Friday 2 December 2016

Top Down Inside Out hats

It's December and it's trying to be winter here but one day winter, one day fall (rain) isn't really doing it. The odd day of snow is still getting me in the holiday mood. I'm coming down to the end of my Christmas knitting. Wow. Just a couple of things left on my list. Pat, pat, pat on my back.

I finished an experimental hat. It's black
 so of course, it's not so great to photograph but I'm really happy with it. This started with a photo of a hat from Pinterest that my daughter sent me saying "I want this, I want this". So here I am doing the mom thing. I looked all over Ravelry and couldn't find a pattern exactly like it. So I bought some yarn from the odd ball bin at a yarn store and started. I hadn't used this yarn before and I was changing the needle size and I didn't want to do a swatch first (shhh, did I say that out loud?!) so I started at the top.
I cast on 8 sts, so awkward at first but once I had about 24 sts on my needles I was good to go. I did check my gauge once I had some fabric and then went to the Need A Hat bible book to find the number of stitches I needed for my gauge. Good thing I have a copy or two around.

The only difficulty with knitting from the top is the cast off. I'm a really, really tight caster offer. A tight line at the brim is soooo not nice. I also wanted that "store bought" look where the ribbing appears to go around the edge. I trolled around the internet and found a sewn-off tubular bind off. It's a Kitchener Stitch variation so if you don't mind Kitchener stitch this might work for you too. It's a bit of a pain to begin with because you need to have 6 times the width of the cast off amount of yarn on your sewing up needle (that's 6 x 22" hat, that's a lot of yarn). Pulling the yarn through each stitch at the beginning made me wonder if this was worth it but it totally was. I love it. It's stretchy and has the proper look I wanted. I will definitely do this again.
 Experiment was successful and is in the Christmas present pile. Now to the real deal. This hat is in fingering weight. I love a light weight hat. This is the fun part, I'm knitting it inside out.
 This is the correct "look" of the hat. B who wants to do all that purling? Inside out means more knits than purls and is working perfectly.
Now it's my carry around project , The pattern is set and now I know I have a great cast off that will work when I get to the slouch hat length. Makes me a little giddy.

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