Posted in Family, knitting

Made to Order Hats

A couple months ago my nephew, Anthony, called me.  He asked me to make him a hat. Is anything cuter than a kid asking for a hand knit hat!?! I inquired about what color he would like, he gave me very detailed guidelines. Blue, with green, white and black stripes. it would have to have earflaps for sledding. I asked if he would like a pompon and he quickly replied those were for girls………and speaking of girls- his sister, Sam, would probably need a hat, too. He told me she would want purple, pink and more purple, stripes, and with earflaps of course. Oh, and a pompon, you know, because she IS a girl.

Anthony and Santa with Baily my mom’s dog

When we went to D.C. in November and while I was there we hit up Fiberspace in Alexandria. It’s a really great LYS that has a large selection of yarns and I knew it would have all the colors I need in a washable wool. I choose Berroco Ultra Wool. They did indeed have lots of colors to choose from. While we were there Hanna’s boyfriend requested her to knit a hat for him since it was so cold to our New Mexico blood. I grabbed a skein of yarn for him, too. I didn’t have the right size needles with me, they had exactly what I needed in Knitter’s Pride, so those came home with me too. I also picked a skein of Neighborhood Fiber, CO fingering weight, wool/cashmere blend. This yarn is locally dyed in Baltimore, MD they have a variety of colors named after neighborhoods in and around D.C. I picked the color Rosemount as this is the neighborhood Stevie lives in, in Alexandria.

Back to Anthony’s hat. With the crazy November I didn’t really get to start knitting his hat until we left for Virginia. I planned to use the pattern SureFire Hat by Susan B Anderson.  Driving across the country with a car slammed full of our stuff, my husband, son, and three dogs there wasn’t much space for knitting. I had thought I would knock the hat out quickly. Not so much in reality. I worked on it in the evenings at hotels and finished it here in Virginia in our temporary apartment. After I wove in all the ends and washed it, did the crocheted edging, braiding and then really looked at the finished hat I realized it was going to be way too big, It was even big on me! So I started knitting the hat again with a smaller needle.  The smaller needle was just what was needed. the second hat was perfect!
I did add a pompon to the larger hat
but of course not to Anthony’s

I had about a week to knit Sam’s hat. Hats are quick so I would have plenty of time to get them in the mail for Christmas. I used another Susan B Anderson pattern she put out with Spud and Cloe. it’s a very cute pattern. I knit the hat quickly, everything went as expected. I wove in all the ends and washed it and put it on drying rack next to Anthony’s. Wait!!! It was HUGE! Oh my GOSH! No Way!

Sam’s hat next to Anthony’s hat

I was so frustrated. What the heck! I knit this hat with the same yarn and same the needles as Anthony’s. Why was it so big? I still couldn’t believe it. I went to bed with a heavy heart.  In the morning, after I had coffee, I revisited the hat drama. I double checked the needles. Size 6, that was right. I pondered awhile.  I read through the pattern, and then did it again.  What did I do?  In desperation I counted the stitches. Geeze, that was it. I made the Woman’s size, I needed the Child’s size. UGH! What stupid mistake. So I did the only thing I could do. I cast on another hat.

This time I decided not follow the pattern for the extended decrease section on the crown and worked a traditional one decrease row, one knit row crown. I didn’t really like the slouchiness the pattern has. I thought it had too much weight and might not stay on so well sledding down hills, I also didn’t do the extra pompons and tassels, not because the weren’t absolutely adorable [which they totally are] but because I didn’t think I’d have enough yarn.


the size difference is apparent

I didn’t get them out in time for Christmas. I sent the kids their Christmas gifts after and they had New Year’s Eve Christmas gifts instead. That probably made them even more special since they didn’t get lost in the jumble and chaos of the holiday.  I’d say they were a win as the kids gave me two thumbs up! And as a bonus Charlie and Leah also received great New Years Eve hats!

Anthony and Sam December 31st, 2017

My mom said they are loving their hats and are wearing them through the really cold snow filled outings.  Mission accomplished!

It’s clearly making the cold more bearable

Happy Knitting!