FO: Bonnie Isle Hat

Ohhhh, pretty!

Bonnie Isle Hat stranded colorwork knitting

Isn’t it lovely? It’s the Bonnie Isle Hat by Linda Shearer for Shetland Wool Week. The pattern is free for a limited time.

See how smooth and even my stitches are? They weren’t when they came off the needles! Stranded colorwork isn’t finished until it’s been blocked. This hat is currently drying after a soak. You may also wonder why there’s a string hanging off the bottom. The designer suggests putting a strand of “a strong yarn” through the ribbing and pulling it in a bit while it dries. This helps make the brim lie flat and a bit more snug.

I usually block my keps over this bowl, so the top lays out flat.

Like this. But this time I just laid the folded hat on top of the bowl (top picture), because I didn’t want it to stretch lengthwise, and I didn’t want to leave a ridge where it hits the edge of the bowl. I kept rearranging it as it dried, so it didn’t get any creases in it.

I bought the yarn pack for this from For Yarn’s Sake; I’m not the best color combiner on my own! I love this particular combination. There are five different colorways, in case you’d like a little help with your colors, too.

I’m teaching a stranded colorwork class for For Yarn’s Sake via Zoom on Sunday, November 6. We’ll talk about stranded colorwork knitting, managing multiple yarns, yarn color dominance, and blocking. We’ll use this pattern as a jumping off point, but the techniques are applicable to all stranded colorwork. I’ll also talk about how I adjusted the size of my hat via stitch count (because I don’t like tiny needles, and I like the fabric I get using a US3). Register here if you’re interested!

Most horrifying moment? After I had sewn in the ends, wondering why there was one really loose purple strand inside the hat, and then discovering that I had dropped a stitch and it the whole column was running. It was one of those dark purple lines going in to the center. I fixed it (hooray for sticky yarn that doesn’t slip-slide away too quickly!). I can tell which line it is, but I don’t think it’s too obvious.

Now…does this hat need a pompom? I’m probably too lazy to ever get around to making one!

12 responses to “FO: Bonnie Isle Hat

  1. Maybe one of those furry fluffy ones could be fun.

  2. I vote against a pompom. I rarely see them on hats in Lerwick. Do you know that Shetlanders don’t block but “dress” their lace? I’m not sure if they use that same term for color work but I like the word.

    I’m delighted you are teaching the class and spreading the skill so excellently done in the isles. Once at a tea in Shetland I saw a woman walking and talking while knitting many colors from her knitting belt. I love to knit fair isle but have yet to become that proficient.

  3. No pompom, please !
    Yes, it’s super, Michele ! – but stranded knitting is so far out of my area of craft activity as to be .. well, something else.
    However, I do admire the skill – like anything !!

  4. Ditto on no pompom! The hat is too pretty and you don’t want to hide the colorwork!

  5. Sheryl Krohne

    Great hat! Love the WoolWeek keps. Beautiful job knitting it. No pompom, the top design is too lovely to hide.

    • This is my third Shetland Wool Week kep, and it’s my favorite so far! The stitch pattern repeats are smaller than on Katie’s Kep and da Crofter’s Kep, so they were a breeze to memorize.


  6. Andrea Roosth

    This is a super helpful inspiring blog entry! Thank you! and: what a gorgeous piece of knitting!

  7. Your hat turned out great! I like colorway #1 – the mostly gray one – for myself. But this version is lovely and cheerful!