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Archive for January 2nd, 2003

Completed Purple Hat!

Thursday, January 2nd, 2003

hat, copyright LynnH 2003It’s done! I sewed on the last bit of the I-cord headband last night, and I get to wear my new fuzzy hat to work with the kids today. My computer room is often very cold, as it is in a building built around 1920, a building almost impossible to heat or cool efficiently. I need my berets indoors almost every day. (I really need to knit a stole also, but haven’t been inspired to do it yet.)

I am so very pleased with how I made this hat fit. The patterns I’ve used thus far for berets (actually they are tams, knit in the round and usually knit from the brim to the center top… berets appear to be knit flat on a machine and seamed before fulling). I have tried a rolled edge several times, I’ve tried ribbing. I’ve tried a casing to hold elastic. They either are too loose, or so springy that they slip off the head.

hat, copyright LynnH 2003I finally figured that I-cord (a three-to-six stitch knitted tube) would be firm enough to not fall off my head, and as similar to the edge on my commercial berets to perhaps actually work. The patterns I’ve seen that use I-cord, though, attach the cord to the body of the hat as you knit the I-cord. This assumes you know the perfect number of rows to knit the I-cord before you try it on. I didn’t like that idea, it seemed to promise infinite ripping out and re-knitting. So I knit the hat from the brim up (no band) and then I knit an I-cord, continually trying it on my head until it fit exactly as I wished. I grafted together the two ends of the I-cord (kitchener stitch, not fun on a small fuzzy tube).

This is where my years as a handsewer came in handy. I divided up the band into eight equal measurements, and did the same with the circumference of the hat brim. I matched those locations (there was a bit more brim than band as expected) and then hand stitched the two together, matching at the 1/8 markers. It is great!

I now have only two active knitting projects, and one waiting to be active again. I’ve been knitting a few rows at a time on a rug made from Peace Fleece yarn, which may take forever because I’m allergic to the wool. I have the same problem (itchy eyes) with Philosopers Wool, but when I wash the item I have no trouble with it at all. If I had realized I would have trouble with this yarn, I would have washed it before starting. By the time my excited self realized I had trouble, I was unwilling to unknit the piece and wash it. For now it’s a few rows at a time. Some things are worth the wait.

My only truly active projects is pair of purple alpaca sox in sportweight (pure luxury) which are my knit-in-line sox for traveling. And now I’m planning to re-start on a sweater I started the first week in September. This is the sweater I spent time working on with my knitting teacher the other day. The sweater will require more thinking than I can do out of the house so it will go slowly, too.