Sunday, October 05, 2008

Little Projects . . . Big Notions

I have the idea that I am going to blog once a week and then the weeks sort of fly by. Since I blog twice a week already on my writing blog, coming over here seems to get harder and harder, but I will try to do better.

I suppose it might have to do with the projects I am doing--hats for charity. There really is nothing awe-inspiring about knitting hats, as I've knit so many over the years. But I promised myself I would knit at least 6 hats for the Warm for Winter program and I am nearly there, and in the process using up more of my plethora of Cascade 220 leftovers. This hat above is A Hat Fit for A Boyfriend (Ravel Link). If I made this again, I would probably make it a little bigger, but still an easy pattern, though I messed up the decreases. After this one, I decided to try the Coronet hat, which is a pattern from Winter 2003, which you can see here in all its pink glory.

I have to admit that I did not like making this hat, nor do I like how it turned out. It is just fine as a hat, but personally I don't like it. I know it will look cute on some young girl who needs a warm hat, but not on my head. I also didn't like knitting the band of cable and then picking up stitches around and continuing. I'm being picky, but I just didn't find any joy in knitting this pattern, so it is unique in that I won't be revisiting it. I do like the notion of having that extra band around the ears, which offers some great added warmth, so I decided to knit Elizabeth Zimmerman's A Very Warm Hat. This pattern can be found in her Knitting Around book or The Opinionated Knitter book, and do be warned, turns out to be a really addictive pattern that eats up little half balls of Cascade 220, leaving loads of room in the stash bins.

You knit one hat and then pick up stitches around the edge and knit another. I know, I know, what annoyed me in Coronet thrills me in this pattern. Go figure.

The colorwork portion is a snap to memorize and knit, and makes that nice double warm portion, and when added to the second cap, you have this earmuff effect around your head. 4 layers of woolly warmth. Not even a good icy December Seattle wind is going to get through that.

I finished my second one last night and immediately cast on a third. I think I'll get at least one more out of the brown and gold yarn I have, maybe a second, then I will be up to my half dozen.

As I knit these, I try to imagine the life they have ahead and I worry about the people who will receive them--living on the streets in the dead of winter must be horrific. My hats seem so small, so insignificant in comparison to the greater problems of finding shelter each night and warm meals during the day. I just pray as I knit that they offer comfort and a small hug into a life that might be devoid of even those.

If you have hats you want to donate, visit the Warm for Winter information page, or if you don't live in the Seattle area, and still want to send along a hat, email me (elizbo AT elizabethboyle DOT com) and I'll send you my mailing address. If you get it to me before November 16th, I'll make sure your hat gets in the collection bin.

What charities do you knit for?

1 comment:

tiennie said...

These hats are wonderful - and for such a great cause too!