Friday, March 16, 2012

A New Hat For Jordan

contributed by Shawn

I had a very surprising request for a new hat a couple of weeks ago. I offered to make a hat for Jordan long ago but he just wasn't ready to let go of his trusty old watch cap. Jordan lives in his watch cap - those of us who know him hardly recognize him without it.  The old hat has been around for years.  There are frayed ends coming out of it and a hole in one side where a dog got hold of it a while ago.  But there is no replacing something like that until you are really ready to let go so despite intervention attempts, the old hat stayed.   

So I was VERY surprised when he asked me if he was going to get a new hat soon.  He assured me he was ready for a new one.  I struggled for a while on how to create a color combination that would remind him (and everyone else!) of the old hat.  I realized after looking around the shop that I was going to need to combine some different colors to get what I was looking for.  I also wanted something nice and soft but warm that would be comfy to live in.  

After a lot of thought, I decided that a "color fade" project would work the best.  I picked out 3 different colors of the Elsebeth Lavold Silky Wool. This soft blend of wool and silk is available in a wonderful range of earthy colored tweeds. Perfect gentleman colors!  I created an appropriate sized watch cap from the measurements available in my Ann Norling Head Huggers pattern and chose a 3x1 ribbing pattern so the hat would be reversible.   
Hat with no brim - remember - this mannequin head is tiny and has no hair!
I lengthened the hat so that it could be worn with the bottom folded up or down.   
Hat with brim rolled up
The color fade was accomplished by knitting with two strands of the DK yarn held together.  For the bottom 1x1 ribbed section I held two strands of the Dark Oak color together.  Then I changed to my 3x1 rib pattern and held one strand of Dark Oak with one strand of Bronzed Green.  After 10-12 rows I switched out colors again and used two strands of Bronzed Green.  After another 10-12 rows I made a transition using one strand of Bronzed Green and one strand of Granite.  I finished off the top of the hat with the decreases and using two strands of Granite together. 
Beautiful color fade
Folks who saw this hat being made loved the colors.  It is quite handsome!  I gave it to Jordan and he was quite taken with it.  He actually took the old hat off and I caught him taking photos of himself in the new one with his phone later in the evening - I don't think he realized anyone saw that!

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