When I was in elementary school, my mother taught me how to knit and crochet. She’s a whiz at both, and when she was pregnant with me, she made blankets, sweaters, cardigans, scarves, and you name it…hehe, just not hats. She no longer knits or crochets – her vision’s really bad.
Unfortunately, I’ve completely forgotten how to crochet, but throughout the years, I keep going back to knitting. I’m more comfortable having 2 needles instead of just 1, but I suppose with more practice, I’d get used to it.
About 5 years ago, I bought a big set of bamboo circular needles on eBay. I don’t own a single crochet hook. (That’s about to change, though, because I saw cool YouTube tutorials on pom-pom scarves! I’ll link to it and other knitting and crocheting videos at the bottom of this post in case you want to try any.)
Knitting scarves is really relaxing and extremely easy to do. I’ve made a few basic scarves and one insane scarf made out of shiny, variegated monster-fur-type yarn.
This Christmas, I wanted to knit something for my boyfriend. Conveniently, he didn’t have a good winter hat, so I knew right away what to make.
However, I had my work cut out for me because I had never made a hat, let alone done any knitting in the round. (I always use circular needles, but all my projects up to this point had been K1, P1 basic, flat, rectangular scarves.)
So I looked up a free simple hat pattern online, referred to my Knitting for Dummies book, did research on YouTube when I got confused or made mistakes, and checked out knitting forums for tips.
In today’s Smorgasbord Sundays post, I’m going to show you the two types of wool I bought to make the hat for him and a scarf for myself. I’ll also share with you photos of my projects in progress. (The hat is pretty much completed, though. I just need to tie the end, and it’s good to go.)
One of my friends introduced me to a knitting store that has aisles and aisles of yarn everywhere. It was such an experience seeing a knitter’s paradise.
It was incredible seeing so many different colours, types of yarn, and even a wall full of needles. It made me feel like a kid in a candy store! So…obviously, I’ll be going back soon, especially since I want to make a pom-pom scarf.
Here’s the yarn I chose for the hat. I bought 3 balls of it, but I really only needed one. (With the extra 2 balls, I’m going to knit myself a thin circle scarf in moss stitch, probably.)
It’s Rowan Pure Wool DK – 50 grams/136 yards. Shade: 021 and Lot: 8148. It’s made in Romania.
Yes, it’s a geese-poop kind of green – my favourite colour for nail polish. Believe it or not, this is also my boyfriend’s favourite colour when it comes to his clothing! Two swampy-green peas in a pod.
When picking yarn, I made sure to choose 100% wool so that it’s warm and has natural elasticity. It’s super soft, and not itchy or scratchy at all.
Here’s what it looks like up close:
I had to use a US 6 (4 mm) circular needle for this knitting project. It’s the smallest needle I’ve ever worked with – most of my projects called for US 7 needles.
Check out the following progress photos!
This is what it started out looking like in the beginning:
Here, I’ve knitted the brim (shown unfolded) and just started working on the actual part above the brim:
The little blue ring you see on the left is a stitch marker. I had to keep track of the beginning of each round. As I completed each row, I moved the marker up.
A closer look at stitch markers:
I’m almost done the hat. I just need to thread the yarn through and tie it.
The hat isn’t actually as long as it looks. I didn’t pull the brim up as much as I could because I wanted to show off more of the hat instead of the brim. (Funnily enough, the brim was more challenging than the rest of it, even the increasing-stitch and decreasing-stitch rows! This was also the first project that I’ve ever had to increase or decrease stitches.)
Here’s a closer look at the part that’s all just knitting (no purling) for every single row:
In case any of you are curious, here’s a link to the free downloadable hat pattern I used. (I used smaller needles and yarn with a smaller gauge than what was recommended, though. It still turned out great!)
Now, I mentioned that I’m also working on a scarf, but for myself. In the store, I didn’t have any colours in mind. I wanted to just see some yarn and then be inspired to use it.
This is the skein that inspired me.
I just love how chunky it is! It’s called “Misti Alpaca Qolla Chunky” and is 20% Baby Alpaca and 80% Merino Wool (Colour: QC06 Frida and Lot: 18084 – 100 grams/109 yards). It’s made in Peru.
I like how there’s green, brown, burgundy, mauve, cream, and other colours.
I just had to show you what it looks like even closer up!
The little white ‘hairs’ are part of the yarn. It made the scarf look fluffy and soft.
As promised, here are links to some great knitting and crocheting resources:
- Ravelry.com- I was going to sign up as “SwatchAndLearn”, but the username was already taken!
- The Crochet Crowd‘s YouTube channel (Crocheting and Knitting)
As mentioned, I also bought the Knitting for Dummies book to help me out. You can find it online and at many bookstores.
So…do you knit or crochet? If so, what are some things that you’ve made? If not, what would you want to make if you learned?