June’s Boost Your Knitting project and accompanying technique was a beanie-style hat in DK weight yarn, simple in form other than the dip stitches that this month’s accompanying tutorial and learning materials teach.
This has been my first step back into knitting for a while after health issues left me unable to enjoy even gentle crafts or pastimes such as knitting or reading as I had been unable to look down. I was so, so very grateful to have such an immersive and achievable project to encourage me back to my needles.
Off We Go
Anybody who has experienced my knitting in real life or online knows that I do grumble about ribbing. It was only last night that I was laying in bed wondering if future me could get a cheap knitting machine *just* to knit the rib portion of projects. 1×1 rib is perhaps the most useful of all the rib stitches but of course that would have to mean that it is definitely the most tedious.
The fact that I made it past the ribbing section without deciding that, actually, knitting was perhaps not enjoyable to me any more was wholly due to it being my first experience of Fyberspates’ Vivacious DK yarn. What a lovely bounce the yarn has to it, and with just enough of a hint of variegation to keep each stitch standing proud and bring some depth to the miles and miles of knit one, purl one.
Learning How To Tuck Stitch
Performing Apple Swizzle’s tuck stitches involves knitting into a stitch that is not on the left needle, but instead several rows below, and in the case of Apple Swizzle, knitting into that stitch multiple times to produce the charming little clusters of elongated stitches that span multiple rows in the stitch pattern.
Care has to be taken to allow enough yarn into the tuck stitches for the preceding rows to lie flat, which allows the stitches, gathered together in a decrease further on in the stitch pattern, to form little lotus flower-like clusters.
Apple Swizzle was the perfect little knitting aperitif after a long drought. Enough to help me get a feel for my needles, and quick enough to leave me wanting to knit more.
The repeats of the chart seemed to whiz by, and before I knew it I was on to the decreases.
The crown shaping of this hat happens quickly. After 4cm of rib and 48 rounds of the main pattern, the decreases accelerate quickly over just 10 rounds. I thought this might give a slight gather to the top of the hat, but it seems to have blocked into a rounded crown shape with most of the potential gathering offset by the drawing in of the stitch pattern.
I used all of the remaining yarn after knitting a medium sized hat from a 100g skein to make a pompom. I used the largest of the standard size Clover pompom makers (blue) to make an 85mm pompom which I trimmed down slightly to round off the shape.
I’m please with myself for following my own rule of when in doubt: pompom, because I really like the balance of the hat with it’s bobble.
This hat is ready to be put away for golden autumn days. My little boy always ;loves to furnish his own head with a bobble hat as soon as it is cool enough outside, and then very much requires all accompanying members of his expedition party to do the same, so this hat will be in heavy rotation in a few short months.
Apple Swizzle is part of the Boost Your Knitting program series of patterns and techniques to learn on a month-by-month basis, hosted by Arnall-Culliford Knitwear. The accompanying knitalong is available to take part in on Ravelry and kits are available containing all yarns and patterns needed to complete the year of learning.