FO: Tweed Hat for Knit Aid

This past spring I really enjoyed getting into charity knitting.



Pattern: Improvised. My project page is here.
Size: Adult, approximately 22″ diameter
Yarn: Regia 6-f├Ądig Tweed (discontinued) DK weight, 70% wool / 25% nylon-polyamide / 5% rayon-viscose, in colorway 70; I used about 1 skein, approximately 50 grams, 136 yards/ 124.4 meters
Needles: Size 7 (4.50mm) circular and DPNs
Modifications: n/a

Started: April 24, 2017
Finished: May 10, 2017

I started this hat right after finishing the neckwarmer I made last April, and I worked on it at the first Knit Collective meeting.



I finished it while overlooking the Statue of Liberty, which felt somehow fitting and symbolic for a gesture of solidarity and love for refugees.



I kept within Knit Aid‘s requirements of dark, gender-neutral colors, but I thought it would be nice to use a soft, luxurious-feeling washable tweed. I had originally bought this yarn with the intent to make either slippers or gloves as a gift, so I knew it was squishy and nice against the skin.



The pattern was improvised after working out the gauge and trying it on a few times to figure out where to start the decreases. I worked the crown in quadrants, which gave it a neat, tidy fit.



I recently saw Ai Weiwei’s incredibly moving documentary Human Flow at a screening in Manhattan (trailer below). It was such a heartbreaking, profoundly emotional film that showed the refugee camps and the spirit of the people living in them at the scope and scale of crisis it truly is.



I already felt strongly that I wanted to do something to help, but after seeing the stories and experiences shared in the film, I am more committed than ever to bringing some warmth and love to people’s lives. I donated this hat in May, and I hope that it has found an owner who it is warming and protecting by now, or that it will soon. And I especially hope that whoever owns this hat will feel the love and concern that went into every stitch.

FO – Hello Kitty Hat

My labmate and dear friend Penelope is fairly obsessed with Hello Kitty. When I was brainstorming her Christmas gift, I thought something playful and well, adorable, was in order, and so I made her a Hello Kitty hat.

Pattern: Official Kittyville Hat (Ravelry link) by Kitty Schmidt, free pattern on Kittyville
Size: adult size hat
Yarn: Caron Simply Soft 10-ply aran weight, colors White and Raspberry, 100% acrylic; I used about half a skein of the white, which was approximately 165 yards/ 151 meters and a small amount of the raspberry
Needles: Susan Bates size 7 (4.5 mm) 16″ circular and Knit Picks nickel-plated double-pointed needles, set of 5 size 7 (4.5 mm)
Modifications: Knit hat as written; added bow from the Hello Kitty Hat pattern (Ravelry)

Started: January 12, 2010
Finished: January 13, 2010

I saw a number of almost unbearably cute Hello Kitty hats on Ravelry, but I decided to go with just the bow and ears attached to an otherwise serviceable white hat, as a kind of homage to Hello Kitty, a hat in the spirit without being a literal depiction. Also, this way Penelope could actually be Hello Kitty, and that is way, way more fun.

The pattern was great: straightforward, fast, and easy, making for a very satisfying and enjoyable project. I loved the I-cord and had to refrain from making 3-foot long tassles. The pom-poms look sweet now, but they were quite a hassle to make. I’ve read before that acrylic makes lousy pom-poms, and I think it was only through sheer obsession that I got these to a state I am happy with.

I love the way the ears are constructed from picked-up stitches, knit in two layers that are sewn together for stability and structure. Having the seed stitch echo the lower band and ear flaps was a nice touch. I really like the way the seed stitch looks on this hat, and it didn’t occur to me until I was almost done with it that it’s really no more work than K1, P1 ribbing.

Of course, what makes this project is the bow. My goodness, am I smitten with this bow. It’s such a simple construction (garter stitch rectangle with a smaller rectangle cinching it in at the middle and sewn together), but it comes out utterly adorable. I sewed it down at a coquettish angle, and the hat came alive.

I had so much fun making this hat, and I loved giving it as a gift. Penelope was totally thrilled and looked ridiculously cute. I’m so happy!