Thursday, October 25, 2007
Completed project: center square hat
Pattern: Center Square hat
Yarn: Cascade 220
I knit this Center Square Hat in just three hours! Ok, to be truthful, I spent an entire evening knitting the hat on size US11 needles all the way through the fair isle pattern only to try it on and discover it was slightly too big. And sure enough when I checked gauge mine was a few stitches/inch off. Gah! This is the first time I have ever had my gauge be larger than what is called for in the pattern. The next night I knit a second hat (the one pictured) on size 10.5 needles, got the right gauge, the hat fits nicely and only took three hours to knit. I think it went faster the second time because I had memorized the pattern :)
The hat fills two purposes: it matches the fleece jacket that I'll be wearing nearly every day until the temp gets below zero (Fahrenheit) and it was good fair isle practice for the anemoi mittens I hope to make. Previous fair isle attempts include a yellow hat with a Charlie Brown stripe which was woefully small due to my not leaving enough slack in the carried strands. The second (and only other) fair isle piece I've made was the felted skull and crossbones mini tote. Let's just say it's a good thing that project was felted, because the backside was not pretty.
So, this is my third and most successful attempt at fair isle. I think it's a great beginner fair isle pattern because you only have to carry yarn for at most 5 stitches before switching colors. I think frequent color changes help maintain a consistent (and adequate!) ease with the carried strands on the backside. I'm extremely happy with how this hat turned out! The first pic shows the part of the hat where the stripes jog. I tried to correct the jog with an assortment of jogless stripe methods, but none of them worked very well. Some of them even left a hole between where the jog would've been and the next stitch, or left a bumpy, extra big stitch where the jog would've been. I'll just take the jog, please.
It's still pretty warm here (see the thermometer at 55 degrees!) so I won't be wearing this hat for a while.