Hats from Tanis and homespun

I had leftover yarn from two Tanis Fiber Arts projects – look how beautifully they go together on this hat! The yarn is Green Label Aran in colors Lilac, Lemongrass, Mallard, and Natural. I used the Flap Happy Hat pattern – last time I made it in size large child / small adult, and it was huge – on me! – so this time I made the toddler size. Good thing – it fits my 11-year-old nicely, and it’s none too tight on me, either! The yarn is nicely springy, and the stitch patterns on the hat are very stretchy, so combined, you get a hat with almost unlimited stretch.

Knit on US 7 needles, it required only partial skeins of each color – I knit the edging (instead of crocheting as called for in the pattern) by picking up and knitting a row all the way around, and then casting off on the next row. Also, I didn’t like the pom-poms called for in the pattern (probably because I’m lousy at making them) so I threaded through 12 strands of different colors of yarn, grouped them in sets of three and braided them, and then tied them off at the end to leave a tassel.

I left the hat peaked at the top, as the pattern calls for, but next time I might try for a more rounded top. Such fun to find different combinations of all of the great Tanis colors!

I also knit my first project out of homespun yarn – I ordered it on Etsy from Aunt Peggy’s Closet. The color is Purple Flame (48% kid mohair, 43% superwash merino, 9% nylon). It was rated DK and had only 116 yards, so I knit a baby hat pattern, Mybootee Babee Chullo (size large). I used the recommended US 5s, which seemed right for a DK yarn.

Two major problems: First, I ran out of yarn halfway through, even though the size large wasn’t supposed to use more than 100 yards. I finished it off with a Blue Alpaca skinny cotton from my stash, which looked good, but I would have rather the entire hat be knit from the homespun. The second – and “bigger” – problem: It turned out huge! I mean, gigantically huge. Way too big on me (and remember, this is a baby size large pattern!) My husband can wear it, but I’m not sure if the color and look is really “manly” enough. The morale of this story – I should have swatched, and not taken the yarn’s word for it that it was DK weight! Ah well, I’ll know better the next time I knit with homespun.

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