The Wistful Hat Pattern

wistfulhat_front
wistfulhat_top

I find knitting hats a great way to use up those single hanks of fingering weight sock yarn purchased at a yarn shop or at a craft festival. Although I could use these single hanks of sock yarn for knitting socks, I much prefer to knit hats, shawlettes or cowls with them. Hats are useful in keeping our heads warm, make wonderful gifts, are small enough projects to be knit quickly, and a great way to learn and explore the different knit stitch patterns and techniques.

I named this hat “The Wistful Hat” because I purchased the yarn a few years back from a yarn shop I had newly found but regrettably it is no longer there now. The Wistful Hat is knit bottom up and in the round. It’s knit holding two strands of the same yarn together with a simple textured knit stitch pattern for the body and crown shaping in stockinette stitch. The brim of the hat can be folded for extra warmth. 

Yarn:  Plymouth Yarn® Happy Feet 100 in color 0110 or any other colorway of choice
Knitting Needles: US #4 and US #5 circular needles for knitting the hat and US #6 knitting needles for the cable cast on 
Tapestry needle to weave in ends
Gauge:  6 stitches /  8.75 rows per inch in stockinette stitch with US #4 knitting needles
Size: Adult M/L 
Abbreviations:
K: Knit
P: Purl
pm: place marker
rm: remove marker
sm: slip marker
BOR: beginning of round
Ktbl: knit through the back loop
K2tog: Knit the two stitches on the left needle together
[ ]: stitch pattern repeats

The Wistful Hat Pattern (text and images for personal use only)

The brim of the hat:

  • Cast on 128 stitches with two strands of yarn held together using the cable cast on method and with US #6 knitting needles. 
  • Transfer the stitches to US #4 circular knitting needles, place a BOR marker and join the round making sure the yarn is not twisted.
    wistfulhat_begin
  • Knit in 1 x 1 rib stitch pattern (K1,P1) for 32 rounds or about 4 inches.
    wistfulhat_ribstitchroundswistfulhat_endofribstitch

The body of the hat:

  • Change to US #5 circular needles and begin the textured stitch pattern as follows:
    • Round 1: [Ktbl, P1] repeat [ ] till BOR marker, slip BOR marker
    • Round 2: Knit till BOR marker, slip BOR marker
    • Round 3: [P1, Ktbl] repeat [ ] till BOR marker, slip BOR marker
    • Round 4: Knit till BOR marker, slip BOR marker
  • Repeat Rounds 1 to 4 six more times and then knit
    • Round 1: [Ktbl, P1] repeat [ ] till BOR marker, slip BOR marker
    • Round 2: Knit till BOR marker, slip BOR marker
    • Round 3: [P1, Ktbl] repeat [ ] till BOR marker, slip BOR marker
    • Round 4: [K16, pm] repeat [ ] 6 more times, K16, slip BOR marker

wistfulhat_patternstitch

The crown shaping of the hat:

  • Change to US #4 circular knitting needles and knit for the crown shaping
    • Round 1: [Knit to 2 stitches before marker, K2tog, sm] repeat [ ] 6 more times, knit to 2 stitches before marker, K2tog, slip BOR marker
    • Round 2: [Knit to marker, sm] repeat [ ] 6 more times, knit till BOR marker, slip BOR marker

wistfulhat_crownshaping

  • Repeat Rounds 1 and 2 five more times (80 stitches) and then knit the following rounds
    • Round 1: [K3, K2tog, pm, K3, K2tog, sm] repeat [ ] 6 more times, K3, K2tog, pm, K3, K2tog, slip BOR marker
    • Round 2: [Knit to marker, sm] repeat [ ] 14 more times, knit to BOR marker, slip BOR marker
    • Round 3: [K2, K2tog, sm] repeat [ ] 14 more times, K2, K2tog, slip BOR marker
    • Round 4: [Knit to marker, sm] repeat [ ] 14 more times, knit to BOR marker, slip BOR marker
    • Round 5: [K1, K2tog, sm] repeat [ ] 14 more times, K1, K2tog, slip BOR marker
    • Round 6: [Knit to marker, sm] repeat [ ] 14 more times, knit to BOR marker, slip BOR marker
    • Round 7: [K2tog, rm] repeat [ ] 14 more times, K2tog, slip BOR marker
    • Round 8: Knit to BOR marker, slip BOR marker 
    • Round 9: K2tog till BOR marker, remove the BOR marker (8 stitches remaining)
    • Break about 6 inches of the working yarn and thread it through a tapestry needle. Pass the tapestry needle with the working yarn into the remaining stitches, pull tight and secure yarn.

wistfulhat_topview

  • Weave in the ends and wash the hat.

~coffeeteaknits

The Comfy Hat Patterns

There are some knit stitch patterns that look just as good on the right side as they do on the wrong side. It is so with the twisted seed stitch knit pattern. So I knitted the Comfy Hats with this twisted seed stitch pattern, one with the right side on the outside and the other with the wrong side on the outside. The Lion Brand® Scarfie yarn is warm and comfortable making it the right hat to wear this time of the year. Both hats were knitted bottom up and in the round with a 1 x 1 rib knit stitch pattern folded cuff, a body with the twisted seed stitch pattern, and crown shaping. 

There are two patterns down below for the two hats. The patterns are mostly similar but with a few modifications. These patterns are only for an adult medium hat size. These hats have not been graded for different sizes but the pattern can be easily adapted to different sizes by increasing or decreasing the number of cast on stitches or by increasing or decreasing the number of the pattern repeats.

The Comfy Hat Patterns (text and images for personal use only)

Yarn: Lion Brand® Scarfie Yarn in the Cream/Silver colorway
Knitting Needles: US #7 and US #9 circular knitting needles
Gauge: 17 stitches and 26 rows = 4 inches in stockinette stitch before blocking and with US #7 knitting needles
Abbreviations:

  • K: Knit
  • P: Purl
  • RS: right side
  • WS: wrong side
  • P2tog: Purl two stitches together
  • K2tog: Knit two stitches together
  • K1B: knit below the stitch on the left hand needle 
  • pm: place marker
  • rm: remove marker
  • sm: slip marker
  • BOR marker: beginning of round marker
Comfy Hat Pattern 1Comfy Hat Pattern 2
With US #9 cast on 88 stitches using the cable cast on method, slip stitches on to US #7 circular knitting needles, place a BOR marker and join the round With US #9 cast on 88 stitches using the cable cast on method, slip stitches on to US #7 circular knitting needles, place a BOR marker and join the round
Folded Cuff (1 x 1 rib stitch):
Round 1: [K1, P1] till the BOR marker, slip marker

Repeat Round 1 twenty-four more times (about 4 inches in length)
Folded Cuff (1 x 1 rib stitch):
Round 1: [K1, P1] till the BOR marker, slip marker

Repeat Round 1 twenty-four more times (about 4 inches in length)
Body (Twisted Seed Stitch Pattern):
Setup Round: [purl 10, K1, pm] repeat this 7 more times till the BOR marker, slip the BOR marker

Round 1: [purl till 1 stitch before marker, K1, sm] repeat this 7 more times till the BOR marker, slip the BOR marker

Round 2: [K1, K1B till 1 stitch before marker, K1, sm] repeat this 7 more times till the BOR marker

Round 3: [purl till 1 stitch before marker, K1, sm] repeat this 7 more times till the BOR marker, slip the BOR marker

Round 4: [K1B, K1 till 1 stitch before marker, K1, sm] repeat this 7 more times till the BOR marker


Repeat Rounds 1 – 4 seven more times
Body (Twisted Seed Stitch Pattern):
Setup Round: [purl 11, pm] repeat this 7 more times till the BOR marker, slip the BOR marker

Round 1: [purl to marker, sm] repeat this 7 more times till the BOR marker, slip the BOR marker

Round 2: [K1, K1B till 1 stitch before marker, P1, sm] repeat this 7 more times till the BOR marker

Round 3: [purl to marker, sm] repeat this 7 more times till the BOR marker, slip the BOR marker

Round 4: [K1B, K1 till 1 stitch before marker, P1, sm] repeat this 7 more times till the BOR marker

Repeat Rounds 1 – 4 seven more times


Crown Shaping:
Round 1: [purl till 3 stitches before marker, P2tog, K1, sm] repeat this 7 more times, slip BOR marker

Round 2: [K1, K1B till 2 stitches before marker, K2, sm] repeat this 7 more times, slip BOR marker

Round 3: [purl till 3 stitches before marker, P2tog, K1, sm] repeat this 7 more times, slip BOR marker

Round 4: [K1B, K1 till 1 stitch before marker, K1, sm] repeat this 7 more times, slip BOR marker

Repeat Rounds 1 – 4 three more times


Round 17: [P2tog, K1, sm] repeat this seven more till BOR marker, slip BOR marker

Round 18: Knit all the stitches removing all markers till the BOR marker, slip the BOR marker

Round 19: K2tog till the BOR marker, remove BOR marker, break about 6 inches of the working yarn and thread it through a tapestry needle. Insert the tapestry needle with the working yarn into the remaining stitches, pull tight and secure yarn


Weave in the ends and wash hat.
Crown Shaping:
Round 1: [purl till 3 stitches before marker, P2tog, P1, sm] repeat this 7 more times, slip BOR marker

Round 2: [K1, K1B till 2 stitches before marker, K1, P1, sm] repeat this 7 more times, slip BOR marker

Round 3: [purl till 3 stitches before marker, P2tog, P1, sm] repeat this 7 more times, slip BOR marker

Round 4: [K1B, K1 till 1 stitch before marker, P1, sm] repeat this 7 more times, slip BOR marker

Repeat Rounds 1 – 4 three more times


Round 17: [P2tog, P1, sm] repeat this seven more till BOR marker, slip BOR marker

Round 18: [K1, P1 till marker, rm] repeat till the BOR marker, slip the BOR marker

Round 19: P2tog till the BOR marker, remove BOR marker, break about 6 inches of the working yarn and thread it through a tapestry needle. Insert the tapestry needle with the working yarn into the remaining stitches, pull tight and secure yarn

Turn the hat inside out, weave in the ends and wash hat.

Photography, a non knitting skill that is helpful to knitters

February Hat for the #WNHyearofhatsKAL2019
The pattern used was Fruju Hat by Deb Cunningham
Yarn: a merino bamboo fingering weight yarn by Taylored Fibers I bought few years back.

As a hobby knitter it takes me days and sometimes months to complete my  knitting projects and yet I spend very little time when it comes to taking good photographs of the knitted items. I think it’s important to spend the time to learn how to take good photographs of the knitted items to showcase them on blog sites, Ravelry or any other social media. Nowadays smartphones with good camera resolution can be used to improve photography skills. There are many resources and tips* available online on how to improve picture taking skills with a smartphone.

Here’s a general summary of some of the tips mentioned:

  • Clean the camera lens before taking any picture with a lens wipe or a microfiber cloth
  • Find a good location around the house, outside etc.
  • Lighting – as much as possible use indirect natural lighting
  • Focus camera on the item to be photographed
  • Take as many pictures to get the one that is good for posting
  • Be ready to spend quite a bit of time to get that one good photo.
  • Take time to edit photos using the photo editing tool on the phone

With lighting, location and other tips in mind I took several more pictures of the hat I knit this month for the hat knit – along. Here are the original and edited pictures of the ones I thought were the better ones.

Original Edited

I’ve learnt a few things about taking good picture taking but need to learn more including how to use the picture editing tools. The only downside to taking pictures with a smartphone is that you need to spend a bit more time removing all the pictures that didn’t turn out well!

How do you take photos of your knitted items?


* “Take better smartphone photos with these simple tips and tricks
* “How to Take Amazing Product Photos With a Smartphone

2019 and knitting hats

  • This year will be a year of knitting a hat (or two) a month,

I knit the Antler hat by Tin Can knits and added a pom pom. More details can be found on my Ravelry project page.

Hat made with two strands of sock yarn held together. More details can be found on my Ravelry project page.

  • a year to explore and learn more challenging stitch patterns,
  • and a year to continue knitting sweaters and blankets with the yarn I already have

Finished Sweaters:

Finally after two years this lingering Top down striped tunic is complete. It turned out to be different than what I had initially planned to knit. While I was not quite successful in helical striping (see more details on my Ravelry project page), I did learn how to crochet and sew the duplicate stitch. 

In the Top down moss stitch pullover, I knit a double brim collar after picking up the provisionally cast on stitches.


 

When a knitted hat is more than just another hat

Hat with Lion Brand® Yarn Heartland® yarn

Hat in Glacier Bay colorway

This hat was knitted to support Lion Brand’s #HatNotHate campaign to increase awareness of bullying and its impact on the community.


Knit-along by Hannah Wallace in Knit Simple Magazine, Holiday 2017 issue.
September 2018 squares: Stitch pattern for both squares are different from the knit-along pattern.
Yarn: Lion Brand® Vanna’s Choice®.
Project details on my Ravelry project page

Square 1 for September

Square 2 for September

 

A summer to complete some lingering knitting projects

For me summer knitting is mostly for cooler and rainy days. This summer I would like to finish those lingering knitting projects. I finished a seamless top which I had started almost a year ago. This top was going to be a long sleeved pullover using the yarn I already had but when I started knitting the sleeves with the variegated yarn the stripes were much wider than the body. I did not like this banding pattern on the sleeves so I decided to make it a short sleeved top. See more on the  project here.

Seamless Top

Another project to complete this summer is this top down tunic that I started almost two years ago.

Do you have any long lingering knitting projects that need to be completed?

Keep cool and happy knitting this summer!


Knit-along by Hannah Wallace in Knit Simple Magazine, Holiday 2017 issue

June 2018 square: Stitch pattern for the square is different from the knit-along pattern.

Square for June 2018

Yarn: Lion Brand® Vanna’s Choice®
Project details on my Ravelry project page

 

Is a designated craft area or room useful to a knitter?

For the most part, hand knitting and crocheting is portable and a designated craft area or room although not necessary for a beginning knitter certainly becomes more useful and essential as a knitter’s skill levels, projects, and yarn inventory increases. We try to keep our clothes, our mail, the cooking utensils etc. in designated areas so why not our yarn and knitting supplies?

With a designated craft area or room –

  • All the yarn is in one place so we know how much and what type of yarn we have.
  • Less time is wasted looking for a particular yarn stored in a different place.
  • The frequency of additional yarn purchase may decrease.
  • There is motivation to try more challenging knitting projects and to keep better project details and notes.
  • The non – knitters in the household will be thankful they don’t have to see yarn stored in different places.

There are several craft area/room tours by both professional and hobby knitters on YouTube that give some helpful tips on how to create a designated craft area or room. I’m still working on creating a designated craft area where I can keep all my yarn and knitting supplies.


My first top down hat

Finished Hat with pom pom

Yarn used: Lion Brand Heartland® in Isle Royale
Project details can be found on my Ravelry project page

All the hat patterns I’ve knitted so far (some earlier posts here and here) have been bottom up and seamless. The brim of the hat is knitted first, then the body and lastly the crown shaping. With top down hats the crown shaping is knitted first, then the body and lastly the brim.

After reading and watching several online tutorials on how to knit a top down seamless hat, I cast on 8 stitches and began knitting the hat using the magic loop method (tutorial by Tin Can knits).  I increased 8 stitches every other round till I had the number of stitches I needed. I knit the body of the hat in stockinette stitch pattern for several rounds and then knitted the brim using 2 x 2 ribbing pattern.

Once I got used to the magic loop method, knitting the hat with using a top down construction was not hard. I started and finished knitting this hat in December 2017 but found it a bit short without the brim rolled up.

Hat without pom pom

With a short brim

I frogged a few rounds of the brim and knitted till the length of the brim was twice as much as before. Now the hat fits much better.

Finished hat with longer brim

Hat with rolled up brim

It seems that enough brim length when rolled up makes the hat fit better even if the body of the hat is a bit short or a bit long. Because of the direction of the knitting, it is faster and easier to increase the brim length if needed in a top down hat than it is in a bottom up hat.


Knit-along by Hannah Wallace in Knit Simple Magazine, Holiday 2017 issue.
February 2018 square: Project details on my Ravelry project page

April 2018 square

A season to knit earwarmers

Earwarmer with Fair Isle Knitting

Yarn Used: Patons® Classic Wool Worsted in Burgundy and Grey? (not sure about this colorway since it was knitted from yarn I already had and no longer have the label for it)

Project Details: This pattern Fair Isle Headband by Jane Stringer is a free Ravelry download and really a good project to start knitting Fair Isle. This is a fourteen stitch and fifteen round repeat pattern that can be knitted within a week. Next time I will knit two extra rounds of ribbing since the ribbing was curling up before I blocked the earwarmer.

This is my first time knitting Fair Isle and I wanted a small project to practice it. I still need to work on carrying my floats in the back (missed one in the lower right section of the second image) and knitting without tangling the two strands of yarn. It was a straightforward project with no increases or decreases in the pattern and a great introduction to Fair Isle knitting.

A season to knit earwarmers

  • They are quick knits making them great holiday gifts.
  • Learn or practice new and more complex stitch patterns (eg. Fair Isle) before investing time on a bigger knitting project with that particular stitch pattern.
  • Can be knitted flat and then seamed or can be knitted seamless and in the round. The pattern is the same bottom up or top down.
  • One skein (200 yards) of yarn is enough to make 2 or more earwarmers. Great for using leftover yarn.
  • Can be knit with any type or weight of yarn.
  • Good for keeping your ears warm in the winter without messing up your hair.

Happy Knitting! 

The versatile craft of knitting

Fisherman’s Rib Hat with Pom Pom


Yarn Used: Manos Del Uruguay Maxima* in Mixed Berries colorway.
Project details: The hat was knit in the round using the Fisherman’s rib stitch pattern. This project requires some concentration and focus and is certainly not a project to knit while watching TV. It’s best to put lifelines (there’s a short tutorial on lifelines for brioche stitch by Fruity Knitting Podcast Episode 35) every now and then because fixing a mistake in this stitch pattern is quite frustrating and time-consuming. More project detail can be found on my Ravelry project page.

The versatile craft of knitting
The versatile craft of knitting can teach us many things besides the various stitch patterns and techniques. It can be therapeutic, reduce stress, and also sometimes teach us to be more mindful, kind, thankful and calm. And now, according to the article “Girls Knit Their Way to a Math Career“, knitting is being used to teach kids math and science concepts and also to ease their math learning anxiety.

In the past year or so my focus has been more on reducing my yarn stash and less on the benefits of knitting that initially drew me to this craft (read the reformatted entries of my previous blog named Coffee Tea or Knits). While too much yarn and too many WIP’s can be overwhelming and stressful, it’s heartening to know that knitting can teach us many positive things that are just as versatile as the craft.


*There’s an article in the Spring 2017 issue of Interweave Knits about Manos del Uruguay, a non-profit cooperative organization, and its social mission for the rural women in this country.