Wednesday, 10 October 2012

I Knitted A Hat!

But first things first, thanks for all your very kind comments on my last post, and hello to new followers and commenters, it's lovely to meet you! The Christmas cake...let me explain. My Dad and I have for some years now had a little tradition where he and I make my Christmas cake together (this being his sole Christmas Cooking Duty and so of course he is an expert). Since my parents live 250 miles away we have to grab the baking opportunities when we can, and so we made it at the weekend. Actually, we started it together then Dad went out for a ride on John's bike and left me to it, so maybe I have passed some kind of test.

I am not one of those scary, organised people who declares that all their Christmas shopping is done by the end of October, making the rest of us feel inadequate. But I do love Christmas and, for me, the planning and list writing and making and shopping and wrapping and baking, the whole build up, is where the joy lies. So yes I have made my cake, there is one less job to do in December. And I always buy my Christmas pudding.

Anyway, the hat. It's not for Bella, it is for me, but she is a much prettier model.


Yes indeedy, it is true, I actually knitted a thing that was not a blanket or scarf or cushion!! I made a hat shaped piece of fabric (I decreased stitches!) and I knitted the very attractive stocking stitch (I purled!) and then I sewed it up and ta-da! a hat was made (I followed a pattern!!). This is big deal for me, and I am happy. I feel as though I have overcome a knitting mental block and I feel much more confident about the other knitting possibilities there are out there.

I used the pattern, needles and yarn we were given on the knitting course I attended at Baa Ram Ewe in Leeds a couple of weeks ago. It's a simple unisex hat with a garter stitch border and stocking stitch main section, knitted on UK size 10 needles with chunky Freedom Wool. It knits up really quickly, I made it in an evening, and while I didn't like working with the yarn (too fluffy) it does make a rather cosy hat.


However, I did find the hat a little plain, a little dull, with it's football stripes and lack of detailing, so I put my thinking cap on and made a felt flower.


But this was no good. The flower was too big, too childish. I looked like a cross between Robin Hood and a flapper from the 1920's. John took one look at it and just said "No". I was cross with him at first (I mean, after nine years of marriage, you need to learn when to lie) but he does have an pretty good eye for all things clothes related so I gave it some more thought.


And then I plucked up the courage to overcome another crafting mental block and I crocheted a flower. I used the May Rose pattern from the Attic24 blog. The step by step tutorial was so good, I understand now why so many people use her blog for patterns and advice, it really is brilliant.


Yes, I am aware that it is an easy flower, but up until this point I have only made granny squares, and I still find crocheting into a stitch tricky, but it is getting easier.


I am so pleased with the flower, and the hat, and the pink, green and cream colour combination and, well, all of it really. I have been wearing it every day and I've been very glad of it as the last few days have been really cold.


Have you ever overcome a crafty hurdle and found a world of possibilites opened itself up to you?

35 comments:

Hazel said...

Oh my gosh I love the felt flower! Not that the other little crochet one isn't cute... maybe I'm based toward anything felt and flowery but I think it's super cute! :)

The hat is fabulous too... now you have mad "hat knitting skills" you can do a tea cosy! That's how my Mom taught me :)

Jen Walshaw said...

I am so envious. I have been on both a knitting and crochet course and I still can not do it. I am all fingers and thumbs. I will keep trying, but this is beautiful. Well done you!

Morten and Me said...

Beautiful, you can wear the felt flower on your coat as its too nice not to show it off :)

Rachel said...

Fabulous. I have knitting envy - you have mastered it super quick.

Sue said...

What fab colours and i love the crochet flower,Clever you,
Best Wishes Gillian
Sue xxx

...Tabiboo... said...

It's beautiful - lovely and chunky and the colours are perfect. I think you were right to downsize the flower - it sets it off wonderfully.

Nina x

Vintage Sheet Addict said...

It's great, very cosy! We've just had our first frost, so good timing! Ada :)

Anna @ green tea n toast said...

Gorgeous - I love it. Great colours and the perfect amount of pink. x

andamento said...

Very nice! Well done.

Thomasina Tittlemouse said...

Your hat is delightful! Well done you! I too love the felt flower but the crochet rose is beautifully understated so possibly makes the hat more wearable on all occasions. A thought: you could interchange the two if the flower is not sewn on but secured to a brooch type pin or just a safety pin. I think it looks gorgeous anyway! And well done twice for branching out in a new direction - always so satisfying. Enjoy wearing it - if you can get it back off Bella that is! If I were her I would be clamouring for one of my own...! E x

June said...

What a great make! I love the crochet flower - the pink sits beautifully against the green and white. Well done you!
June

Karen said...

Are there no ends to your talents? Love the hat, am thinking of making one myself...thanks for a bit of inspiration. Lucy at Attic 24 is great, I find her so easy to follow. Xxx

Charmaine said...

Well done with your hat. I generally make oblong-shaped things and most of the time I don't even finish them! That explains the cake then, what a nice ritual to have x

galant said...

That is soooo pretty! Well done, you!
Margaret P

galant said...

BTW, have you noticed that there's an afternoon prog this week, on BBC2, with Paul Martin (usually on Flog It!) to do with crafts? Of course, for mums with school age children, who are collecting the little darlings at that time of day, this mightn't be possible to watch unless on iplayer. today it showed one woman who made beaded brooches (quite nice but I can't see myself wearing one), another made hats from felt (again, quite nice, if that isn't damining with faint praise!), one woman was a glass blower, another was a blacksmith (striking a hot iron for feminism, har, har!) and another chap created stone sculptures (I liked those best had I to choose from the various crafts being shown). But it made a change from Flog It, Bargain Hunt, Cash in the Attic, et al!
Margaret P

Ellie Foster said...

Dear Gillian
Well done! It is a lovely hat and you should be very proud of your achievement. I keep saying I'll learn to knit/crochet/make patchwork... but somehow, I get distracted and am still no further forward with any of them. I think your hat will get a lot of wear over the autumn and winter, so pretty and practical - what could be better?
Best wishes
Ellie

Anna @ Miss Beatrix said...

You seem to be a step above me in the knitting stakes and I applaud you for it! I really need to stop knitting scarves and make something where stitches actually increase and decrease... Anyway, the hat turned out beautifully and I like the colours and flower too!

Anna. x

Suzie @the view from here said...

Lord that's one impressive hat and flower combo. You are very talented. I think it would have taken me one whole evening to unravel the wool, let alone knit the hat, make a felt flower and crochet an alternative!

emma said...

My, that's a beautiful hat - you should feel very pleased with yourself especially as it is now woolly hat season! x

bee @ thelinencloud said...

Very pretty hat and two very pretty flowers ... I love making things with felt and do love to make flowers ... definitely use this one as a brooch ... too, too pretty to discard ... Bee xx

Julia said...

It's just lovely! I love the color combination and it looks so warm and cozy...perfect for a Fall day! Great job!!

Greer said...

See, now you're a knitter. Welcome x

Cheryl said...

What a pretty hat, love the colours, and the wee rose sets it off just lovely. x

Jo said...

Brilliant. There'll be no stopping you now you've got your decreases sorted out. What will be next on the needles I wonder.

A Normandy kitchen said...

Hi Gillian,
I think it's wonderful to have such a tradition to make the Christmas cake with your Dad, it will certainly taste better making it now. Well done on the hat (my grandmother and mother, were an amazing knitters and crocheters!).
Ivan

Annie @ knitsofacto said...

LoVe It! I really do. And I bet John didn't say no to the final version, it's gorgeous. I love the way you find the confidence to just tackle these things and go way outside your comfort zone :D

Caroline said...

Well done, It's brilliant! I love the little crochet flower, it finishes it off perfectly. xx

Col | Hello Olive said...

It looks great, well done! You're right, it is a great colour combo! x

Andrea said...

Clever clever girl! I am off to a crochet workshop this morning wirh the lovely Heike jorgensen of gooseflesh. Should be fun. As to knitting or doing anything from a pattern...yikes. I somehow think that won't happen for a while for me. Lovely hat, and the rose looks perfect.

Jelly Jam said...

Great - love that shade of green!
I hope you don't mind but I've just 'tagged' you on my blog. If you don't want to play I wont be offended. I've never bothered before but it's been such a dismal day here!
Ellie
x

bee @ thelinencloud said...

Hi Gillian ... I hope you don't mind but I've given you a mention on my blog ... it is a tag thing but if you don't want to play don't worry, it's the first time I've been tagged and it is time consuming ... I won't be in the least offended if you don't want to ... Bee xx

PS the post is called eleven

Pomona said...

Every time I have knitted a hat for myself I end up looking like an old lady in a tea cosy. I have given up on that one and stick to socks now.

Pomona x

Colette said...

Gorgeous hat, I love those colours. Well done on the flower -it looks perfect! x

Jenny said...

Darling hat Gillian!

trishie said...

That hat is just gorgeous! I definitely prefer the small little flower.