Tag Archives: hats

Patterns: Hats!

Guys!  I’ve got two (count ’em, two!) new patterns in Knit Picks’ new pattern book, On the Go Knits.  It’s a collection of projects perfect for running/hiking/working in the garden.  Everything is worked in high-contrast colors of machine-washable yarn.  This book is full of some really pretty (and practical) patterns, and I know I’ll be knitting up a few of them.330141The best part? I’ve got two hats in this collection!

The Collapsible Cap is a super comfy beanie, worked with wide ribbing all the way up to the crown.  It’s worked in super-soft Swish Worsted, which might be my favorite kind of yarn for hats.  And, because of all the ribbing, it fits just about anyone.  And, when you take it off it collapses in on itself, making it perfect for stashing in your pocket when it gets too warm. (My husband and I fight over the Collapsible Cap I made him.  It’s really great.)330141011My other pattern is one I’m really proud of-  It’s the Pocket Hat.  (OK, I didn’t do a great job naming this one, but the hat itself is great.)

From the outside, the hat is a cute two-tone cap knit in sock-weight yarn with a wide ribbed band and a little section of color work around the middle.  Cute, right?330141031But, look inside, and you’ll find a secret pocket!  Fastened with a button, it’s the perfect hiding spot for a few bucks (so you can stop by the coffee shop on your way back from your run), your drivers license (just in case), or your a key (so you can get back into your house).330141041I’m so happy with these patterns, and I know you will be, too!

Want to win a copy of On the Go Knits? Comment below with the activity you’d do while wearing something from this collection!  Would you go running with the In Motion Vest?  Take a hike with the Arrow Gloves?  Practice yoga with the Yogini Socks?  Inquiring minds need to know!

(Also- More exciting news is on its way!  So come back on Monday!)

Inspiration: Charity Knitting

Congratulations!  You made it through Christmas!  You’re probably heading out to buy batteries for your kids’ Christmas presents and nursing a hangover from too many sugar cookies.

(Also, it’s my mom’s birthday!  Happy Birthday, Mom!)

But the day after ftsChristmas is not just a day for regretting that fifth cup of eggnog.  It’s Boxing Day!  We don’t really celebrate Boxing Day in America, but I learned about it when we lived in the UK as a kid.  Boxing Day is the day after Christmas, and was the day when the wealthy folks (think Lord and Lady Crawley) gave gifts to their servants and the other poor folks in their town.

Sure, it sounds patronizing when you put it that way, but it’s a good idea.  If Christmas is all about getting gifts, then Boxing Day is all about giving.

And, since you’ve all finished your Christmas knitting, you’ve got plenty of time for some Boxing Day charity knitting?

These beautiful (and simple) little hats would be perfect to drop off at a hospital for preemies (and their mothers).  Just be sure to check your local hospital’s regulations before you start knitting.

Preemie Hats for Charity by Carissa Browning

870859826_2e671d29fd_z[1]Up for something a little more challenging?  Think about contributing to the Mother Bear Project.  These darling little teddy bears are sent to kids around the world whose lives have been affected by HIV and AIDS.  (And the bear pattern is pretty cute, too.)

Mother Bear Project Teddy Bear by Amy Berman

Mother_Bear_in_Liberia_1_medium2[1]Maybe you want to do something a little different?  Think about knitting a prosthetic breast or two and dropping them off at your local hospital (or local knitting shop… my LYS is having a breast drive right now, which is pretty cool).  These prostheses are lighter and more comfortable on healing skin than the medical-grade ones, and don’t require complicated undergarments to stay in place.  And they can come in cashmere, which is pretty cool.

408379437_68c70c53f4_z[1]Do you do any charity knitting?  What groups do you give to?

Inspiration: RuPaul’s Drag Race

One of my favorite TV shows (and the only reality show I bother watching) has started up again!  And it’s more fabulous, fiercer and shadier than ever.  It’s RuPaul’s Drag Race Season 6!  (It’s on Logo, but the full episodes are all available online, so you have zero excuse for not watching it.)

RuPauls-Drag-Race-Season-6-Premiere-Date-Announced[1]It’s American Idol, but for Drag Queens.  And It. Is. Amazing.  The queens are all gorgeous, talented and feisty, and the show (like a good drag queen) knows exactly what it is and embraces itself wholeheartedly.  It’s campy, yet earnest.  It’s all about being exactly who you want to be and expressing yourself to the best of your ability.  It makes you care about the contestants, and it always leaves me inspired.

The contestants constantly blow my mind with their range of talents.  They have to be seamstresses, costumers, makeup artists, hairstylists, actors, performance artists, comediennes, dancers, and singers.  And have to be tough and sassy on top of everything.  rpdrseason6header[1]

And,  if that wasn’t enough, they have some fantastic wigs.  These knit and crochet ones aren’t nearly as fabulous as a top of the line lace-front wig, but they cost a heck of a lot less, and are totally within the DIY-esthetic of drag.

Space-Princess Fabulous

Leia Wig by Ansley Bleu

233236040_febbb97cb0_z[1]Disney Princess Realness

Princess Merida Costume Wig by Funky Polkadot Giraffe

merida_wig_01_medium2[1]Giving Halloween Face

Hallowig by Megan Reardon

508054613_6d01a4ff5f_z[1]And in the words of Ru herself, “If you don’t love yourself, how the hell you gonna love someone else?  Can I get an Amen?”

A Super Exciting Post About Yardage and Budgets

Yarn does not grow on trees (if only… that would be amazing.  Scientists: get on that).    And there are only so many hours in the day.  It’s still relatively early in December, but you are probably starting to feel the pinch.  Obviously, knitting big projects takes more time than knitting little projects (because… duh), so banging out a sweater in two weeks (while that would be amazing) is probably not going to happen.

When I want to make someone a knitted gift, my usual go-tos are knitted accessories: hats, mittens/gloves, and scarves.  Accessories are always useful, appreciated, don’t usually need to be washed (and potentially ruined), and are small enough that you can finish a project in the time it takes to watch a Sunday marathon of Law & Order.

I’ve undertaken a semi-scientific* study of some of the knitted accessories I have sitting in a box in my closet.  I wanted to see about how much yarn I used in each project, but I didn’t want to unravel everything and measure it out (because I’m not a masochist).  Instead, I broke out the kitchen scale and weighed each item, which will let me estimate of how much yarn each type of project requires.


After much data collection and number crunching**, here’s what I found out:

A hat uses approximately the same amount of yarn as a pair of mittens. ***

A scarf uses about 2 to 3 times as much yarn as a hat or a pair of mittens.

So, if you’re trying to save money, time, and yarn, try making a gift hat.  If you’re feeling generous, how about a nice long scarf?

*Not at all scientific.

**I measured three of each item all knit with worsted-ish yarn (three pairs of mittens, three scarves, three hats) and averaged the weights.

***Note: my mittens were knit at a slightly finer gauge than my hats and scarves.  So while they may weighed the same, the mittens used more yardage, and probably took more time to knit up.