I’ve gotten so much in the habit of knitting socks that I have forgotten that hats have many qualities that make them ideal, portable projects.
When I received a review copy of Weekend Hats it reminded me of the advice Elizabeth Zimmermann gave regarding knitting hats as swatches for sweaters. She suggested watch caps for quick swatch hats. But, I don’t really want to knit such simple hats. In their book Weenend Hats, Cecily and Melissa have provided me with a selection of stylish hats for our favorite waitress and I can pick out something for myself to swatch for the cardigan that has been on my To Do List for waaay too long.
The very first hat in the book – the Plait Beanie – looks for like an asymmetrical cloche. It is knit in bulky weight wool - Biggo might be a good choice but I think I could adapt the pattern to worsted weight so I could use it as the swatch sampler for my cardigan.
One restaurant that Bob and I frequent is outdoors. It is covered but it is in a valley and it can be quite cold during the winter. They have heaters for the customers but the staff tends to bundle up a bit. Because I’m always knitting when we are out to dinner, the staff shows a lot of interest in what I’m making. They also like to make shy requests for little goodies like scarves and hats. I think the Semolina Earflap Hat would be ideal for one of our favorite waitresses.
Semolina Earflap Hat
I know that men can be a bit of a challenge when it comes to handknits but I find that men ask me for hats a lot. Ski hats, surfing hats, camping hats, etc. I love being able to fulfill the request quickly. That is why I was happy to see “guy” hats in the Weekend Hats collection. I can choose from the Wanderer Hat, Hued Toque for a skier or the pebbled Beanie.
Hats are also a fun way to explore new techniques or shaping methods. The Evergreen Beanie and Greenery Beret have lovely lace designs.
Cables are dramatic details. The Glashutte Hat has an overall cable pattern that flows into the decreases. The Drift Toque is very interesting because it is knit from side-to-side with meandering cables. The Solitaire Beret is knit in reverse stockinette to highlight the single plaited cable.
The Welted Toque features a new take on a classic stockinette cap. The three, narrow side welts create an asymmetrical shape. The Layered Cloche utilizes short-row shaping for a chic, asymmetrical look that covers both ears.
The comprehensive technique section at the end of the book means that you have everything at your fingertips to knit a hat over a creatively satisfying weekend.