Knitting with my beloved Felted Tweed is time well spent indeed. Any respectable inventory of this fair yarn's qualities would have to include mention of the unbelievable array of colors from which to choose, the springy-sproinginess of its hand, and of course, the felt-in-your-hand workability of it. If it were a sailboat, Katharine Hepburn would certainly describe it like this:
Yar. Yes indeed.
Pattern: Striped Beanie by Martin Storey
Yarn: Felted Tweed: 'Rage', 'Avocado' and 'Treacle', bits and bobs of the first two, about a third of a skein of the latter.
Needles: size 3 and 5
Mods: So many that they are included in several paragraphs below. A departure! Usually I'm a go-with-the-flow-it's-all-good type of knitter, but there were many ways to make this pattern work better.
First off, knitting this hat in the round was absolutely essential. Back and forth and then seaming this mother up? Martin, please. So not happening around this joint. Doing it in the round just made much better sense to me and made for an all-around pleasant knitting experience, which is how I like my hobbies.
My next modification involved the jogless seam technique à la Brooklyn Tweed's Turn-a-Square, which if we're going to get real for a moment, should be acknowledged as the all-time most clever way to ever deal with the Stripe Problem. No jog. Problem fixed. Next.
Since we are cannibalizing BT's Turn-a-Square, we might as well also borrow with super awesome crown decreases, because let's face it, they just work. Please note: I am not the first person on Ravelry to come up with these ideas by any means, many other more intrepid knitters then me have done them to great effect. Just go and check the gallery and you will see the magic all in one place.
A word about the book in which this pattern is published: Knitting for Him: 27 Classic Patterns to Keep Him Warm. Now, given the title, it could have easily been one of those odious books that trots out the tired clichés about fickle men and the needy women that risk relationship stability by knitting them sweaters. But I am very relieved to say that but it isn't. It doesn't press any of my major gender buttons and that's a good thing! The projects are super-stylish and worn by semi-hot English fly fishermen and country gents. At least in my fantasy they are...
Well friends, I have ridden this hat wave just about as far as she'll take me. I might have one or two in the pipeline for 2010-2011, but we are gradually transitioning over to something more seasonally appropriate: shawls. Stay tuned!