Tuesday, 8 July 2014

ALL the hats!

I have a lot of works-in-progress going at the moment.  I think at the last count there were 3 or 4 sweaters, and they're all at points that need focused concentration (seaming or math calculation or general tidying up).  The problem is, at the moment, I have no extra concentration to focus at them.  I have a bunch of things on at the moment, and while I would like to have all these extra sweaters off the needles and on my body, it also is summer, and rather warm here.  Not hot yet, but warm enough to make sweaters utterly redundant.

So I'm making hats.

I was sick of looking at my stash and wondering what to knit that would be easy and also pairing up the yarn.  So what I did was I got a tote bag and shoved a bunch of single balls of DK/light worsted yarn into it.  No thinking about it - if it would knit up to 22-24 sts to 4 inches, in the bag it went.

(yes, that is another pair of needles with a WIP on them in there!)

Then I went on Ravelry and did a pattern search for free hat patterns that would knit up to that gauge.  I downloaded a bunch of them - again without thinking too hard.  If I liked it, I downloaded the pdf.  And I stuck them in a folder on my tablet.

So now I have a bunch of patterns, and a bunch of balls of yarn :)  And if I feel like casting something new on, I pick one of those patterns and one of those balls of yarn, and get going.  I'm not thinking too hard about it.  I'm not focusing on the usual "is this the perfect use for this yarn?" thoughts that I get.  I just pick up some yarn and needles, and knit.

It's difficult not to focus on those thoughts, even when I'm halfway through a hat.  But I'm learning to ignore them.  There will always be other yarn that I can find the "perfect" use for.  And if this pattern is not the "perfect" use for this yarn, at least it's a use for it.  The yarn is not just sitting there on my shelf puzzling me with what to do with it.  It's getting used.  And if I don't like the resulting hat that much - well, I live in a climate that gets cold at winter.  I know lots of people who's heads will get cold and could use a hat :)  Also - xmas.  Just sayin'.

So I've finished one already:

Pattern: Cable Rouge by Marisa Hernandez: http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/cable-rouge
Yarn: Stylecraft Life DK: http://www.ravelry.com/yarns/library/stylecraft-life-dk
My Ravelry project page: http://www.ravelry.com/projects/yarndancer/cable-rouge

I like it a lot :) The pattern goes really well with the forest green of the yarn.  I had to add extra stitches to make it fit my giant head, but I have to do that with most hat patterns.  I just have a big head :)  I also had to block it a lot to make it as slouchy as I like - next time I'd probably knit an extra repeat before decreasing for the crown.

And I have started another hat:

Pattern: Lily of the Valley Hat by EAU Salang: http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/lily-of-the-valley-hat
Yarn: Stylecraft Life DK: http://www.ravelry.com/yarns/library/stylecraft-life-dk
My Ravelry project page: http://www.ravelry.com/projects/yarndancer/lily-of-the-valley-hat

I'm liking this method of choosing quick projects.  I get very bogged down in the combination of pattern and yarn and this "grab-bag" method is really taking a lot of the thinking out of the process, which is really good for me.  And it means projects are getting started AND finished!! :D

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