Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Baby Sherbet Swirl: Knit Hat Pattern

Baby Sherbet Swirl

Baby Sherbet Swirl
Yarn: DK/Light/Worsted weight yarn. I used a cotton/rayon blend from a Smiley’s sale in NYC.
Needles: Size 6 or appropriate for yarn. I used my Denise Interchangables, Size 6. I have a special technique for using just one set of interchangeables for 2-circs knitting in the round.

Step-by-Step/For-the-Sake-of-Posterity/This-is-Exactly-What-I-Did Instructions:
CO 55 sts. Join to knit in the round using your favorite method, being careful, as ever, not to twist the cast on row.
Begin knitting: *K6, P1*
Repeat this row and continue until you’re ready for the decreases – I did about 4 inches.
1st Decrease round: *K6, S1, P1, psso*
2nd Dec round: *K5, S1, P1, psso*
3rd Dec round: *K4, S1, P1, psso*
Continue decrease rounds in this pattern until you only have about 16 stitches left. Cut yarn about 8-10” away from last stitch. Using a yarn needle, thread the yarn through the remaining loops and remove them from the knitting needles. DO NOT PULL TIGHT. Yet. Thread the yarn through the loops again, so that the end yarn goes through all the loops at the top twice. Then tighten the first round through the loops and then the second round through the loops. The knitting police will not ticket you for skipping the second go-round, but you get a much more satisfyingly tight close if you do both rounds. Weave in the ends and Voila!

Conceptual/Recipe/Y’all-Know-What-You’re-Doing Instructions: This is basically an all-stockinette roll brim cap with a variation: a purl stitch at regular intervals that shifts with each round. You can make this with any yarn in any size. When you know approximately how many stitches you would need to make a regular hat with your yarn and needles, you can figure out an exact number based on the idea of a multiple of 7 plus 6 stitches. If you don’t like any of those numbers, you can use a multiple of 8 plus 7 stitches, or a multiple of 6 plus 5 stitches… you get the drift. Then you’re doing a purl stitch every 7th stitch (or every 8th stitch or every 6th stitch). Because you took one out of the cast-on number, every time you come around the round of knitting, you’re “one ahead,” and every purl stitch happens just above and to the left of the one below it.

The decreases might not be the very best looking one to use with this hat. They were what I thought of on the fly to imitate the purl stitch, and they’re only mediocre on that front, but I chanted to myself that done is better than perfect. Done is better than perfect, and the decrease above is done, and works well enough. I’ll probably try some other decreases next time to get one that looks a little better – feel free to do the same and let me know your results.

Tricks I used on this hat and others:
- When joining the cast-on row in a round, put the 1st stitch and the last stitch next to each other at the end of one needle. Pull one of these stitches OVER the other, and put the one that is now at the end of the needle back on another needle (your other circular or dpn).
- I knit it with two circulars with my interchangeable needle set. The magic of knitting with two circs is not to be underestimated, and instructions are pretty easy to find all on the web. The magic of using only one set of interchangeable needles, with only two tips that are the right size, is a stroke of genius if I do say so myself. Or at least, I did a lot of needle-tip changing every single half-round before I came up with how to set them up without having to change them. If you post interest in the comments, I will make a tutorial.
- Double pull-through at the end. As described above in the step-by-step instructions. Not an AmberCake original innovation, but I think it’s vastly underutilized. I love it when the principles of friction and surface area work together in fiber. No, really. I think about that more than you know.

4 Comments:

Blogger futuregirl said...

I'm not a knitter, but your hat is cute as can be. I also agree, "done is better than perfect." :)

1/24/2007 9:59 AM  
Anonymous Dipsy D. said...

What a beautiful pattern this is, thanks so much for sharing it!

1/26/2007 1:58 AM  
Anonymous kendelll said...

Adorable baby cap! As a beginner knitter, perhaps I can knit this precious one! Great site...thanks so much for the wonderful pattern! Will visit again, soon!

8/06/2007 11:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would love to see a tutorial on the interchangeable needles for magic loop.

10/03/2008 1:01 PM  

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