from Potter Craft's 400 Knitting Stitches. Although I used plenty of color I believe the hat would look equally as nice in fewer colors or with only one color.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

April 2013 #2 - Star Struck

Even though it was not finished in April it was started in April, so I'm counting it as my April hat. As I've mentioned I've really struggled with the "star" theme. I had this idea in my head of wanting to put just one big star on a hat but just could not find a pattern that would work the way I wanted. And believe me, I tried many different options, both knitted and crocheted. I finally remembered that I had been gifted Melody Griffiths 201 Crochet Motifs, Blocks, Projects, and Ideas book. Viola! I finally found what I was looking for. Did the hat turn out exactly like the vision in my brain? Not really, but I'm moving on...

The pattern, Cecily Beanie, is available as a Knitting daily download. I used Berroco Comfort in Copen Blue on a size 7 16" circular needle and a set of 7 dpns. Stitches used are knit, purl and k2tog. I prefer to knit in the round so I modified the pattern by c/o 88 stitches and then changed the decrease sequence to match. The star motif is in Berroco Comfort Ivory on a G hook. Stitches used are chain, single crochet, half double crochet and slip stitch. As usual, I really can't read crochet patterns so I sort of half followed the directions, but in the end it sort of looks like the picture. Perhaps I need to really learn how to crochet some day. Yeah, when I have time. LOL

Sunday, April 21, 2013

April 2013 #1 - Sparkly Blue

I've had a sort of knitters block these past several months trying to be creative for the Halos of Hope Camp Happy Times Campaign of "stars". Obviously I try to do my best for the kids, but golly, I've just not been able to wrap my head around this theme, and I can not for the life me understand why. It has sort of just shut me down creatively. That and the fact I've been going to physical therapy as a result of small injury from a January fall on the ice. So to help me over the bump, I decided to step away from the campaign and just knit a hat.

I simply c/o 88 stitches knit for five inches and begin decreases adding a knit round between decrease rounds until the "k3, k2tog" round after which I omitted the knit rounds. (I just like the way the crown lies better, it's a personal preference) I had some donated Berroco Candy FX in Ocean Spirit held together with Classic Elite Provence in Island Blue and Cascade Yarns Pima Tencel in Misty Lavender on a size 6 16" circular needle and a set of 6 dpns. Stitches used are knit and k2tog. I didn't have enough of either of the cottons so I figured I would just combine them into one. After finishing the hat I probably should have made the hat into consistent stripes, but...

Now that finally made I hat, I need to get busy. I've got some catching up to do.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

March 2013 #1 - Yoda Hat, This Is

Yes, hmmmm. I went with rather a different take on the "star" theme for Camp Happy Times for this particular hat. And if I'm allowed to say so, isn't it cute? Of course I found the pattern on Ravelry, and knit it up rather quickly.

The pattern, The Force You Shall Feel - Yoda Inspired Hat, is available as a Ravelry download. I used Berroco Comfort in Marum on a size 7 16" circular needle and a set of 7 dpns. Stitches used are knit, purl, k2tog and SSK. Figuring out the ears was a bit of issue. I wanted them to stand out, but wasn't quite sure how get the look I wanted, yet keep the hat washable. I finally realized I could use pipe cleaners, which actually worked out well.

Monday, March 4, 2013

February 2013 #2 - Stars!

Well here it is March and I'm finally getting my second February hat posted. Not that it hasn't been finished for about two weeks. But I just didn't get it photographed, and I hate writing about a hat without putting up a picture. It's a thing I have.

This versatile hat is actually an original design. Or at least original to me, since I haven't seen another hat constructed exactly like this one. Similar perhaps, but not precisely the same. I've made some changes to the top portion in the second version I just finished and will be writing up the instructions soon. However, I feel the real "star" of the hat are the stars themselves. The pattern is available as a Ravelry download. I used Berroco Comfort in Hackberry Heather for the hat with five stars made from Lidfors, Primary Yellow, Pearl, Chambray and Robin's Egg. The hat is knit on a size 7 16" circular needle and a set of 7 dpns the stars crocheted with a size G hook. Stitches used for the hat are knit, purl, k2tog and SSK. Crochet stitches used for the stars were chain, single crochet, half double crochet, double crochet, triple crochet, and slip stitch. I did modify the pattern to decrease the rays from "ch 6" to "ch 5" in order to create a slightly tighter, more compact star. I then attached the stars to the hat with the wrong side showing because I thought there was a bit of puffiness about the way they sat on the hat and I liked the texture of the wrong side stitches.

Friday, February 22, 2013

February 2013 #1 - Celestial Swing

My favorite hat charity, Halos of Hope, is again collecting hats for their Camp Happy Times Campaign. This year's theme - "Stars", which leaves a wide open field of ideas. I was struggling a bit with the theme because I wasn't really feeling it so I decided to just knit a simple hat and then add some embellishment by way of a literal interpretation with the adding of a felted moon and star.

I made up the pattern as I went, but I wouldn't say it was that original. I used Red Heart Stripes in Breezy Stripe on a size 8 16" circular needle and a set of 8 dpns. Stitches used are knit, purl and k2tog. I cast on 72 stitches, did a simple k2p2 ribbing for 2" and then stockinette stitch for 5" from the edge before beginning the decrease rounds. Each decrease round is followed by two rounds of straight knitting. Decrease rounds begin with (k10, k2tog) around and continue until there are six stitches remaining on the needles. I then added six scrap pieces of yarn and braided them into two pieces approximately 3" long, to which I attached the moon and star felted shapes.

This hat could easily be adapted to have other felt shapes such as hearts, flowers, shamrocks, etc.

Monday, January 21, 2013

January 2013 #1 - Big Bold Tassel

This seemingly simple hat takes the prize for having taken me the longest to finish. How long? 376 days to be precise. It's a simple hat, so why so long? The hat itself was started and finished on New Year's Day 2012. What I couldn't bring myself to work on was a stupid pom pom for the crown. I am pom pom challenged. For whatever reason, when I make them, they just look under-fed and sort of sad. So this wonderful hat sat in my closet for much too long. In the meantime I've gone on to knit many a hat (68 for 2012), both for Halos of Hope and for other charities. What prompted me to finally finish this hat? I've lost my hat making mojo. While some might not think this situation a problem, for me it is akin to a major crisis. So I thought perhaps bringing this out of hiding and finishing it up would help me find my way.

The pattern, Scoops! by Ashley Solley, is available as a Ravelry download. I used Berroco Comfort in Seedling, Lidfors, Pimpernel and Aster on a size 8 16" circular needle and a set of 8 dpns. Stitches used are knit, purl, and SSK. I did attempt to make a pom pom for the top, but failed, yet again. So decided instead to make a tassel. I used this great little wood tray that was once my grandmother's. It was intended for this purpose, but it worked beautifully and I think the tassel adds to the hat's overall appeal.

I hope this is the rejuvenation of my mojo because I love making hats. I want to make hats. I need to make hats.