A warm knitted vest like this is the best thing in winter. It can be worn under a jacket, if necessary, and really protects against the cold. Marjorie spun the wool for this and it is all natural colour and then she knitted it. It has a country look and would just as nice with a skirt as pants and a warm scarf would complete the outfit. We likes it because it was so soft. We don’t like scratchy wool and we don’t like the feel of harsh fibres which is why we often spin alpaca. Spinning the wool means you can select the right fleece so you get a really soft texture into the wool you spin. Marjorie’s vest is a classic piece and we loved it.
We had some lovely hats again this week and ones which made us think . Top left is Marina’s spun wool beanie which was cosy and warm . She’d actually used the pattern from Christine’s tubular socks because she thought it would work well on a beanie and it does. It makes it warmer than if you knitted it flat and it also gives it a bit of a life visually. She then made another beanie, on the right, using the same pattern but using her spun wool batts plied with cotton. It looks quite different from the other one even though it is the same pattern. Both of the beanies look comfortable.
Underneath are Hilary’s two berets from her spun wool. The first one , to the left, has some soft green at the edge and then the bright colours in the middle. The second one is just such a glorious riot of green and other colours. Like Marjories’ beret last week it is a celebration of colour. Both of these berets are cheerful and guaranteed to beat the winter blues. Colour therapy works.
There were some nice hats this week. You would never be lost in Hilary’s luminescent green beanie. Beautifully spun, eye catching green which would make you a stand out. the cables on the hat give it visual interest and a professional finish. Jan’s autumn colours slouch beanie is lovely. It is cosy. The colours are rich and warm and it just makes you want to wear it. The double , folded edge at the boarder makes it looks really neat. Then there’s Marjorie’es psychedelic beret. She bought the unspun colourway in Nimbin and has since spun and now knitted it up. The loud colours are fun and this would be a very cheerful beret to wear on a cold winter’s day. Sometimes you jsut have to make a colour statement with your accessories.
Winter is coming so hats, beanies and berets will be on our needles , hooks and minds now. Cathy knitted her first beret in her own spun wool and alpaca and is really pleased with the result even though it had started out badly. The pattern she used just looked and felt all wrong and so she took a leaf out of Maria’s book and just unpicked what she didn’t like. That left her with the band. She then looked at various beret patterns and worked out a way of increasing and decreasing. She was knitting and purling as she felt like it so you can do the same. This is what she did:
Round needles/dpns 3.75 and 5.00
8 ply or equivalent yarn
Using 3.75 needles cast on 102 stitches.
Purl 3 , knit one for the next rounds until you have knitted 5cm. Last stitch should be knit. Make sure you mark the first stitch.
Change to 5.00 needles and continue with the purl 3 knit one pattern for another 5cm.
The band is now 10cm wide.
Decide whether you want to knit or purl the next round. Cathy purled it.
Increase round:Knit or purl 5 stitches, increase into the next one. Knit or purl 5 stitches , increase into the next one. Continue like this until the end of the round.
Knit or purl the next row.
Now do the opposite. If it was a knit row then purl it. If it was a purl row then knit it.
Repeat the increase round.
Now you can carry on as you please until your work measures 18cm.
Decrease row: K2 tog , knit 10 stitches, slip one stitch, knit one. Pass slip stitch over. Continue with this until the end of the round.
Purl or knit next round
K2 tog , knit 9 stitches, slip one stitch, knit one. Pass slip stitch over. Continue with this until the end of the round.
Purl or knit next round
K2 tog , knit 8 stitches, slip one stitch, knit one. Pass slip stitch over. Continue with this until the end of the round.
Do this decreasing until you get to knit two stitches before the slip stitch.
Knit or purl one row . Break yarn but leave a tail. Thread a needle though with the tail of wool and pull stit
ches tight and sew securely for the top of the beret.