Elf Hat!

Just in time for Christmas knitting, it’s an elf hat!!

Hat picture

Quick and easy, perfect for the kids on your list.  This is just my Top Down No Math Manly hat, started with 3 st instead of 6!  Made of  Bernat Softee Chunky on size 10 1/2 needles, it worked up in about two non-intensive evenings.

I’ll write the pattern out here, but if you’ve made my top-down no math hat before, just CO 3 and away you go.

Yarn: Whatever you like. 

Needles: whatever the label calls for, or a bit smaller. You can use dpns to start, then switch to a smallish (24”) circular, or you can stay on dpns throughout, or you can magic loop it.

Notions: a tapestry needle and a freewheeling attitude.

Pattern Note: You’ll want to know about a very nearly invisible increase from the the awesomely wonderful TechKnitting. When I use inc1 below, this is what I mean.

CO 3 st.

Row 1 (and all odd rows): k.  Work the first round as if you’re doing icord – just slide the st to the other end of your dpn or circular, and tug the yarn tight before you begin.

Row 2: inc1, k1, repeat to end (6 st)  At this point, or maybe after row 4, you might want to distribute evenly on 3 dpns.  If you’re using magic loop, you’re already good to go. 

Row 4: inc1, k2, repeat to end (9 st)

Row 6: inc1, k3, repeat to end (12 st)

What I’m doing here is increasing 3 st in every other row.  If you want a really long, floppy elf hat, you can work more K rows between the increase rows.  

Continue in this manner until the circumference of your knitting is a little smaller (an inch less? Thereabouts?) than the circumference of the head you’re knitting for.

Note: it’s really easy to make these hats too big.  Happens all the time.  You get increasing, you smush your stitches so they won’t fall off the dpns, and the next thing you know the hat’s too big.  There are a few things you can do:

  1. Stop increasing a little earlier than you think
  2. Rip back to when the increases were enough
  3. Decrease a bit towards the end.

Once you’ve increased enough, just knit around and around until it’s long enough, or you’re about to run out of yarn.  I just BO loosely and let it roll up.  You can rib, or do a few rows of garter st, as you prefer.  Sew in the ends, and seriously consider adding a pom pom or tassel.


If you believed you were beautiful…

What would you do differently if you really and truly believed that you were beautiful?

Would you spend a little more time on your hair in the morning?  A little less?  Would you chop it off?  Would you let it grow?  Color it?  Let it go grey?

Would you wear more skirts?  Ditch the “mom jeans”?  Forgo pantyhose?  Wear a flower behind your ear?

If you believed you were beautiful, would you smile more often?   Let the fake smile melt off your face?  Cry if you needed to?

If you believed, deep down, that you were beautiful, could  you tell the truth?

Would you wash your face every night?  Would you ditch some of the creams and potions?  Would you go to bed early, get your “beauty sleep”?  Would you stay up late, talking and laughing and watching the stars go by?

Never in a million, gazillion years did I think I’d quote Lil Wayne, but then I found this on tumblr:

Believe it.  You are beautiful.

I’m teaching a class! Finding Your Voice: A Creative Writing Workshop

I’m teaching a class this fall in the Gaithersburg/Montgomery Village, MD area.  I hope you’ll join me!  I’m super-excited.

Here’s the official description:

Whether you want to write a blog, a book or just an honest letter, this workshop is designed to shake up your writing habits. Your ideas of what you should sound like may be getting in the way of your true writing voice. We will work to uncover something that sounds like you.
Through class discussion and writing exercises, we will explore the concept of writer’s voice, develop a writing practice and explore writing exercises that you’ll be able to use time and time again.

No. 4029.420
Sept. 26 to Oct. 31
7:30 to 8:30 p.m.
$40/Resident, $50/Non-resident
Whetstone Community Center

Click here for instructions on how to register.

Samurai Review

Samurai knitter posted a review, and it’s great!  “While the rest of the book contains good, solid information, it’s the patterns that really impress me, because it’s not the same old usual stuff. The author went to some real effort to come up with new ideas. … It’s the nicest treatment of group knitting that I’ve ever seen.”

This from a lady who is not afraid to speak her mind.  Go read the whole review – and check out her adorable daughter!

Thank you, Ravelry!!

I love Ravelry! It is Web 2.0 for fiber-lovers, a knitter’s nirvana. On Friday, I created a Knit It Together group (Ravelry link – you have to be a member).  That day, the hits on this site skyrocketed!  Thank you, Ravelry!  Thank you for bringing together knitters from around the globe.  Talk about a knitting circle!!!