Friday Photo Dump

Here’s all the random photos I’ve been collecting on my desktop.  I’m cleaning up and getting rid of this clutter!  (because digital cleaning is so much nicer than actual cleaning!)

This is from the short row hat binge two weeks back.  I like the colors, I like the shaping, I like the fit, I like all the wedges, I like the stockinette texture!  I do wish the short rows were just a bit less harsh.  I used the standard wrap and turn for the short rows.  My intention is to try YO short rows and/or German short rows to improve it.  I just haven’t gotten around to it yet.  It’s on the list.  Soon come.

I’m really putting the hiker into this Hitchhiker.  It’s been on the go and making good progress.  This was a particularly photogenic day in Golden Gate Park.  It’s had me wishing I was back in Iceland.  I stood in front of a lot of waterfalls taking selfies wearing that hat in Iceland!

Several days later, the sun came out briefly.  I had to run and hide in the nearest bar I could find.  And this happened…


What you don’t see is the Golden State Warriors logo, painted on the window next to the Warriors graphic you do see.  The whole Warriors mashup has always tickled my fancy, so shadows and the garter ridges lining up just right and then there’s that weird green dot?  It must be a fairy.  I don’t think there could be any other explanation for it?


and then, my mom painted me a sock blank!  I can’t wait to get started!  I’m trying to talk myself into socks but it’s not going well.  I think it needs to become something that will be seen!  I want to see these colors!

And then, Rocky didn’t get mad when I forced him to be a pom pom photo prop.  He didn’t help much though.


And then, Trillium Sequoia’s birth announcement showed up with this photo.  Trillium is the white flower on the hat, the pinecones are from a Sequoia.  The whole thing is just so sweet!  I find it irresistible.  And they did a very nice job of hiding just how huge the hat really it.  I don’t really know how big babies are?  She’ll be growing into it soon enough.  Perhaps a dress to match?  (this is how I end up with 10 projects on the needles…)

I have done a little de-cluttering around the house.  I came across a bag of stuff from my cross stitching days.  I always wanted the back to be clean.  Looking at it now, I’m completely impressed with myself.  I don’t have the patience or focus for it anymore.  Every time I try to cross stitch now, I fling it down out of total boredom and disinterest in about 9 minutes.  I loved it once upon a time though. How else do I explain that pheasant??

And with that, my desktop is clear and it’s time to start the weekend!  Hope you have a good one :)

Knit ALL the Things

My Stash exploded yesterday!  There was no use fighting it.  I’m considering Starburst, the latest from Stephen West.  I haven’t figured it out yet though.  I did some swatching.


There’s some good parts but nothing I can commit to yet.  I’m gonna sleep on it for a few days.  I was still in a cast on mood though.  A less than successful swatch does not even begin to scratch the cast on itch.


SO…I started my next sweater!  I swatched a month ago and I’ve been threatening to start it ever since.  Once it got on the needles though, I was promptly ready to ignore it.   So I started a new hat too!  Why not?  It’s nearly done already!  If that wasn’t justification enough…I finished my Muh-Muh shawl!  More on that tomorrow :)

In the meantime, I’m gonna cast on a few more things…gotta be ready for the impending 3-day weekend, after all!

Don’t Quote Me on That

Last week, while embracing the idea of non-head shaped hats, I may have said something sort of like ‘Almost only counts in horseshoes, hand grenades and hat shaping’.  It should come as no surprise, therefore, that my next hat was as perfectly head shaped as a hat can get.

It’s perfect (except for the whole pink, angora part…go figure that it would fit perfectly but I’ll certainly never wear it.)   Once again, the shape is due to short rows.  This time, I’ve stacked the short rows directly on top of each other instead of staggering them around the hat.  The result is a more spacious forehead and a flatter back.

The garter ridges are my short rows.  I’ve done two short rows, the first one is 90% of the row, the second one is 70% of the row, followed by 3 rounds of stockinette stitch.  I repeated the short row-stockinette sequence over and over, until I got the length I wanted, then closed the top up…Viola!  Perfect Pink Hat!  <- Click for details on Ravelry

Of course, all these short row hats have had one common theme, stacking deep or long wedges to build a hat.  What happens when the shorts rows are short and shallow?  Here’s one possibility…

This is the most conventional hat in terms of shaping.  It’s essentially a stockinette beanie with stripes.    As I was knitting the stripes, I threw in single short rows of 4-6 stitches at regular intervals.  I was able to close the hat with standard decreases, (K8, K2tog followed by K7, K2tog, followed by K6, K2tog…etc)

Here’s the Ravelry Details!

For anyone looking to attempt a short row hat, this one is a great place to start.  You can adapt any basic stockinette beanie.  Whenever you feel like it, just do a wrap and turn, knit as few or as many stitches as you feel, place another wrap and turn, and you’re back on the right side of the hat, continuing along as though your row had never been interrupted!

I did several short rows per stripe, but maybe you only want one short row.  Maybe you want to stack your little short rows or maybe you want to stagger them so they bias across the hat.  Maybe you want them to be completely random.

Rest assured, I’ve got all these options on my list!  The urge to make hats is finally waning though.  For the first time in over a week, I finished a hat and did not cast on the next one right away.  Who knows, I might not do any hat knitting today?!?



FO Friday – It Worked


As I was continuing on with yesterday’s short row free for all hat, I got to a point where I wondered if I had embraced the Anything Goes spirit just a little too much.  Luckily, it was a brief moment.  It’s true that hats don’t have to be head shaped!  I’m very pleased with how my wonky hat turned out.

I’m officially amending the Almost rule.  Almost only counts in horseshoes, hand grenades and hat shaping!

There is definitely a lot going on.  In addition to non-standard shaping, mixing three different variegated yarns is dangerous.  As a general rule, I would suggest against it.  The short rows make it work though.  It’s a kitchen sink approach.  I’m loving it.   It’s only empowered me to make even more radical choices.  I’ve got some real doozies in the stash basket.  I can’t wait to use them now!

I’m backing off the ledge a bit with the next one though.  It’s on the needles already and looking rather lovely.  I think I’ll keep it that way.  There are still plenty of solids in the stash, after all!


For the inquiring minds, here’s my Rav pages, with more details… Kitchen Sink Hat  or  New WIP

Happy Friday!  Hope you have a woolly great weekend!

Method to the Short Row Madness


Yesterday’s WIP is today’s FO and today’s WIP will probably become tomorrow’s FO.  That’s the way hats work, the train just keeps rolling on.  I had fun with this one!  I kept the short rows going all the way to the top.  It’s got the perfect bit of asymmetric wonk happening.  If there’s anything I appreciate it’s intentional wonk.  Yeah, I meant to do that! :)

I kept the purple hat balanced, I keep my repeats regular.  For the next one, I’m going completely irregular.  It’s an experiment.  You know those ice breaker games where everyone says their name with an adjective beginning with the same letter and then you have to repeat the people’s names prior to you?  I was always Experimental Emily.

I’m still Experimental Emily.

So let’s see if I can explain what I did.  Once you allow yourself some wonk, the pressure of perfection is gone.  No need to match a pattern or even use one.  Whatever happens…happens.  and it’s okay.  And it’s easy!  You can do this, honest.


I drew a color coded picture, maybe it’ll help.  ha!

1 – Cast on & ribbing, starts the same as any hat.  There’s no reason you have to use ribbing.  Insert your favorite beginning.  Knitter’s choice!

now onto the body of the hat…

2 – The first wedge,  I start by knitting one round.  Next round won’t really be a round, it’s going to be a row.  At this point, I’m going to start knitting flat, back and forth for the short rows.  I’m starting with a long row, almost the entire round.  I decided to use 5 stitches as the number for my short rows.  Each row, I knit to 5 stitches before the last turn.

Find the red 2 on the picture, that’s the point I’m at.  I knit across that first red line.  I stop 5 stitches before the end of the row.  That’s the first wrap and turn.  By turning you’re now working the hat inside out.  Work almost all the way back to beginning, stopping 5 stitches short.  Wrap and turn.  Now you’re back on the outside of the hat, work to 5 stitches before the last wrap & turn.  Lather.  Rinse.  Repeat.

Just keep going back & forth until you don’t have enough stitches left between your wrap & turns.

Why did I pick 5 stitches for my turns?  I dunno, seemed like a good number.   Higher numbers mean fewer rows.  Lower numbers mean more rows.  Higher numbers & fewer rows mean skinny stripes, lower numbers/more rows mean fatter stripes.  5 seemed like a nice mid-point.   On my current WIP, I’m not even keeping that number consistent.

3 – the next wedge.  At this point you’ve got options.  Wedge placement and maybe you don’t do a wedge at all.  In the purple hat, I worked a few rounds of straight stockinette between wedges.  In the current WIP, I’m working from one wedge to the next directly.

The diagram shows a regular wedge rotation, which is what I did in the purple sample.  I did the same wedge repeat each time rotating it 1/4 of the way around.  To do this, I simple cut the working yarn and slipped the first 1/4 of the stitches to the right needle unworked.  Essentially I just changed the place where the round begins.  Why not?

This is a liberating decision!  My row can begin anywhere!  So the purple hat is the regular, planned approach.  The current WIP is completely free form.  I’m just sort of plunking the beginning of round marker down where it seems like a good idea.

I didn’t draw wedges 4 & 5 but labeled their approximate starting positions.

and then closing the top?  Good luck explaining that.  I just did it.  I incorporated standard decreases in the stockinette sections.  K6, K2tog around, K5, K2tog around, etc.  But I kept my short rows going and did some decreasing in the short rows.  The whole point was asymmetric shapes, so I didn’t get to hung up on regularity.

Really, if you’ve read this far, my point is…just try it.  Forget ‘the rules’ and just try whatever you feel like.  We all know what shape a head is.  Hats can really be any shape.  Hats don’t really have to head shaped.   (<- the beginning of my rationalization for really weird shaped hats!)

Stay tuned…the hat binge is not over yet!


WIP Wednesday – Still Hat Binging


As usual, my hat binge is showing no signs of slowing!  I don’t know why I’ve never explored the possibilities of short row hats before.  I’m loving it right now though!  It’s a great way to use up all those yarny oddments laying around.

My first hat this week, is using a rustic, hand spun, llama yarn that my mom dyed.  And when I say rustic, I don’t mean slubby and homespun, I mean vegetable matter.  Lots of vegetable matter.  Even that doesn’t do it justice, I’m picking full on tree branches out of this stuff.  It’s really pretty though!  And it’s bulky!  One afternoon in the park, even with a false start that required frogging, and it was done!

green triangle

I’m happy with the result.  The short rows give it a nice close fit, not much slouch in the back at all.  With the bulk & weight of this hat, you definitely don’t need any extra fabric hanging around.

short row hat

The short rows are the garter ridges.  The color change highlights them nicely, really gives you a clear picture of how the shaping is effected.  You can imagine a big round noggin filling the front of the hat, and no weird gaping to bunch up around the back of the neck!  Perfect!

As I was patting myself on the back for a job well done, I started the next hat.  More stashbusting scraps, more short rows.  All was going well until…


I forgot to change needles at the end of my ribbing.  D’oh!  No big deal.  I’m now knitting a hat on size 3s.  It’s still going to be lovely.  It’s just going to take forever.  (or a day and a half…somehow I’ll manage to survive!)


Check Ravelry for the details:  Rustic Llama  or  Purple Waves