Day 4: Where are they now? - 2kcbwday4

Write about the fate of a past knitting project. Whether it be something that you crocheted or knitted for yourself or to give to another person. An item that lives with you or something which you sent off to charity. To me, this prompt make me think about the Cousin Hats for Waub, Musky, Gig and Meegis.

I started knitting with a vengence in the summer I was keen to show off my skills. During a trip to Ottawa for a friends wedding I brought along some of my knitting to show off to my relatives with whom I was staying for the weekend. While I was there I brought along a hat I had knit out of KnitPicks Elegance (baby alpaca and silk), which sadly had been discontinued. My aunt commented how much she would love to give her boys (three grown sons and a 5-year-old grandson) handknit hats like that one for Christmas.  Looking to impress my aunt, I agreed to make her the hats for the cost of the materials.

Thus began the saga of the Cousin Hats.  I had told her that I would only be making a single pattern in different colors and she would sort out who got which one (although one was to be smaller for her grandson).  I finally settled on the Top-Down Timothy Cap by Splindarella, which because it was top down and ribbed I could take advantage of the maximum amount of material, KnitPicks Andean Treasure (100% baby alpaca), and fit some very differently sized heads.

The project was painful for me, not only making four identical hats, but HAVING to make them and by a specific date. It took all the fun out of knitting. The only saving grace was the materials, the alpaca was nice, and didn't make me want to harm anyone with it.

So, I toiled through the hat making process, finishing them up well before their deadline.  As it turns out my aunt wanted me to give them to my cousins myself so they could thank me appropriately (which was very nice of her) and the two I did see (who are older than me) immediately picked their favorite and left the last one for their little brother.  The oldest of the three, Waub, is an on-camera reporter for the CBC (and has a book coming out in May, Midnight Sweatlodge) and he promised he would wear it on camera and send me a picture.

So, that is where one of them is now, forever immortalized on film.

Waub Hat

So I learned a few things from making these hats:

1. I don't do commission knitting 2. I am a Selfish Knitter 3. Getting your knitting on TV is really cool (particularly when your cousin gets all sorts of compliments on it when he posts the picture on Facebook for you)

FO: Belle Starr Hat

 

Back in the summer when KnitPicks released their first yarn that contains cashmere, Capra, I picked up a ball. At DK weight and 123yds/50g, there wasn't an excessive amount of yarn to make something wonderful and squishy out of.  So it sat in my stash improving with age, and I finally found this pattern, which worked great.  I used almost exactly 100 yds, leaving me a bit of scrap, but not much.

Project Name:  Belle Starr Hat

Pattern: Belle Starr Hat by Anne Podlesak of How the West was Spun (and of the Ennea Collective)

Recipient: Me

Yarn: Capra by KnitPicks in Harbor

Modifications: Just one

  • Didn't gauge swatch so I just went up a needle size (which is my default), and when I finished casting on 90 stitches, I though it was too small so I added 10 more, so I had one more "panel" than the design.

New Skills: Nothing really, it was a fun quick knit, with an easy pattern, clear pattern.

Feedback: Nice, easy, clear pattern.  Great use of a small amount of yarn (I only had one ball of Capra (123yds).

Re-Knit?: Maybe, I have a bunch of handspun kicking around in strange weights and short lengths that would be perfect for this pattern.  I may find different lace patterns for the bottom panels.

FO: Oxblood Tam

This hat, which I finished over a week ago, took me a while to blog because it went straight off of the blocking board (and plate) onto my head.  I have been wanting to make this hat, and its matching mittens ever since I finished my Hawthorne Scarf this fall.  The Snapdragon Set (the hat and mittens) use a similar leaf/pod design (with a 5 into 1 stitch) to the Hawthorne and both look fantastic in madelinetosh Tosh DK.  I am so in love with the madtosh look I currently have two more WIPs that are in their yarns (different bases than the Tosh DK, and they are fantastic as well).

Project Name:  Oxblood Tam

Pattern: Snapdragon Tam by Ysolda Teague

Recipient: Me

Yarn: Tosh DK by madelinetosh in Oxblood

Modifications:

  • After reading about how large and floppy the hat could be, I decided to knit the Medium size and because of my consistently tight knitting I knitted the rib brim at the suggested needle size and then went up one needle size (to a US 7) to knit the rest of the hat.

New Skills:

  • None – But it was my first tam, which is a hat style which seems to flatter me so I will probably be making more tams.

Feedback:  As with all Ysolda patterns, this one was clear. attractive and makes a beautiful finished object. The cables are attractive and the chart was easy to follow, I didn't ever feel the need to refer to the written directions but they looked clear and in large enough print. The sizing was a bit funny and I have found that the band stretched out quite quickly.  If I were to make this hat again, I would go down a few more needle sizes for the band to make it tighter without having to edit the stitch pattern, because the ribbing flows beautifully into the cable pattern.

Re-Knit?: It will probably be re-knit to replace if this one were to get lost or destroyed.

On Felting and Finished Objects

It has taken me a few days to get these up, but I had another great course at the Gateway Fibreworks back on Saturday. This time we were focusing on a single type of felting, wet felting. I present, without comment, by Steampunk Felted Dragon Mittens

I wish I had a picture of the merino braid beforehand, but needless to say it had strong varegation.  Although they are not my usual colors, I love the way they turned out.  We used fuffy white alpaca for the inside, milled on-site.

As with the previous week, the instruction from Gail and Vikki was amazing, and materials beautiful.  I wish they were closer to Parry Sound, the hour long drive to Gravenhurst is a bit tough to swing, especially because the Starbucks doesn't open in time to get caffeinated before the drive.

Since finishing those mitts on Saturday, I have finished two other projects.

On Tuesday, I finished Clapotis.  While this pattern seemed to have spread with the virulence of an infectious disease through the knitting community, I remained immune to its charm until I discovered Dream in Color Starry.  The plain, but attractive. pattern, plus an amazing material worked out to a beautiful product.  I will be debuting it in a post sometime in the next few days.

Okay, maybe just a sneak-peek.

After finishing such a repetitive and lengthy pattern I was inspired to make something quick.  Some Knit Picks Swish Bulky and a hat pattern were just the thing I needed. My Winter Leaves hat, using the Foliage Pattern out of Knitty, was finished less than 24 hours after starting.  I quite love this hat already, and I am sad that the Squirrel Heather I used has been discontinued.

Either way, I have had a productive week, and it is only Thursday!