Christmas gifts in progress

Yeah, they’re coming along. I’ve not actually got photos of gift #3 but it’s an orange, yellow and white beret. I’m worried it’s going to be too small. It’s a good fit on me, but I have a small head, I’m going to be careful who I give it to. I’ve knitted it. I’ve just got millions of ends to sew in.

I really imagine wearing this into my next appointment with my psychologist. I know I should.

Otherwise gift #6 is much better. Yup, I’m doing another dead fish hat. I’ve been looking for an excuse, so I used this as one! I’m using more Phildar Charly, it’s cheap, and I got this hat out of 50g in total. I’m going to sew to Xs on for eyes in orange, that’s why I chose such a contrast. I’m hoping the person I’ve made it for will like it, I’m 90% sure he’ll laugh at least. I just need to sew the ends in, neaten up the tail and do the eyes.

You can see the notes for this hat here and for my first dead fish hat here.

I’ve also started the next gift, but I’ve made a mistake so I’m going to have to knit a flower to cover that error up. Oh dear. Next time I won’t increase during a class.

Christmas 2014 Gift #5 DONE!

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A new lace beret, in neon pink!

So the last doily I made into a hat worked out as awesome. I love it and I’m tempted to keep it or make myself another one. I’m still trying to tackle these Christmas presents so I thought I’d grab another doily and make it into a hat, but I’m less keen on this one. It’s okay. I’m not going to bother sharing the pattern because I really am not awed by this, but if you like the doily I’ll give you a link to that here.

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I still have my GIANT spot from my last post, it’s been there for almost a week… but even from the front you can see this hat is less pretty that the other one. It’s not as long as I’d have liked either, but I ran out of yarn. It’s done in a mystery acrylic (probably Robin) that I took from my mum’s stash. I had about half a ball and used all of it, working the pattern linked above on 4mm needles. Lace isn’t too bad on a large scale, the thought of doing it on anything smaller than a 2.5mm needle does scare me a bit though. I do like these lace top beret hats though, and I’m hoping to do maybe another one for Christmas, but they’re pretty tiring, as the computer is the pattern source I can’t knit them while out, and with so many stitches it’s a bit difficult to take out in my bag.

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I also got the yarn to finish gift #3! Yay!

So this hat took three days, I got the lace done within 24 hours, but spent two days working the body. Part of me loves the colour but part of me finds it stupid on such a lacy pattern and on an adult. I think these hats would look better in more autumn like colours, browns, yellows, deep greens, greys. But that’s for later on. For now I’m doing these out of odd or cheap yarn.

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As you can see, the lace pattern is more open in the centre, but more closed throughout. It clearly forms and eight petal flower.

I don’t actually have a lot to say about this hat. I’m not attached, I’m just hoping the person I give it too will like it.

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Christmas 2014 Gift #4

Christmas hat #4. Probably the most beautiful thing I have ever made. Maybe even better than my Heliopath vest.

This may not look like much, and it may have been made in a cheap acrylic yarn, but it is so amazing. I used Robin Acrylic, which you can get for around £1.50 a 100g ball if you’re lucky. However now I know that this pattern works, and I completely improvised it. I think after Christmas I may make another one for myself in a cotton based yarn. But we’ll see.

And yes, I know I’ve jumped straight from gift #2 to gift #4. #3 is currently being knitted, but I got carried away.

A while back I got a bit obsessed with doilies. You know, like your grandma will have. Or my mum had in disposable paper. I added about two pages to my Ravelry queue. And I have a friend who has an afro, so her hats need to be pretty big, doilies can get big on 2mm needles, so if I do the same thing on 4mm needles, I’m really onto something here!

And then I had insomnia. It happens sometimes, something bugs me and I can’t sleep. I was looking through my queue thinking that I’d get the third hat finished that night when I stumbled across this pattern, that was the one I wanted to make. So without questioning (I’d come downstairs with a bag full of wool in case I wanted to start a new thing or finished the current one) I cast on. I got to round 25, I messed up. I ripped back, I cast on, I started again. Two days later it was finished.

A better view of the lace

My instructions and project notes can be found here, but I’ll also include them in this post for those of you without Ravelry. The pattern is published online at this blog, you don’t need to log in and it’s free.

So I just cast on 8 stitches and went for it, although there is a fancy crochet cast on there. I then worked the doily on 9dpns. (yup…) until round 54. You could stop anywhere listed though for a shorter hat. I put the work onto a 3.5mm circular needle and just knitted in stocking stitch for 6cm. If you want a slouchier hat this is where you add the length. For one round I did knit one knit two together, putting the count from 180 stitches down to 120. I then did 3-4cm of knit one purl one rib, and finished with 5 rounds of stocking stitch to give it a rolled edge before casting off with a super stretchy cast off. Simple once you’ve done the doily.

And from the front. This is such a beautiful photo, apart from the spot. Damn hormones.

Yes, I would make this again, but not in the acrylic yarn, cotton, wool, anything of high quality with a good stitch definition. I’d even be tempted to try it in sock wool. It is so pretty! It’s had a few compliments while in progress. The best one being “How the hell are you doing that?!” as well as the typical pretty ones.

Making a doily into a hat is challenging, but at the end of the day all knitting comes down to mathematics, and that does make it much easier to think like that. Yes, I am crazy.

This was actually very quick to finish, even though it was too big to put in my handbag, I think the attractiveness of it really boosted me on.

I mean, look, if you were knitting this would you be able to stop yourself?

Yeah, towards the end with 180 stitches it was more difficult, but to begin with it grew so quickly, and I think that’s what pushed me to do it so much. And when it was transportable on the circular needles most of the work was already done. I just had a few more cm to do. Although I got a couple of weird looks in the train, but nobody really knits in France.

Christmas Gift 2014 #2 DONE!

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No makeup, very weird looking Andi with her second present made up for Christmas!

So I’ve finished the second gift, I’m now onto the third and forth, at the same time… I just did a basic beanie, in black and red acrylic Phildar Charly left overs. I’ve got a roomie who is constantly asking me to give it to her, and asking for one identical. I do love how the colours and this work together with the fair isle pattern. And sadly this hat really suits me, so it’s going to be hard to give it away. I keep telling myself I’ll make another one after Christmas.

You can find my Ravelry notes here, I have changed a couple of things in the pattern. But it’s nearly the same. I just added a couple of rows of contrast before the fair isle pattern, left off the pompom, I should add it though, and did the rib in contrast. This was much more simple than my first Christmas present. More normal too.

The pattern is also avalible for free here if you’re looking for Christmas gifts to make. Happy knitting everyone.

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Just laid flat, looks good though.

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Oh yeah this so suits me. Although I’m not 100% keen on the fit, not sure why.

Christmas Gift 2014 #1 DONE!

How many hats is that? Five?!

Everyone who has seen my knitting this has asked “Andi, what the fack are you playing at there?!” So, as you can imagine, they stopped asking in the end. I pretty much improvised the short rows, as the pattern was on my tablet and I’m scared of taking it out in the metro, so because I did 90% of this in public it’s a blob of improvisation, but I love how it came out. I would recommend this pattern to anyone who loves knitting and has been asked how many hats they’ve knitted. And also for people who want to gloat that they can knit several hats. I’ve been affectionately calling this “I heard you like hats so I made you a hat full of hats” and you can see my Ravelry notes here, although I do need to update these on the project page. I also did another blog post on this a couple of days back.

The pattern is from the unofficial Harry Potter knitting book, and you can find the info about it here on Ravelry. Overall it too a while for me to get it, and some of the joins are a little fiddely, but this is a great stash busting project and I’d recommend it.

I used odds and sods of Phildar Charly. Great yarn, fairly cheap if you’re in France. Otherwise, don’t bother too much.

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Why so many hats?

Although this is for someone else I couldn’t resist trying it on and parading around the place I live with it. The looks the other women gave me! And someone asked me if it was really cold enough to wear multiple hats, so it had the desired effect.

I did block it too, and I never block anything! Actually, this is the only thing I’ve steam blocked, so that was interesting. First time I’ve used an iron too. “MUUUUMMMMMMMM?! Can you iron my…. oh, right, you’re in England… Hm” I just pressed a button and steam bellowed out, it wasn’t too hard. I also used a towel folded twice over it to give it a good folded edge on the yellow hat.

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So many ends, but so worth it.

I’m a nightmare when it comes to sewing up. Sometimes I do, but I don’t cut the ends (like my hat from the loony bin) sometimes I don’t and I hope for the best… and sometimes I do, but I don’t sew the pieces up. This one I forced myself to because it’s a gift. Only took an hour.

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This speaks for itself.

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And I’m ending here with an in progress shot from this afternoon.

I love this hat, if Christmas is ever over I’m making myself one!

Christmas Gift 2014 #1

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An in progress elf hat.

So yeah, I have around 20-25 thing to make and this is all I have for the first one. Yup. Not looking possible so far.

It’s actually a hat of hats, from a Harry Potter knitting book, based on when Dobby wore all the hats Hermione knitted for the house elves.

I like the happy colours of it, and it’s great for using up odd wool. That’s three hats I’ll be getting out of the yarn I got for my rainbow elf hat.

Christmas is coming

I am so not prepared!

Christmas is coming, and I’ve got very little money to get presents.

I’ve worked out the best way I can deal with this is spending the money I’ve got on wool and making presents for people, but that’s a lot of people I’ve got things to make for.

Wait, how did I even get this many friends?!! Oh, right, church.

So if I only gift for people who’ve bought me lunch there’s at least 7. Possibly more. Ack.

Ladi, Tabitha, Mamie and her husbund, Melodie, Tabitha, Tabitha, some random friend of Melodie’s whose name I’ve forgotton, another woman whose name I’ve forgotton, Christina, Marie-Jo, Ana, and I’m sure there’s others.

And Tabitha bought me lunch like 3 times! So that merits at least a Gusto Cowl.

So if I round it out to 10 people I need to gift, yeah, let’s say 15. Just to be safe. That’s 15 things I need to make, and 15 different things because I can’t just make the same hat for them and hope they’ll not notice.

And I’ve only got odd wool to work with. Hm.

Looks like it’ll be a mixture of toys and hats and things this year. Yay! So now I need to go pattern hunting. Oh dear…

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