Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Knit for Victory Challenge: My entry

I'm coming in just under the wire here for the knit-along over at By Gum By Golly.  The Knit for Victory challenge started before Christmas, but mercifully we have until the end of January to finish up.  I chose a small project that had been floating around in my head for a while, but the story of this simple piece is a bit convoluted so I'll explain.

Two years ago I purchased a fabulous coral-colored coat and made a simple tie-on hat to match.  Details are over at the Hometown Victory Girl blog (here). Well, I've worn that hat to death and decided that I needed more. 

Enter a pair of alpaca gloves from my wonderful husband.  Warm and gorgeous, I decided to make a jacket to match.  So this past Fall I restyled a 1960s wool shift dress into a bell-sleeved jacket (here).  The gloves were great with the jacket, but (you guessed it) I wanted a hat.  Enter this knitting challenge! 

Here was a perfect reason to whip up that cute hat so I dug out my old pattern.  This was a freebie over at Baby Dee's Vintage Patterns.  It is a simple pattern using increase, decrease and the knit stitch.  Easy to adjust to fit your head.

my hokey attempt to pose like the pattern
My version in green matched my alpaca gloves and, indeed, I felt quite proud of myself.  

Until I looked over at the Knit for Victory Flickr group.  Sweaters, capes, berets, lace and Fair Isle fabulousness concocted from endless miles of gorgeous yarn!  My little baby bonnet was suddenly less exciting. 

I had to do something more.  I had to try again.  I did the only thing I could think of...I spun my own yarn.

white from Abner

There was no way I could match up using needles alone.  So I sat down with some white roving from Abner and spun my little heart out.  My new project would again be a tie-on hat, but would be 100% spun by me and worn for doing chores.  It would be done in the Sock Monkey colors of brown, white and red.  A nice whimsical compliment to my red Carhartt jacket.

brown from Gretl (the mama)

After spinning and plying the yarn, I knit the hat and crocheted a scalloped edging.

I employed the Steampunk Rule of Embellishment:  If you think you have done enough, do more.  I used hand-dyed red alpaca for the accent color.  This was not from my sheep, but I did spin it!  I stitched a bit of red along the white scallops.  Then I crocheted a simple red and brown chain to form the loops.  These are tacked in place.  And because I am infatuated with pompoms these days, I worked up a few of those for good measure.  

And finally, a entry that might, just might, stand on its own for the challenge.  

I tried it out today and am happy to report that my ears survived our 7degree temps just fine!  So while this project may not be the period-correct, 1940s, perfectly tailored cardigan that many others chose to do (how I wish I had the talent to do one of those!), it is functional and pretty...and a reflection of my homestead. 


  1. The small added details are amazing! I would never think to add beyond the pattern!

  2. Love it! Especially the pom poms! They jack it up a notch!

  3. fabulous!
    love the pompons and the colors! i will try to copy this in a woven fabric (can´t knit).
    p.s.: can you send me some of that snow please?

  4. I love it. Perhaps you have a future as a published pattern writer?

  5. Spinning your own yarn...OK...that elevates you to legend status. The hat is fabulous.

  6. Love it! Congratulations. I think it's fantastic, and that you spun your own yarn is wonderful.

  7. I love it! And wish I could knit let alone spin my own yarn!?! Definitely sounds like something a superhuman victory girl would do, lol.


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