Forthwith & Posthaste
I have a small weakness for speckled yarns. And by ‘small weakness for’ I mean ‘complete inability to refrain from buying.’ But, just to make things fun, I also have a hard time actually using all those gorgeous speckled yarns in projects. Because sometimes the lovely speckles I adore so much don’t play nicely with the complicated stitch patterns I tend to want to use.
But I’ve finally figured out the secret to actually using my (possibly alarming) stash of speckled yarns. The secret is (as it so often is) restraint. The secret is that you only get one showy thing per project. So if you’ve got some gorgeous speckles that want to strut their stuff, you have to give them a restrained stitch pattern on which to do it.
In this case that means a lovely long stretch of stockinette up top (speckled yarns really shine on stockinette). But I couldn’t knit a whole project in plain stockinette and retain my will to live, so there’s a rather delightful bit of dramatic swoopy business down at the beginning (speckled yarns will also generally behave themselves over ribbing and nice straight lines, assuming you make the lines long enough that they stand out against the exuberance of the fabric). And of course there’s a pretty crown and thumb, because why even knit hats or mitts if you can’t have those!
And don’t worry, you absolutely can make this with a non-speckled yarn and it will be lovely. But if you happen to have an opinionated yarn you’ve been having trouble finding just the right project for, this might well be it.
This 26-page ebook includes patterns for both the hat and the mitts. (The patterns are only available together as a set, they are not available individually.)
Skills & scope
Sometimes you just want to sit back and let the yarn do all the work! A little ribbing, a lovely swoopy bit here and there, but mostly, this is just stockinette, giving those tricky yarns room to shine. No really, just sit back, follow the chart, and let the magic happen.
The pattern uses charts, so you will need to know how to follow a knitting chart.
Yarn, gauge & sizing
The hat comes in four sizes (from a 104 stitch cast on to a 128 stitch cast on), and the mitt in three (from a 42 stitch cast on to a 50 stitch cast on) and both are written for five or six gauges (from five to seven and a half stitches per inch in half stitch increments).
That means you can use just about any weight of yarn from fingering up through worsted, and there will be a size to fit pretty much anyone's head or wrist. Basically anything that will give you a fabric with a drape you like somewhere in that range of gauges will work.
The hats in the pictures took about 200 yards of dk-weight yarn, and the mitts took about 200 yards. If you're working with thinner yarn, 300 yards for the hat and 250 for the mitts is a safer bet.
Tools & supplies
You’ll need needles that let you work in the round (circulars or DPNs) in whatever size lets you get a solid fabric with your chosen yarn plus the general knitting tools you need for most projects (scissors to cut your yarn, a darning needle to weave in ends, the occasional stitch marker or bit of scrap yarn to hold stitches).