Tag Archives: design process

Goldilocks hat, Take 3: Success!

Knowing all that I learned from the two previous hats made this an easy knit for me. The yarn is Anzula For Better or Worsted, 80/10/10 superwash merino, cashmere, and nylon.

A quick selfie for proof of concept. It fits the way I want it to. Now to work on a cowl version for non-hat wearers.

It’s coming along nicely. I’ll also need to work up a smaller version of the hat. And two options for crown shaping, too. So many options for this class project!

I’m writing the pattern in modular units (chart and written instructions) for each motif. And I’m trying to decide for the charts: a separate chart/page each for small hat, large hat, and cowl? Or just chart the motifs with instructions on how to set it up? That would take fewer pages, and that’s how I want to do the written instructions to avoid a 15 page pattern. It’s pretty obvious which motif you’re working, based on stitch count between markers. What do you think?

Onward!

Goldilocks, Take 2

To make the hat shorter? I made the whale tail taller, so I could use fewer repeats. From 3 tails to two. They have more visual pop, too. I put the whale tails on both front and back; that’s visually pleasing.

I added waves to each side of the whale tails. From one side the waves are breaking towards the tail, and from the other side they’re breaking away. Symmetry!

But I don’t like the waves being vertical instead of horizontal; they’re perpendicular to the whale tails. Nope. That’s not how whales swim. (You’d think I would have thought of this while knitting an entire hat, but nooooo.)

On to Take Three!

Swatching, charting, knitting

It was a splendidly beautiful day yesterday; it got up to 67 degrees F (19 C); which is unusual for February in Portland. I took my work outside. My math swatch has paid off, and I’m done with the first section of my new design. The next step required some charting and planning to make stitch counts work out on the repeat (do you sense a theme here?). I want to alternate the variegated and semi-solid, and give the variegated yet another chance to sing. This yarn is Knitted Wit Sock in The Future is Bright and Kiss and Teal.

The book on the table is Lorna Miser’s The Hand Knitter’s Guide to Hand-Dyed and Variegated Yarn. It talks about different dye methods, and how to make the most of them. A lot of the book is about how to recognize if colors will pool, and how to avoid pooling, if desired. There are lots of stitch patterns to play with. I’ve swatched the one that it will be perfect for this project. We shall see.

Sometimes you want colors to pool, and Hunter Hammersen’s Stochastic Hat is an example of that. She worked with Gauge Dyeworks to make a yarn with spaced out color runs, just long enough to knit random color burbles into the hat. (As well as a section to knit a brim all in the contrast color, whoa.) You can use any yarn for this hat, but the thought of knitting it with assigned pooling (the yarn tells you when to make the burbles) is fun.

I was going to knit this hat with Knit Picks Chroma Worsted, but the fuzzy single ply (top) doesn’t want to settle nicely into burbles. The smooth superwash yarn (Malabrigo Rios, below) is much better behaved. I’m not sure I have a hat’s worth in two coordinating colors, though. I’ll poke around a little more. I’m glad I swatched the burbles *before* jumping in and knitting an entire hat brim before finding out my yarn wasn’t going to cooperate! Swatching can be very helpful.

I’m teaching a Zoom class on planned pooling for For Yarn’s Sake on March 6. We’ll talk about planned pooling and assigned pooling. Come knit with me! Register here.

That same weekend I’m teaching Petite Brioche for Twisted (also Zoom). Saturday March 5. If you’d like a jump start into two color brioche in the round, this is it! Register here.

Okay, time to see if my charting made sense, and if my math works out!

Summer knitting: linen adventure and a pattern sale

Well, linen captured my hot weather knitting attention, so that’s what I’m knitting right now. But not this:

I frogged this linen knitting from last summer, and started something with a simple lace pattern. How did I choose? I wanted a fairly narrow stitch pattern, because if I decide this is a winner and want to make it into a real garment pattern, I’d like to size it up or down by complete stitch repeats. The new stitch pattern is 13 stitches wide.

I had previously knit some gauge swatches for this yarn; they were knit flat because that was my intent for it last year. I liked the fabric I got with a US 3 needle (top swatch). My current knitting is still on that US 3 needle, but it’s being knit in the round. And it has a tiny bit of a lace pattern to it, rather than plain stockinette, which was just a little too boring.

Did I knit a new gauge swatch to accommodate those changes? Nope. I probably should have, but my gauge swatches usually lie to me, anyway. So I did some math to find the closest number of stitch pattern repeats that would give me an approximately 40” garment, which would fit like the T shirt I have on right now with 4” of ease. I’m guessing it will come out to 39-40”, but I don’t really know yet.

What I have is a big gauge swatch! I’m planning to work about 40 rows, and then transfer the piece to a stitch holder and give it a wash and block. Then I’ll know for sure if I have the right number of stitches. Wish me luck!

What are you knitting this summer?

To inspire your summer knitting, I’m having a pattern sale through June 21: 15% off with coupon code SUMMER. For newsletter subscribers, the discount is 25% off; the most recent newsletter just went out. (Click here to subscribe if you want the best offers, too. I send newsletters only once or twice per month; I won’t over-fill your inbox! I don’t have that much energy…) All patterns and ebooks which are available from me through my Ravelry shop are eligible; there is no limit but the code is good for a single time use only.

If all my linen talk has you hankering to knit with this fun fiber, may I suggest my Linden Leaf or SeaScape Scarflette? These were designed with linen in mind! And if you can’t decide, you can purchase them together for 25% off, no coupon needed. Previous purchases apply towards the combo discount too; you’ll only be charged the difference towards that 25% off.

Happy knitting!