As far as I can tell, a leftover skein of yarn is sort of equivalent to a spare half-yard of fabric.
A psychological burden that will weigh increasingly heavily upon you until you eventually use it for something, anything a chance to make accessories! And I had an untouched skein remaining after knitting my first knitted thing. I didn’t really have any sense of what to do with 160-something yards of DK-weight wool, but then I happened strangely effortlessly upon this free Purl Soho pattern, which called for my existing weight of yarn and my owned size of circular needles (US 3). Whaaat! So I made a hat for Professor Boyfriend.
I cannot recommend too strongly knitting a sweater, then a hat. I feel like I sneezed this out in less than a week. Also, I had some extremely helpful voices suggest I was twisting my purl stitches on my sweater, which was massively useful to this beginner, because it led me to read about stitches generally and I learned a whole handful of things. The real biggie: I wasn’t twisting my purl stitches. Because it turns out I wasn’t actually purling at all, because I didn’t know how! I was doing some other thing! But now I do know how to purl, without twisting! Ta-da!
I realized this accidentally while watching a YouTube video about stitch mounts in which an experienced woman slowly and kindly pointed out how one thing is different from a different thing, which is more knowledge than I used to have about stitch mounts. Reading about twisted stitches also led me to discover twisted rib, which I find a lot handsomer than the flimsy 1×1 DK-weight ribbing I made before. So I disobeyed the Purl Soho pattern and knit through the back loop instead. Ohoho! They don’t own me!
I knit a size M since Professor Boyfriend has, I’m pretty sure, an average, medium-ish head. Also because I had the one skein of yarn it called for, which I just realized THIS SECOND is irrelevant because different skeins are different amounts of yarn!! Aahhh!! Well, I got away with it! Cripes. I do wish it was an inch or two longer, but I haven’t blocked it yet because I’m waiting for hot weather, so maybe I can get a little more length out of it then. Professor Boyfriend says it fits fine, and it’s his noggin, so either way we cool.
Thanks to YouTube stitch mount lady (a link I sadly did not save to my spreadsheet; weird), I learned to distinguish between a knit stitch and a purl stitch. This distinction was previously invisible to me. Those were the only two choices for the majority of the hat so I was feeling pretty good and competent, especially on the part that’s just a tube! Also, for a while it was a knit-until-it-measures-etc. pattern, not a count-your-rows kind of pattern, which is much more relaxing.
My single most triumphant moment (which I can also credit directly to the YouTube maven): if I were to have followed the directions for one of the decrease rounds, I would have ended up purling my knits and knitting my purls – and I noticed, and corrected it! I caught a pattern error! Or who knows, maybe I miscounted something and messed up, but if so I didn’t compound my mistake, and I still get to feel triumphant.
Eventually the hat stops being a tube and starts becoming a hat. The decrease rounds go quickly, even with the counting involved. I got to apply my magic loop skills but there’s a moment near the end where you’re working with like, 6 stitches, and it feels like surely not? This is not enough of stitches? But somehow it came together, and without a hole (which I was going to brand as a sunroof)!
The twisted rib is very stretchy and I like the whirly effect as seen on the crown of Professor Boyfriend’s head. And the color (which he was not consulted on) looks nice on him! He’s a nice-looking guy! I know this was an outrageously simple project but I feel good for getting through it without errors.
Kind of hilariously, a few days after I finished this and gave it to Professor Boyfriend, a birthday gift from my sister arrived in the mail. She’d knit me a hat that looks like it could eat this one for breakfast. Also green. I knew she was making me something because she ran some allergy stuff by me – I can’t remember the exact details but this is seriously luxe; the words ‘silk’ and ‘alpaca’ both came into it somewhere. And it is GORGEOUS.
Professor Boyfriend is lovely and gracious about his lightweight hat though. Sometimes we wear our green beanies at the same time, and this event is known as Hat Club. All are welcome.
Anyway, I’m proud of my knitting progress so far! I’m definitely not a natural, but I can feel my understanding getting better, and I think that’s the most important part – my technical skills improve more meaningfully if I actually get what I’m doing. And it’s nice to know a knitting project doesn’t have to take over a year!!
Back to sewing as per ushe next week! And thanks again to all the knitters who shared their expertise. 😊 Mad grats (⬅️gratitude with attitude). Ta-ta!
Pattern: Classic Ribbed Hat from Purl Soho
Pattern cost: $0.00
Size: Adult M
Supplies: 1 skein of DK (leftover Cloudborn Highland DK in Ocean)
Total time: 2/24 – 2/28, 2022
Total cost: $0.00