Sunday, 4 November 2012

A Mystery Hat with Spoiler alert!

As this is nominally a knitting blog I thought it was probably time I included a little bit of knitting. One of the ways that the online knitting entertains itself is to organise occasional mystery pattern knitalongs. These consist of a designer issuing a pattern in instalments with the participants knitting each instalment without knowing what the finished article is going to look like.This is something of an act of faith so it helps if the designer concerned has a good track record.
 
The name of Ruth Paisley, aka Woolly Wormhead is synonymous with good quality hat designs so when she announced her annual Mystery Hat Knitalong it was hard to resist. I need to mention at this point that if anyone is participating and doesn't want to see spoilers (ie photos of a finished clue) please don't scroll down further.
 
 The first challenge was yarn choice. The instructions called for a sport weight which for us English girls sits somewhere between a 4ply and a DK. The yarn that I chose is Well Manor Farm Gotland Lambswool 2ply in a mossy green achieved by over dyeing naturally coloured grey yarn with yellow. As you can see, my photography skills were not up to getting a consistent representation of this complex colour but you get the general idea.


And here is Clue 1, the brim completed. I had never knit with Gotland before and having once unsuccessfully tried to spin it I was worried that it would have too much of a hairy halo but in fact knitted up very nicely. It doesn't have as much bounce as a merino so I knitted the largest size to ensure a fit.

There was one other thing that persuaded me to join this Knitalong - the need for a button to sit on the brim overlap. Now as knitters we often discuss the size of our yarn stashes but many of us have little 'sub stashes' of related items of haberdashery. Some people have fine collections of beads. Some of us have a weakness for buttons so it was a real pleasure to rummage through my button tin in search of the perfect button. The trouble is, sometimes it's a bit difficult to choose.

I have made a shortlist.

 This is a hand painted wooden button.


 This is Bakelite with a mother of pearl centre. It's hard to do it justice in a photograph.


 Bakelite again. This is a really tactile button.

 
This is probably the most sophisticated piece with a real art deco feel.

I think I will probably wait until the final shape of the hat is revealed before choosing my button but it has been a lot of fun. At the moment I'm leaning towards the brown and red wooden one. What do you think?

14 comments:

Paula said...

Number 2 or 3 I think.

RooKnits said...

Number 3 for me. I cast on tonight but fear my button stash may not be as forthcoming as yours!

RooKnits said...

Number 3 for me. I cast on tonight but fear my button stash may not be as forthcoming as yours!

Susan aka paintermom said...

I like the last one best. I agree, however, that the final shape of the hat should determine your choice. Beautiful yarn!

Mully Nex said...

Number 2 for me! Though I love 3 and 4 too

Sally said...

2 or 3!!!

diagon said...

tactile bakerlite... those two words can never be wrong!

skipseagirl said...

difficult to say for certain not knowing the overall style of the finished hat, but I would personally plump for number two or three (not helpful, I realise - sorry!)

Jeanine said...

Love the tactile bakelite!

littlelixie said...

For me it's one of the last two. You're right about needing to see the shape of the whole hat though. Missed you Sunday!

franney said...

Oh, i think any of them will look great but i do like the painted wood one and the last one, that shape is lovely <3

Elizabeth said...

#2 for sure, though #3 is just as nice. Not #1 at all!

MaryUYSEG said...

I love them all, no surprise there, but would wait for FO to decide.

jecadebu said...

Ordinarily spoilers are not good, but I am so behind and this band is taking forever when I thought I would whip it off in a couple of Montalbano episodes. Seeing how great the finished band looks has given me inspiration to finish those last few inches today so I can finally open up instruction door 2.