Happy Mother’s Day

The “Mother’s Day Proclamation” by Julia Ward Howe was one of the early calls to celebrate Mother’s Day in the United States. Written in 1870, Howe’s Mother’s Day Proclamation was a pacifist reaction to the carnage of the American Civil War and the Franco-Prussian War. The Proclamation was tied to Howe’s feminist belief that women had a responsibility to shape their societies at the political level.

In recognition of the history of the day, Mother’s Day for Peace, in conjunction with Brave New Films, created this video. They are also raising funds and awareness for No More Victims, an non-profit organization that brings Iraqi children injured in the war to the U.S. for treatment. The Mother’s Day for Peace website is currently down; I suspect they have gotten too much traffic today. Here is a copy of the video hosted by YouTube:

The text of Julia Ward Howe’s proclamation follows.
Happy Mother’s Day to all!

Mother’s Day Proclamation
Arise, then, women of this day!
Arise, all women who have hearts,
Whether our baptism be of water or of tears!
Say firmly:
“We will not have great questions decided by irrelevant agencies,
Our husbands will not come to us, reeking with carnage, for caresses and applause.
Our sons shall not be taken from us to unlearn
All that we have been able to teach them of charity, mercy and patience.
We, the women of one country, will be too tender of those of another country
To allow our sons to be trained to injure theirs.”
From the bosom of the devastated Earth a voice goes up with our own.
It says: “Disarm! Disarm! The sword of murder is not the balance of justice.”
Blood does not wipe out dishonor, nor violence indicate possession.
As men have often forsaken the plough and the anvil at the summons of war,
Let women now leave all that may be left of home for a great and earnest day of counsel.
Let them meet first, as women, to bewail and commemorate the dead.
Let them solemnly take counsel with each other as to the means
Whereby the great human family can live in peace,
Each bearing after his own time the sacred impress, not of Caesar,
But of God.
In the name of womanhood and humanity, I earnestly ask
That a general congress of women without limit of nationality
May be appointed and held at someplace deemed most convenient
And at the earliest period consistent with its objects,
To promote the alliance of the different nationalities,
The amicable settlement of international questions,
The great and general interests of peace.

[Posted by Melissa while Sarah-Hope tries to fend off Round 2 of her evil nasty virus.]

Yarn of the Week

Paton’s Soy Wool Stripes has been the yarn of the week. I read about it on Crazy Aunt Purl, and when I got to the part about it costing only $6 a skein and being available at Michael’s, I grabbed the car keys. Crazy Aunt Purl had compared its colorways to Noro, which added to my motivation.

When I located SWS at Michael’s, I had an “Oh, this is that yarn!” moment. I’ve been eyeing SWS in the Herrschner’s catalogue, but their photos left me uncertain about how this yarn would knit up, so I’d been doing my usual thing: folding down a corner to mark the yarn, but then tossing the catalogue in the recycliing without ordering. And a good thing, too—Herrschner’s wants $2 a ball more than Michael’s, and that’s before adding in postage.

I bought one skein each of Natural Blue, Natural Geranium, and Natural Green (which is as much pink as it is green). I believe the “natural” is in the name because each yarn includes some warm taupe in its color range. The blue SWS has become a rolled-brim beanie for Melissa, something she asked for a while back. To stop the rolling, I followed the stockingette opening rows with six rows of P one row, then K1, P1 one row, and had my second SWS-aha! moment. The stitch had been improvisation on my part (or so I thought), but actually, it’s a pattern I used on several scarves a year ago, which worked particularly well because the stitchess on each side are both pretty enough to wear as the “right” side: a knot-like stitch on one and a knit/moss rib on the other. So once I’d finished Melissa’s beanie, I pulled out the geranium skein and knit a whole hat using that stitch. Cute! I’ll get a pic and a “quickie pattern” (x inches of this, x inches of that, then decreases) up tomorrow.

This single-strand yarn—70% wool, 30% soy, 110 yards per 80-gram a skein—knits like a wool, but has a glossiness to its finish that must be credited to the soy. In fact, this yarn was slick enough that it took a few rounds to get used to working with it on my Addi Turbos. If I’d had wood circulars in the right size, I would have swtiched to them. This shine gives depth to the colors and invites petting. The color transitions are crisp, but not abrupt, no muddly spots between shades. The striping came out beautifully on the hats. I knit them both 80 stitches around and got stripes that averaged 1/2-3/4 of an inch in width. I’ll definitly be using this yarn in the furture and will keep my eyes peeled, in case it ever goes on sale at Michael’s (do let me know if you spot it anywhere at bargain prices).

For the record, Sparky has also given it his seal of approval. I wound the leftover yarn from the second hat into a little ball for him, and he carried it about in his jaws, prancing like a circus pony. He has become quite good about only playing with the yarn I give him, despite his early stash-weasel tendencies, so I like to allow him a bit of fun now and then.

P.S. Last night as I fell asleep, I was thinking of turning some of my cotton washrag yarn into placemats. What do you think?

The Evil that is Little Knits

OK—I don’t really mean it about the evil thing. They’re perfectly lovely. They’re more than lovely. It’s all really a matter of my inability to exercise any kind of self control.

Yesterday I was fantasizing about the Origami Cardigan. Today, I started fantasizing about yarns to knit it in. And, wouldn’t you know it, waiting for me among my email was a note from Little Knits about their current sale on cotton yarns. So, I clicked on the link. Now, none of the cottons waved its fibery little hands at me and called out “Origami Cardigan,” but over on the left nav bar a little link reading “Atacama Alpaca—50-55% Off Sale” was signalling at me like a kitten trying to initiate play (chirp! chirp! paw wave. roll. chirp! blinky-blink.). Cut to the chase: depending on the whim of UPS, I’ll soon be the owner of enough—more than enough—alpaca (in a lovely variegated green shade) to knit up an Origami Cardigan of my very own.

No. Self. Discipline. At. All. Yep, that would be me.

P.S. The Little Knits email also announced that their biggest Noro sale ever will begin next Wednesday. I’m currently doing a textbook review for Sage Publishing, and that money’s going to be spent before it even crosses my palm.

Imagining Origami—and Philately

The new issue of Interweave Knits was waiting for me when I got home from Melissa’s yesterday. I am fantasizing about knitting this cardigan.
orange cardigan and model
• obviously comfy
• can be worn loosely or tightly depending on the weather
• interesting enough that it could work as a wardrobe staple for years (I think)
• v-neck (my most flattering neckline)

• not quite sure I understand how to put the pieces together (but I imagine I could figure that out once they’re knit up)
• 1200± yards of worsted weight yarn
• big chunks of stockingette
• the would-it-work-with-my-short-roundish-figure? question.

Of course, the fact that the sample is knit in orange doesn’t hurt—as far as I’m concerned, orange has always been the new black. It would have lovely drape in a bamboo yarn, but buying that kind of yardage could break the bank.

Any opinions?

And in breaking news…
” In 2007, the U.S. Postal Service will warm up for the holidays by issuing Holiday Knits, four stamps featuring classic winter-time imagery designed and machine knitted by nationally known illustrator Nancy Stahl. These beautiful stamps consist of a dignified stag, a snow-dappled evergreen tree, a perky snowman sporting a top hat, and a whimsical teddy bear.

“In recent years, knitting has become quite popular again, both in the United States and internationally. Inspired by traditional Norwegian sweaters and knitted Christmas stockings, Stahl decided on ‘something cozy’ for this year’s holiday stamp issuance. She used a computer software program to draw her original designs and convert them to stitches and rows. Then she downloaded the information to an electronic knitting machine and used it to knit her creations. The machine’s smaller stitch gauge didn’t provide quite the effect Stahl was hoping to achieve. So she transferred the designs onto punch cards and used a different knitting machine that works something like an old Jacquard loom and has a larger stitch gauge. Stahl scanned the finished pieces into her computer and retouched the photographic images to ensure that all the stitches aligned properly. The result is a set of four colorful and “cozy” stamps that will add an extra touch of warmth to seasonal correspondence.”

Holiday knitting stamps, for 2007

Now how about some handknits for next year?

Super Model

Here’s my little friend Boaz, who will be modeling a pattern I have coming out in MagKnits. Keep an eye peeled for him—and the pattern.
Boaz loves trees and the Lorax!
I’ve known him from birth and have the pleasure of spending time with him almost every week. Lucky me!

The Clementine shawl continues apace. I got a few rows done during a concerrt Melissa and I attended last night that featured Jordi Savall, Pierre Hantaï, and Xavier Diaz. (Audio clips available at the “concert” link.) We’ve been big Savall fans for a good while now, but Diaz was new for us—and a revelation. I am not, frankly, a guitar music kind of gal, even when it’s 17th Century guitar, but Diaz won me over in seconds and had me grinning from ear to ear: such life, such speed, such range!

Yarn Notes

The Tamalpais Hats (patterns in 4/28 entry) gave me a chance to dig into my stash to use some old favorites and try out some new yarns as well. Here are a few of my not-necessarily-systematic observations.

Louisa Harding’s Kimono Angora: 70% angora, 25% wool, 5% nylon, 124 yards per 25 gram ball. This yarn has that typical-of-angoras tendency to release little bits of fluff, so knitting with it can feel a bit like sitting in a field of dandilions on a breezy day (and the fluff is predominantly white, even though the yarn is variegated), but for me its softness definitely counterbalanced that shedding. I was a bit nervous about yardage, since the Louisa Harding Fauve I’ve used in the past seems significantly short of its stated yardage, but had no such problems. The ball band recommends size 6 needles; I actually used size 7 and had satisfactory results. Over time, I’m not sure how well garments knitted in this yarn will hold their shape. The angora definitely has less bounce than wool, so there’s no “rebound” to it. Once you stretch a piece out, it stays stretched. As you can see if you look at the hat I knit up, this yarn doesn’t show stitches well, both because of the variegation and the fuzziness. Would I knit with this yarn again? Yes, but I would choose a very simply project, with the colorway as a focus, rather than the stitches. I don’t know how well they would wear, but I could imagine a very simple, decadent pair of padding-about-the-house slipper-socks made from this yarn or perhaps wrist warmers (which would probably hold up better). At the moment Webs has it for $5.95 a ball (original price $10.95), which makes for a nice opportunity to play with luxury yarn without breaking the bank.

Rowanspun Aran: 100% wool, 219 yards per 100 gram ball. If this yarn were a breakfast cereal, it would be muesli. Despite being stranded, it has a cushy, one-strand feel to it (almost roving-like, if that makes any sense) and much more body that other wools of this weight, such as Knit Picks’s Wool of the Andes. This yarn really comes to life on the needles. The tweedy bits start to sparkle as a piece is knit up, and individual stitches stand out. With great yardage, this yarn deserves a place as a staple in any stash.

Debbie Bliss Merino DK: Heaven! This yarn is a revelation. Yes, it costs significantly more than, say, a DK-weight wool from Knit Picks, but the moment you touch it, you’ll know why. Soft, soft, soft. Soft like Malabrigo, but stranded and with a much more consistent gauge. I can’t remember where I got his yarn (I’m sure I picked it up because of the yellow-green color, which is a favorite of mine), but I know I’ll be buying more when I come across it again. If you look at the picture of the hat I knit in this yarn (Tamalpais v.3.0), which was comprised almost entirely of moss stitch, you’ll see the yarn’s wonderful stitch definition. This would be a great yarn for cables or textured stitches—and your fingers will love every minute of working with it. If you’re in the mood to do something nice for yourself, pick up a few skeins. You’ll have fun just petting them while you decide on the right project.

Knit Picks’ Wool of the Andes, Merino Style, and Shine Sport: These are my “doodling yarns.” I order then a dozen or so skeins at a time, two each of several colors. They’re cheap enough that I feel no guilt throwing out a truly disasterous experiment, which lets me pursue even my wilder ideas worry-free. And when an experiment lands somewhere between disaster and success, I can frog this yarn a few times and reknit it without the final project coming out too shabby. In theory, the Wool of the Andes and Merino Style shouldn’t work together in a single piece, as they’re different weights, but I didn’t have any problem switching from one to the other on the hat (Tamalpais v. 2.0). I would probably hesitate to work up a big project in Merino Style using size 7 needles, but the top of the hat isn’t noticeably looser than its body, despite the change of yarns. I love the silky feeling of Shine Sport (which also comes in a worsted weight). A lot of cotton yarns seem to have a dull or matte finish, but this yarn definitely deserves the “shine” in its name. It is harder to work with than a wool, as any cotton yarn is, so I do notice my hands growing tired when I work with it, and I take more frequent breaks. Bottom Line: If you like designing, these are great yarns for your “rough drafts” that let you save the really good stuff for a final project that’s knit up once you’ve worked out all the glitches.

Another Way to Bust Your Stash

Let me share a photo with you.
Hummingbird  nest in the magnolia tree.
Melissa took this shot of a hummingbird nest in the magnolia tree outside her front door. I’m not sure if that’s a bit of my yarn worked into it—I would like to think it is. On the whole, Melissa’s neighborhood is an industrial wasteland, but look at the miracles that come with even a smattering of trees.


Here’s my Clementine in Malabrigo, looking a bit odd on the needles (but I have great faith in the miracles I’ll be able to work with blocking).
The mysterious pointy object, in progress.
This pattern is a delight to knit—interesting, but simple enough that I can do it while enjoying a baseball game on TV or a book on tape. I’m particularly appreciating the feel it’s giving me for using increases and decreases to shape my finished work. I will never be one to design (let along wear) a knit swimsuit, but if you are so inclined, that teardrop-shaped bit at the end could teach you everything you need to know to make a nicely curved bra cup. (I’ll be waiting for the pics of everyone’s beachwear creations to come rolling in.)

With three balls of Malabrigo, I’ll easily have enough to make a good-sized shawl. I’m planning to use one ball for each half, then to continue knitting both at once from both ends of the third ball, so I get the most out of my yardage.

While walking on a windy beach yesterday, I got the idea to modify the Easy Triangular Shawl pattern into a poncho. I had a rectangualr shawl wrapped around my shoulders and pinned together, so the long ends were keeping my front warm, but I was really wishing for more fabric in the back when the shawl/poncho vision descended. I know the main wave of poncho fever has come and gone, but I haven’t knit one yet, so I will not be forestalled by the possibility of looking “so last year.” I’m guessing I’ll need ten balls of my beloved Soft Delight Extremes, and have put that on my shopping list for when I visit my sister at the end of June.

Last night I gave Sparky a little pompon-type ball that I’d had marinating in catnip for the past several months. You should have seen him go at it! He lunged at that pompon as if it were a particularly trecherous foe and spent a full half hour alternating between killing it and carrying it about in his jaw triumphantly. Spartacus: Mighty Slayer of Puffs!

P.S. On the evil spendthrift front (actually, it was only $11 with shipping from Rosie’s Yarn Cellar), I’ve ordered the Manos Cotton Collection 4 book. I’m in love with the back/white/grey 3/4 sleeve mosaic-stitch jacket. If you click on “View Image Gallery” here, it will be the first picture that pops up. It looks so classy and comfy all at the same time, and the washclothes have gotten me enthusiastic about the joys of mosaic stitches.

The Tamalpais Hats

Here are the four different versions of the Tamalpais Hat, named in honor of our local mountain.
All four Tamalpais Hats
Upper left: v. 1.0. Upper right: v. 3.0. Bottom right: v. 2.0. Bottom Left: v. 4.0. (I realize that the pattern is hard to see in 1.0, but look below for an additional shot of Melissa in the second hat I knit with this pattern.)

As you can see, they vary a bit in size and guage. Since I’m often knitting just to see “what if?,” rather than knitting for a particular person, I don’t worry too much about these when I start a project—just so long as the finished piece falls in a range so that it fits some sort of humanoid. Feel free to adjust yarn weights and needle size to achieve the results you want.

This hat has its genesis in a scarf I knit last fall for my mother that used a pattern from the Big Book of Knitting Stitch Patterns, which alternated 10-row bands of moss stitch with small, interlocking stockingette “teeth.” Version 1.0 remained true to the stitch as written, using one full pattern repeat and then enough moss stitch to build a hat around it. I cast on with a thick-and-thin rib intended to echo and emphasize the “teeth.” Here you see individual shots of the two hats I knit using this pattern:
Multi Tamalpais Hat.
V. 1.0 worked in Louisa Harding Kimono Angora. (I slipped a bit of paper towel inside the hat, so the eyelets show up as white dots if you look closely.)

The Tamalpais Hat looks good in green!
V. 1.1 worked in Rowanspun Aran.

V. 2.0 came about as a result of some making-the-best-of-an-unfortunate-circumstance knitting.
Two-tone brown Tamalpais Hat.
V. 2.0 in KnitPicks Wool of the Andes and KnitPicks Merino Style.

I’d started this hat in Wool of the Andes, but the single skein I had in my chosen color wasn’t quite enough to work up the whole hat. So I frogged it back to the last row before the decreases and changed to Merino Style as I began the decreases. I figured that the best way to make the change look deliberate would be to emphasize it, so I switched to stockingette as well.

By the time I’d finished these hats, I’d decided I wanted to make three changes: first, I wanted to make the “teeth” bigger, so they’d really seem like “mountains”; because I was planning this change, I also wanted to rework the thick-and-thin rib to match the new mountains; finally, I wanted to work the mountains in moss, rather than leaving them in stockingette. And while I was at it, I decided to try reducing the number of moss stich rows I worked before beginning the mountains. This led to v. 3.0
Green Tamalpais Hat.
V. 3.0 worked in Debbie Bliss Merino DK.

Now, this new version pleased me in some ways, but I didn’t like how the mountains looked moved down so close to the ribbing, and, while I liked the moss stitch on the mountains, I started to think the “sky” above the mountains was looking a bit too bumpy. I wanted more contrast between “earth” and “air.” So, I came up with v. 4.0, which moved the mountains back up and switched to stockingette for the top half of the hat. Because Melissa had requested a shorter hat that wouldn’t completely cover her ears and would work for warm-weather wear, I also changed the dimensions to make this hat more of a beanie.
Blue Tamalpais Hat.
V. 4.0 worked in KnitPicks Shine Sport.

This last version of the hat pleased me enough that I was finally able to move on to other projects.

And now for the patterns. In my next post, I’ll include some remarks on the various yarns I used working these up. I’ll also include photos of these hats being modeled by actual human beings when I get the chance.

Abbreviations that Apply to All Patterns
**: Stitch sequences between two asterisks should be repeated until a full round is completed.
K2tog: Knit two stitches together, resulting in a one-stitch decrease.
K3tog: Knit three stitches together, resulting in a two-stitch decrease.
P3tog: Purl three stitches together, resulting in a two-stitch decrease.
Sl 1 K-wise, K2tog, PSSO: Slip one stitch as if knitting. Knit the next two stitches together, then pass the slipped stitch to the left over this stitch, dropping it from the right hand needle, resulting in a two-stitch decrease.
SSK: One at a time, slip two stitches knit-wise onto the right-hand needle. Leaving these stitches on the right-hand needle, insert the left-hand needle into them as well from the opposite side, then knit the two stitches together through the back, resulting in a one-stitch decrease. If you prefer, you can simply K2tog through the back, which will look slightly different, but will work equally well.
YO: Yarn over needle to form a new stitch.

Tamalpais Hat V. 1.0 Pattern
Yarn: One ball of either Louisa Harding Kimono Angora (70% angora, 25% wool, 5% nylon, 124 yards per 25 gram ball) or Rowanspun Aran (100% wool, 219 yards per 100 gram ball) or equivalent.
Needles: 16″ circular U.S. size 7 and five U.S. size 7 double points.
Finished Measurements: Approx. 19″ diameter flat, stretches comfortably to 24″; approx. 9″ from edge to crown following the curve.

Cast on 88 stitches, place marker and close circle.
Work 7 rounds of *P2, K3, P2, K1* rib.

Work ten rounds of moss stitch as follows:
Odds: *K1, P1*
Evens: *P1, K1*

Work one full set of the six-round pattern stitch as follows:
Round 1: *YO, ssk, K3, K2tog, YO, K1*
Rounds 2, 4, and 6: K around
Round 3: *K1, YO, SSK, K1, K2tog, YO, K2*
Round 5: *K2, YO, Sl1 K-wise, K2tog, PSSO, YO, K3*

Continue working in moss stitch, beginning with a *P1, K1* round until the piece measures approx. 6″. End with a *K1, P1* round.

Work decreases as follows, swtiching to double points and starting with 22 stitches each on 4 needles:
Round 1: *(P1, K1) 9 times, P1, K3 tog* (20 stitches remain on each needle)
All even rounds: *K1, P1*
Round 3: *(P1, K1) 4 tims, P3tog, (K1, P1) 4 times, K1* (18 stitches per needle)
Round 5: *(P1, K1) 7 times, P1, K3tog* (16 stitches per needle)
Round 7: *(P1, K1) 3 times, P3tog, (K1, P1) 3 times, K1* (14 stitches per needle)
Round 9: *(P1, K1) 5 times, P1, K3tog* (12 stitches per needle)
Round 11: *(P1, K1) 2 times, P3tog, (K1, P1) 2 times, K1* (10 stitches per needle)
Round 13: *(P1, K1) 3 times, P1, K3tog* (8 stitches per needle)
Round 15: *P1, K1, P3tog, K1, P1, K1* (6 stitches per needle)
Round 17: *P1, K1, P1, K3tog* (4 stitches per needle)
Round 19: *P3tog, K1* (2 stitches per needle)

Cut working end of yarn to 6″ and run counter-clockwise through remaining stitches on needles using yarn needle. Pull tight and draw yarn end to inside of hat. Weave in ends.

Tamalpais Hat v. 2.0 Pattern
Yarn: One ball each KnitPicks Wool of the Andes and KnitPicks Merino Style or equivalents.
Needles: 16″ circular U.S. size 7 and five U.S. size 7 double points.
Size: Approx. 16″ diameter flat, stretches comfortably to 25″ as this is a very elastic rib; approx.9.5″ edge to crown following the curve.

Follow directions for V. 1.0 using wool of the Andes until you are ready to work decreases, then work as follows, changing to Merino Style. Switch to double points when necessary.
Round 1 and all odd rounds through round 17: K around
Round 2: *K9, K2tog*
Round 4: *K8, K2tog*
Round 6: *K7, K2tog*
Round 8: *K6, K2tog*
Round 10: *K5, K2tog*
Round 12: *K4, K2tog*
Round 14: *K3, K2 tog*
Round 16: *K2, K2tog*
Round 18: *K1, K2tog*
Round 19: *K2tog*

Cut working end of yarn to 6″ and run counter-clockwise through remaining stitches on needles using yarn needle. Pull tight and draw yarn end to inside of hat. Weave in ends.

Tamalpais Hat V. 3.0 Pattern
Yarn: One ball Debbie Bliss Merino DK (100% merino wool, 110 meters per 50 gram ball) or equivalent.
Needles: U.S. #6 16″ circular and set of five U.S. size 6 double points.
Size: Approx. 19″ diameter flat, stetches comfortably to 26″ as this is a very elastic rib; approx. 10″ edge to crown following the curve.

Cast on 112 stitches, place marker and close circle.
Work 7 rounds of *P2, K1, P2, K3, P2, K1, P2, K1* rib.

Work six rounds of moss stitch as follows:
Odds: *P1, K1*
Evens: *K1, P1*

Work one full set of the eleven-round pattern stitch as follows:
Round 1: *YO, SSK, (P1, K1) 4 times), P1, K2tog, YO, K1*
Round 2: *K3, (P1, K1) 4 times, K2, P1*
Round 3: *K1, YO, SSK, (K1, P1) 3 times, K1, K2tog, YO, K2*
Round 4: as round 2
Round 5: *P1, K1, YO, (P1, K1) 2 times, P1, K2tog, YO, K1, P1, K1*
Round 6: *K1, P1, K3, P1, K1, P1, K3, P1, K1, P1*
Round 7: *P1, K2, YO, SSK, K1, P1, K1, K2tog, YO, K2, P1, K1*
Round 8: as round 6
Round 9: *(P1, K1) 2 times, YO, SSK, P1, K2tog, YO, (K1, P1) 2 times, P1*
Round 10: *K1, P1) 2 times, K5, (P1, K1) 2 times, P1*
Round 11: *P1, K1, P1, K2, YO, Sl 1 K-wise, K2tog, PSSO, YO, K2, (P1, K1) 2 times*

Work in moss stitch beginning with a *K1, P1* round, until piece measures approx. 6″. End with a *K1, P1* row.

Work decreases as follows, switching to double points when necessary and evenly dividing stitches among four double pointed needles:
Round 1: *(P1, K1) 12 times, P1, K3tog*
Round 2 and all even rounds: *K1, P1*
Round 3: *(P1, K1) 5 times), P1, K3tog, (P1, K1) 6 times*
Round 5: *(P1, K1) 10 times, P1, K3tog*
Round 7: *(P1, K1) 4 times, P1, K3tog, (P1, K1) 5 times*
Round 9: *(P1, K1) 8 times, P1, K3tog*
Round 11: *(P1, K1) 3 times, P1, K3tog, (P1, K1) 4 times*
Round 13: *(P1, K1) 6 times, P1, K3tog*
Round 15: *(P1, K1) 2 times, P1, K3tog, (P1, K1) 3 times*
Round 17: *(P1, K1) 4 times, P1, K3tog*
Round 19: *P1, K1, P1, K3tog, (P1, K1) 2 times*
Round 21: *(P1, K1) 2 times, P1, K3tog*
Round 23: *P1, K3tog, P1, K1*
Round 25: *P1, K3tog*

Cut working end of yarn to 6″ and run counter-clockwise through remaining stitches on needles using yarn needle. Pull tight and draw yarn end to inside of hat. Weave in ends.

Tamalpais Hat V. 4.0 Pattern
Yarn: One ball KnitPicks Shine Sport (60% pima cotton, 40% modal, 110 yards per 50 gram ball) or equivalent.
Needles: U.S. #6 16″ circular and set of five U.S. size 6 double points.
Size: Approx. 19″ diameter flat, stretches comfortable to 24″; approx. 8.5″ edge to crown following the curve.

Cast on 112 stitches, place marker and close circle.
Work 7 rounds of *P2, K1, P2, K3, P2, K1, P2, K1* rib.

Work ten rounds of moss stitch as follows:
Odds: *P1, K1*
Evens: *K1, P1*

Work one full set of the eleven-round pattern stitch as follows:
Round 1: *YO, SSK, (P1, K1) 4 times), P1, K2tog, YO, K1*
Round 2: *K3, (P1, K1) 4 times, K3*
Round 3: *K1, YO, SSK, (K1, P1) 3 times, K1, K2tog, YO, K2*
Round 4: as round 2
Round 5: *K2, YO, SSK, (P1, K1) 2 times, P1, K2tog, YO, K3*
Round 6: *K5, P1, K1, P1, K6*
Round 7: *K3, YO, SSK, K1, P1, K1, K2tog, YO, K4*
Round 8: as round 6
Round 9: *K4, YO, SSK, P1, K2tog, YO, K5*
Round 10: K around
Round 11: *K5, YO, Sl 1 K-wise, K2tog, PSSO, YO, K6*

Knit one round, stopping when seven stitches remain before the marker on the left-hand needle. Place a new marker here, then work decreases as follows, dropping original marker when you reach it. Switch to double points when necessary, dividing stitches evenly among four needles.
Round 1: *K12, K2tog*
Round 2 and all even rounds through round 22: K around
Round 3: *K11, K2tog*
Round 5: *K10, K2tog*
Round 7: *K9, K2tog*
Round 9: *K8, K2tog*
Round 11: *K7, K2tog*
Round 13: *K6, K2tog*
Round 15: *K5, K2tog*
Round 17: *K4, K2tog*
Round 19: *K3, K2tog*
Round 21: *K2, K2tog*
Round 23: *K1, K2tog*
Round 24: *K2tog*

Cut working end of yarn to 6″ and run counter-clockwise through remaining stitches on needles using yarn needle. Pull tight and draw yarn end to inside of hat. Weave in ends.

Shout Out: Props to Mimi for helping me take these pics, then reducing them and emailing them to Melissa, and to Mimi and Dana for long-term loaning me their spare digital camera! Props, too, to Melissa, who does all uploading of pics to this site and povides innumerable support services.


Here are a few quick pics to whet your appetites.

Voila—the Easy Triangular Shawl knit up in my beloved Soft Delight Extremes from Hobby Lobby.
The finished shawl.
Yes, it’s acrylic, but it does amazing things on the needles. I’ll be buying more of it when I head to the midwest this summer to visit my sister. (Like a good knitter, I know to take my largest suitcase, even if I’m only going for a few days. You never know when you’ll run into a great yarn sale.) Obviously, I haven’t blocked the shawl yet and will need to do some tugging to even up the two sides, but isn’t the striping great? The chain-stitch cast off was tedious, but I like the bit of ruffle it adds to the hem. Once I find the right sale, I’m definitely going to be working this pattern up again in Noro. A thousand thanks to CatBookMom for bringing it to my attention.

And now Melissa in version 1.1 of the Tamalpais hat.
The Tamalpais Hat looks good in green!
(A self-portrait, in case you can’t tell.) The patterns for all the variations of this hat will be posted as soon as I can photograph them. This tweedy green hat is knit from the original pattern, which I’d first worked in a variegated yarn. It had come out nicely, but, not surprisingly, the color variation obscured the pattern, so I re-knit the hat in this fiber. In subsequent variations I played with using two yarn colors, mixing moss and stockingette stitches, making the “mountains” larger, and working the mountains in moss stitch. Because I’ve gotten some feedback that my Santa Cruz Hat is a smallish fit, I deliberately made this pattern larger. It produces a hat that’s roomier, without crossing over into beret-dom. Since I won’t see Melissa and her camera this weekend, I’m hoping to importune one of my local friends with a digital camera to help me get the rest of the pics done and uploaded.

The Malabrigo version of the Clementine Shawlette is on the needles and looking lovely, but it will also require significant blocking. I tend to knit garter stitch borders a bit tightly, so the interior pattern balloons out until I give the garter stitches a good stretch. Does anyone else have this problem?