Christmas Caps

I started knitting almost a year ago. Well, I will admit to having a random scarf or two in my history, but I had never been serious about it. Then I realized that knitting is the most portable stitch work ever and I got right with it.

Over the past year, I have started twelve projects and I have finished three. In defense of my slow stitching, I will say that several of these projects are big and almost completed.

I made a Hitchhiker’s Scarf.

Maria Shell's HitchhikerI also stitched a GAP-tastic Cowl.

Maria Shell GAP-TAstic Cowland this fall I finished a Annabella’s Cowl which I have yet to write about, but this is what it looks like on a model.

anna_JJF_0235_gallery_largeAt the beginning of this month, I got it into my head that I would make all the guys in my life stocking caps for Christmas. I had collected yarn to do this last spring, but it had never happened.

Knowing I didn’t have a lot time, I decided to go with the same pattern for each hat. In fact, my newest hobby is treadmill knitting. It is really not as hard to do as it sounds.

Maria Shell Christmas CapsThe pattern needed to be easy, have a mariner’s look, and be something they would wear. Jason’s Tweed Hat was perfect.

IMG_0850_small2I used Lamb’s Pride Bulky for three of the four hats. This yarn is 85% Wool and 15% Mohair, and one skein did the job perfectly. I had just the tiniest bit of yarn left over after each hat.

Maria Shell Christmas CapsFor the fourth hat, I used Debbie Bliss Donegal Luxury Tweed Chunky. This yarn is 85% Wool and 15% Angora. It was much softer, and I ran out of yarn which resulted in a rather interesting crown for the hat.

Maria Shell Christmas CapI made Walt’s hat first. I know I made some mistakes, but the dark gray did a good job of hiding things.

Maria Shell Christmas CapI loved knitting with the the Lamb’s Pride Bulky. It is super sturdy and the stitches look quite nice.

Maria Shell Christmas CapSon Number One has always worn pink. My mother bought him a Real Men Wear Pink t-shirt in the third grade, and it has been his favorite color since. If you see a tall fellow wearing a pink stocking cap pushing carts at the Southside Fred Myer’s you will have spotted my oldest. I made the first version too small. So today, I reknit it. The hat now fits, but I did this very weird splicing in of the only other pink yarn I had. It looks a bit funky, but like I said, he is tall, and very few people can see this part of the hat when he is wearing it. Plus it now fits. If it really bothers me, I might take it apart again. We will see. Probably that is what will happen…

Maria Shell Christmas CapOzzy’s wanted black. I think his turned out the best of all. I kind of wish he would give it to me.

Maria Shell Christmas CapI think I got the decreases perfect on his.

/Users/taguell/Pictures/Photos Library.photoslibrary/Thumbnails/2015/12/26/20151226-235638/UfK8J0yESv+0utkT2aZ7ww/thumb_IMG_9096_1024.jpgTripp wanted yellow. I made a few mistakes on the crown and they are glaringly obvious to a skilled knitter. I am going to tell myself that if I hadn’t been under extreme deadline, I would have done a better job. Still, he is very proud of this yellow hat.

/Users/taguell/Pictures/Photos Library.photoslibrary/Thumbnails/2015/12/26/20151226-235638/UfK8J0yESv+0utkT2aZ7ww/thumb_IMG_9096_1024.jpgThis is the first time I have used double pointed needles. It was awkward, but by the time I got to the last hat, I could see a real difference in my ability to wrangle them.

/Users/taguell/Pictures/Photos Library.photoslibrary/Thumbnails/2015/12/26/20151226-235638/UfK8J0yESv+0utkT2aZ7ww/thumb_IMG_9096_1024.jpgTripp and Ozzy actually got half-knitted caps in their stockings, but I managed to finish them by the end of Christmas Day so that they could wear them to dinner.

/Users/taguell/Pictures/Photos Library.photoslibrary/Thumbnails/2015/12/26/20151226-235638/UfK8J0yESv+0utkT2aZ7ww/thumb_IMG_9096_1024.jpgEach hat took about five hours to knit.

/Users/taguell/Pictures/Photos Library.photoslibrary/Thumbnails/2015/12/26/20151226-235638/UfK8J0yESv+0utkT2aZ7ww/thumb_IMG_9096_1024.jpgI am sold on the beauty of knitting a cap. It is an inexpensive project that can be finished, worn, and loved.

Have you gotten any holiday knitting done this season?

This entry was published on December 26, 2015 at 6:06 PM. It’s filed under Just Plain Stories, The Knit Report and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

19 thoughts on “Christmas Caps

  1. I do not know how to knit…. but I’ve thought about it many times. My mother knits. And I have an entire duffle bag filled with knitted caps that she’s given us over the years. We love the fact that they are handmade, but today – for example – its 80 degrees. So just not much need ’round here. Good for you for making them for the guys!

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  2. Love your hats!
    I made two chunky one-button cowls in about two weeks. I used Noro yarn and one was seed stitched, the other rib stitched using #13 needles. A lot of fun and super satisfying as far as getting them completed, including buttonhole, button, blocked, wrapped and given!

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  3. The hats are lovely. I bet they will be lovingly worn for many years.

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  4. Great job with the caps! They are one of my favorite go-to gifts. (Chunky cowls are beginning to be one of my second favs!). They are definitely my favorite baby gift – especially for winter babies. (I have made several for my grandson, due at the end of Feb.!!!).
    In-the-round knitting is a great skill to acquire. It gets easier with every project!

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  5. An alternative to double pointed needles is two circular needles. Put half of the stitches on each needle. When you get to the gap between needles, change to the other needle by knitting with the far end of the new needle. The same stitches will always remain on one needle. Some folks like the magic loop method, but it’s too slow for me. Nice work on the hats!

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  6. I’ve been knitting very seriously for 10 years now and hats are my go to gift! As you get more skilled they will get easier and faster. Personally, I like to use 16 inch circular needles and then I just use traveling loop to finish off the top. It’s a bit tricky with the 16 inch needle, but I manage. I made hats for my brother and nephew this year for Christmas. I used worsted weight for both and finished them in 3 days. The rest of my handmade gifts were sewn. I made bags and pillowcases for my nieces and SIL and potholders for my mom and MIL. Great job on the hats! I’ve found that they are my most used gifts when I give them.

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  7. I was a voracious knitter and spinner before I became a quilter. I knit so many caps that I gave myself carpal tunnel syndrome!! That’s actually when I became a quilter–to make myself take a break from knitting.

    Anyway, great job on the hats, and I agree, it is still the most portable stitching out there. I usually have a shawl or a scarf in the works.

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    • Debby- It is interesting that even though you switched from knitting to quilting you are still very much a handwork person–that didn’t change. I bet you’ve made some beautiful knitted things.

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  8. Nice hats! I like the decrease pattern on the black one. I hear you on the portability!

    I managed to just finish the 3rd pair of mittens for my nieces & nephew in time to mail it off the Monday before Christmas. That last pair gave me fits. The first attempt were way, way too small. Second try was also too small – but only by a little. I finally just went overboard on these and they’re a little too big. Oh well. 5 year old’s going to grow anyway. And by all accounts, they like their new mittens. Yay!

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  9. Thanks for sharing your knitting! I, too, have made the Hitchhiker shawl–and Lamb’s Pride is also one of my favorite yarns. Thanks for the tip on the GAP-tastic Cowl: I have just printed it out for future knitting. And TREADMILL KNITTING — talk about multi-tasking! I am impressed!

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    • Nancy, I don’t go very fast, but I can knit for 15-20 minutes and get walking and knitting done at the same time. Then I bump up the sped and listen to Audible books. I am actually not a very good multi-tasker, but I can do a few things–cook and listen to the radio, fold laundry and talk on the phone, quilt and listen to books on Audible, and walk on the treadmill and knit. That is about it for me.

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