Last year I resolved to “design something lovely” during Knitting & Crochet Blog Week. As it turns out I didn’t design the pretty little something I had in mind at the time. Other projects got in the way, summery weather turned cooler and the days grew shorter … and I dreamed up something else instead. My Skeppe hat.
If I’m perfectly honest, I can’t really remember what came first; trying to find a stitch pattern that I liked for a hat, or stumbling across a stitch pattern and thinking it would make a great hat … Whatever it was, I found myself swatching this cool tassel stitch pattern, changing it so that I liked it better and swatching it again and again …
I’ve knitted smocked stitches before, but only the variety where you wind yarn around and around stitches held on a cable needle. The thing that appealed to me about this stitch was how simple it was. No extra needle. No winding. I thought it would be perfect for a quick, easy and very satisfying knit, and a great way for newer knitters to stretch their skills.
I started with a prototype for the smallest head in our house and then set about making it work for a heavier yarn. I had fallen in love with the marshmallowy feel and beautiful, earthy colour range of Quince & Co. yarn after knitting a hat for my sister-in-law in Osprey. So, I bought some more, this time in a worsted weight; Lark. The brown is the “Twig” colourway and the yellow, “Carrie’s Yellow”. Aren’t they gorgeous?
The next step was to grade it for different sizes and improve the brim. That actually took a bunch of maths and lots of swatching to get the look I was after. Because the stitch pattern is over a fixed number of stitches I had to fiddle quite a bit to get the ribbing to flow into the body of the hat perfectly.
The final step was working out how to make a tassel with a twisted cord, and then how best to explain it to everyone else! Quite a few tassels were made in the process and I just love how they have turned out.
So, I’ve done it … designed something … just not quite the thing I first thought I would!
And, after nervously sitting on it for months … I’ve finally had my pattern edited and now test knitted by a bunch of fabulous knitters (thank you!!!). I’m pretty close to finalising the pattern now, and pretty soon – it’ll be properly published! I can’t wait, but I am so nervous it’s crazy.
I guess it’s time to look ahead … make a resolution for next year?! That’s easy …
More designing. I’m hooked. Watch this space ;)
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