Silver Threads

a knitting blog with occasional side trips

Lucky guess

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I’m kind of astonished that this hat has worked out. I made Sally Melville’s Canadian-Winter Hat for the first time a number of years ago. The simple term for that first attempt is “failure.” I actually managed to make it too big, both in circumference and in depth, which takes some doing since I wear a 24″ hat.  Certainly the project was educational: this was the project in which I learned that it’s a struggle to frog knitting from the bottom edge. I eventually just got so tired of trying to make it fit that I gave up, patched it up, and donated it to charity. Hopefully some guy out there has been wearing it happily.

Canadian-Winter Hat

With that history, I’d probably be forgiven for never trying the thing ever again, but I do think the pattern is attractive, and anyway, I hate being defeated by a comparatively simple pattern. So I tried again. Frankly, it’s amazing that it worked out, because I did it all “wrong.” I only had a single skein of Lamb’s Pride Bulky to work with. It had 125 yards and the pattern called for 114 yards. I remembered from knitting a sweater in Lamb’s Pride Worsted a few years ago that this yarn grows after its first wash. This is definitely the sort of yarn where you should not only knit a gauge swatch, but wash it as well—except to do that, you should have more leeway than 11 yards of yarn. So, no gauge swatch. Instead I hoped that making the hat one size smaller would make up for the yarn’s inevitable growth. It was a little nerve-wracking knitting something that was clearly too small, just as it had been when I knit that sweater. But it did grow in that first wash, and now fits me just fine.

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