Wednesday, 15 February 2017

Hat and gloves

I find it difficult to concentrate enough to knit small items. I have been in need of new fingerless mittens for several years after the ones I knitted nine years ago have slowly worn out. I have darned them several times , occasionally with non-matching yarn, but now they are really beyond repair. They illustrate the foolishness of using Kidsilk Haze in items with heavy use.

It occurred to me that Noro Sekku, a lace weight yarn with cotton and silk, would be a good choice for light mittens that I could use autumn and spring on my cold hands. Because it is so thin I added a strand of other laceweight yarn. I like to think of it as Debbie Bliss Rialton Lace, but I could be wrong.
I found the pattern in the book Noro Accessories. It has a random cables, but as I'm incapable of doing randomness without devising an intricate system to achieve it, I decided to leave the cables out altogether. I used the stitch count and thumb shaping from the pattern. It worked fine. The panel of stocking stitch on the sides didn't end up in quite the right place, due to my misreading the pattern I expect. The yarns worked fine, too, and the mittens are very comfortable to wear, even when it is quite cold. The colour repeat is longer than the yarn needed for two mittens. They look much neater after washing and wearing.

Random cabled mittens, Noro Sekku and Debbie Bliss Rialto lace, size 2.0 mm dp needles, 30 gr
Knitted 16 September to 31 October 2016

The hat was part of a Christmas present, ie the present consisted of an offer to knit a hat. Since the offer was not accepted until it got cold after Christmas I didn't start knitting until then.
I found the pattern in Erika Knight's book Men's knits – Striped hat. For yarn I chose Rowan Hemp Tweed, 75% wool and 25% hemp. I wanted to use double pointed needles, but as I had given away my set of 4.5 mm I had to use one size smaller, so I had to recalculate the stitch count. The row
tension had changed as well, so I adjusted the row number of each colour, and I did the shaping every 3 instead of every 2 rows. And I started from the crown, and did the shaping a different way. So in the end, there was very little left of the pattern.
It turned out to be a very useful hat after all. It fits. I liked knitting with the yarn. It lacks the pure wool feel, but it is nice. It would be good for a lighter sweater than wool.
Striped hat, Rowan Hemp Tweed, shades Pumice and Granite, size 4 mm dp needles, 62 gr
Knitted 30 December 2016 to 11 January 2017