Sunday, 3 February 2008

Sailors' Society Woolly Hat 1

Here's my first hat for the Sailors' Society. I've been knitting industriously lately; it's good for my temper. I finished this some time ago but didn't get around to finding someone to model it in daylight - at this time of year, it's still dark by the time I get home. Here is my Mum wearing it for me.

Just over 1 ball, annoyingly, of Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran, or any equivalent found in the John Lewis bargain box.
Set of 4 4.5mm double-pointed needles.

Gauge is not that crucial, but when laid out flat and unstretched the hat measures 12cm across half way up and 16cm across at the bottom, where the number of stitches is the same but the cast-on flares it out a bit.

Cast on 72 with a stretchy cast on, and join.

All k stitches will be twisted (knitted through the back, "kb"). You could make it even stretchier by purling through the back as well, but I think it's too much trouble. Or you might use a little less wool by knitting normally, but the texture would be less pleasing, the twists wouldn't look as good, and the stretch would be less.

Rows 1 to 11: *k2b, p2, repeat from * to end.
Row 12: kb 2nd st on left hand needle, then first st, slip both off left hand needle. (This is the same as slipping the first stitch to a cable needle but quicker). P2. Repeat.

Knit 2 more pattern repeats, then 12 more rows like row 1. You could probably reduce this to 6 and still have it long enough; I wanted it to cover the ears quite generously.

Make it hat-shaped by decreasing one stitch at 6 points around on every row. I did this by narrowing each rib in turn, first the purls, till all the purl ribs were one wide, then the knits, then eliminating the purls. This gives a nice, even look without an obvious star-shape. Do this till you only have 6 stitches left. Pass yarn through the last 6 sts and work in all the ends.

It looks very small, laid out flat, but the twisted knits make it very stretchy. It fits me well and I have quite a large head. They also give it a nice visual texture.

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