Wednesday, February 04, 2009


It is supposed to be the culmination of a knitters work, the reason for the craft, the act of love: We are supposed to keep our family warm. Am I less of a knitter because my family lives in Hawai'i and has no need of knitwear? Or am I just a warm, purposeless knitter?

Finally, a commission for warmth! My mother shall be traveling to Ohio later this month, and presented me with a task... Nay! A Quest! In my mailbox, she wrapped up an old crocheted hat, a new, beautiful skein of yarn, and a note of her somewhat cryptic, long and loopy handwriting.

The hat I should use for sizing, as it was loose, warm, and comfy, and had a thick, turned up brim that had the dual purpose of keeping the ears warm. The yarn was purchased from my friend Jan at the farmers market. Jan has the Hawaiian Homegrown Wool Company, and has raised the Romney wool, sheared, cleaned, processed, spun, dyed, and skeined up the yarn for sale at the farmers market.
I used Marnie MacLean's Nautilus pattern, and since I deny gauge swatches I just ripped into it... and ripped it out twice when it was too large. When it covered my ears, I added a purl row turning ridge (which was a bad idea since it wants to turn under like a hem instead of out like a hat!) and finished the brim on smaller needles and reduced 10 stitches for a somewhat too sporty ribbed brim.

The flower is somewhat abbreviated from Sweet Honey Beret by Faina Goberstein, published in this winter's Interweave Knits. Both the model hat and the pink yarn skein weighed 80 grams, so I figured I was safe, although I know nothing about crocheted yarn usage. This hat was knit from the top down, and I figured a white stripe would set off the white and pink flower (although it could have been a narrower stripe). I spun the white yarn to match, using Jan's roving. As it was, I nearly ran out of yarn, and the white stripe was needed for length. I finished the hat, and used the tiny bit of pink left for the flower. I have only a length of about 12 inches left of the pink! Perfect!

DBF thinks it looks totally 20's and very pretty, and he thinks Mom will like it. And it will actually be worn against the cold! Maybe even in the snow! So exciting!


Tvini said...

Adorable hat, adorable story.

Stilaholic Nartian knits said...

What a darling hat! Your mom will definitely be warm and stylish in it.

Sinje Ollen said...

That is a very pretty hat! You have quite a bit of stamina to have unraveled it and re-knit it twice! I always have trouble with hats, so I'm quite impressed. Beautiful flower, too! :-)