Wednesday, January 29, 2014

MacGyver Would be Proud...If He Knit

Not too long ago, I made a hat.  This one, the Lillehammer hat from YarnZombie.  I used essentially the same colors, but reversed the light and dark and used red instead of the chartreuse-y green.  My version looked like this:

I used three colors of Cascade Superwash DK.  I don't have the color numbers, but it's black, a light gray and red.  My version also started with a provisional cast-on and a 3" hem that is turned to the inside to add another layer of wooly warmth over the ears.  I took out the provisional cast on and did a K2TOG to attach the hem to the hat so I wouldn't have to sew it down later.  (You'll be able to see more of that in a minute.)

So, being the polite gentleman that the recipient is, he put it on and declared it "Perfect!"  And then the cold weather, the dreaded "Arctic Vortex" hit this part of the country.  Now, I love the cold.  My definition of truly cold weather is going outside and taking a deep inhale through the nose only to have your nostrils freeze together.  That's when I start thinking about a hat and zipping up my coat.  It was that cold.  

But the hat did not make an appearance.  I was a bit crushed curious about this, so I asked.  He told me it was just a little too short and didn't quite cover all of his ears, and he didn't like to have cold ears.  

Back to the drawing board.  I didn't want to re-knit the whole thing.  I'm a bit lazy, and I'm trying to cross stuff off of my to-do list, not add finished things back on to it.  So, I channeled MacGyver.

Now, this is where I could give you the long, drawn out version of the story about how a knitting friend and I joke around about being the "MacGyver of Knitting".  By that, we mean finding creative ways to get ourselves out of a knitting nightmare we have managed to get ourselves into.  A weird extra triangle on the edge of your huge entrelac shawl, that you noticed just now but is 4 rows back? Fold it into a triangle & stitch it down.  Nobody will ever know.  Changed the gauge of your project and now the neckline is funny?  Run that sucker through a serger.  It will never show from the front.  Like that.  The problem gets solved and nobody gets hurt.  Soooo--

I snipped the black purl row that was the turning ridge for the hem and put the hem and outside hat stitches each on their own circular needles.

Then I attached a ball of the leftover red yarn and made the hem longer.  When it was long enough, I connected the black yarn, did my purl row to turn it, and then knit a longer ribbing in black.  I couldn't find any of the gray, so the two color rib was eliminated.  I knit the rib longer than the pattern said, and then added enough rows to make the outside length of the hat long enough to cover the deeper hem.  One really long row of kitchener stitch in the black yarn later and VOILA!  

A finished hat that was MacGyvered into submission to keep a pair of tender ear lobes roasty toasty in the cold and...

you can't tell the extra work was done on it unless you look really, really close.  And nobody got hurt in the process.  

While it's a nifty trick to pull off, I really don't want to do that much Kitchener stitch ever again.  

Really.  But I think MacGyver would be proud.  

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