Before Christmas, my sister requested a plain black golf hat with a pompom for a friend of hers. It had to be black and be warm over the ears. It had to have a good-sized pompom, but most of all, it most definitely should not be a beanie (but not slouchy either). The recipient had been searching in vain for the right hat for a couple of years and had drawn a blank...
No pressure then! It was practically the perfect storm of things a knitter doesn't want to hear - black is horrible to knit in the winter, the recipient knew exactly what they wanted, but no pattern was suggested and as my sister wanted to surprise the recipient, no measurements or opinions on patterns were available!
I found the Astronomer pattern and suggested knitting it plain without the stripes, but my sister decided that actually, her friend quite liked stripes but I could choose the colour.
I ended up knitting two of these as the first was too large. I made the second one smaller by removing one repeat (9 stitches) and some length. The black yarn is Drops Nepal and the colours are Drops Big Merino all knitted on 5mm needles. The Resident Radiologist happily wore the big one all winter and I've never heard how my sister's friend is getting on with his...
After Christmas I went to the p/hop yarn swap at The Yarn Cake in Glasgow and picked up an absolutely beautiful skein of 4ply BFL yarn from Ripples Crafts. The colourway was the wonderfully named 'Ancient Hill Tartan'.
I wasn't sure what to knit with this until I realised that I really needed an easy to pull-on-and-wear hat too. I've got several lovely berets, but these always need 'arranging' to look right and with two small kids, I rarely have time for 'arranging'.
A while ago, I knitted three Sock Yarn Hats for my daughter and the sons of a friend. It occurred to me that this would work just as well for me and the pattern went right up to adult sizes.
I knitted it on 3mm needles. The turned brim is lovely and warm over my ears and it's the perfect pull-on-and-wear hat. I'm not sure that it showcases the colours in the yarn as well as it could, but it might well be one of those yarns where the colours are always going to look better in the skein than knitted up.
I've just realised that these photos don't showcase the colours particularly well either - winter light in Glasgow isn't great for photography. There's a lovely deep plum, a burnt orange and an olive green.