Monday, June 7, 2010

Graduation from Daymar Inst

What a great day! This past Saturday DiscoDame had her graduation ceremony.


Here's the Dad & Grad shot:

Sunday I finished the Baby/Toddler Monkey Hat. I'll have pics later. This little thing took some brain-burning to make: I had only a sketchy idea of what the lady wants, and the free patterns I found online all used sport/baby or DK weight yarns. I had nothing in the stash in the colors wanted, in sport/baby or DK--but I had it in chunky in the main color, and in worsted in the contrast color, and both were the same fiber blend. So I triple-stranded the contrast to match weights with the main, jiggered the maths for the size hat I wanted, and started the thing about four times. The earflaps aren't real big, but they're noticeable, even though they're knit in one piece with the rest of the hat. Here's what I came up with, pattern-wise:
Materials: Main color (MC) - about 1/2 skein Lion Brand Wool Ease Thick & Quick
Contrast color (CC) - about 1/2 skein Lion Brand Wool Ease (solid color)
Size US 13 circular, either extremely long for Magic Loop, or use two of them, or Sz 13 DPNs if you prefer. I used two circulars for the hat.
Size 11 US DPNs (two, for I-cord ties)
Tapestry needle, tape measure, stitch marker

For baby/toddler size, the total circumference needs to be no less than 12", and should probably stretch to about 13.5". Gauge - well, I never checked it exactly, but the Thick & Quick ballband calls for a US 15 and 9 stitches over 3" (I think, I'll check this before I post). I figured it would be a little bit smaller with the smaller needles, and that would also give me a nice firm fabric for this hat. Decide whether you want this as stockinette or garter, & work accordingly.
First earflap: In MC, cast on 3 sts. Turn, work even across. For the next rows, work RS rows with an increase near each end, and wrong side rows work even.
Next row (RS): K1, make 1, K1, make 1, K1. Next row (WS): Work even (5 sts).
Next row : K1, M1, K3, M1, K1. Next: Work even (7 sts). The contrast color edge will add width & length to the earflap, so cut the yarn (leave enough to weave in) & place these 7 sts on a holder or DPN.
Now, work the second earflap as for the first, but don't cut the yarn. Instead, use a backwards loop cast on for 11 stitches (work these as tightly as you can!) for the front of the hat. Making sure the right sides of both earflaps are outward, knit(purl) across the first flap. Again, backwards loop cast on 11 stitches (back of cap), join for in-the-round & place marker, and knit across the second earflap. Work even until piece is 2.5" above the earflaps. Next round, *K4, K2tog*, repeat to marker. Work even for 3 rounds/rows. Next: *K3, K2tog*, repeat to marker. Work even for 2 rounds. Next: *K2, K2tog*, repeat to marker. Work even 1 round. Next: *K1, K2tog*, repeat to marker. Next round: K2tog around; repeat until there are only 5 stitches left on the needles. Cut yarn, leaving a 6" tail. Thread yarn tail onto large tapestry needle, run through the remaining sts twice, remove circular needle & pull to close the top of the hat.
With US 13 & CC triple-stranded, pick up all stitches around bottom edge of cap. I did the MC in stockinette, so decided to work the trim in reverse stockinette; but I know lots of folks don't like to purl that much--try garter stitch. I made two rows even, then on the third row when I came to the middle 4-5 stitches of the earflaps, I worked short rows twice to extend the length of the earflap. Continue around to marker, then bind off. For the "ears" I just made a 2-chain crochet chain, worked 4 single crochet into the first chain (careful not to work over the tail end--the loop can be pulled tight later!). Slip st to 2nd chain st, work 1 sc same st, 2 sc in each st around, slip st & pass cut end of yarn thru loop. Repeat. I sewed the "ears" on just forward of the middle of the earflaps, about where the first row of decreases appears.
Now, find a willing victim/model, and LOL at the cute hat!

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