Variegated Fair Isle Hat Inspiration

A few days ago I posted about deconstructing my Dream Shrug because I didn’t really where it and had an idea for a new project for it. And, I think it’s about time for me to tackle a new knitting technique: Fair Isle Knitting. I think an intricately knit fair isle hat with my Noro yarn would look pretty cool, so I’ve been gathering some inspiration before choosing a pattern.

#1 Floppy Fair Isle Hat – Very Bohemian, very trendy. I’m really leaning towards a floppy beret style hat.

#2 Faux Fair Isle Hat – This beanie has a very intricate looking design that is heightened by a variegated yarn.

#3 Taos Slouch Hat – This is technically not Fair Isle or any kind of stranded knitting, but I think the color work would still look pretty cool.

#4 Fairly Fair Isle Hat – Although the picture shows just two colors I think this pattern would be lovely in a variegated color way.

#5 Blumme Beanie – Knitted with not just one, but two variegated yarns adds excitement to this pattern.

#6 Three Tams – I love the simple white yarn as the main color with the variegated yarn being an accent.

#7 Fair Isle Hat #6209 – I’m in love with the rainbow variegated yarn in this picture. Again, white main color and variegated contrasting color: thumbs up. Plus a pompom!

#8 Little Fair Isle Hat – This is a baby hat pattern, but I’m a sucker for anything from Purl Soho. I love how the pattern looks like little leaves or trees.

#9 Fair Isle Ice Cap – Another one in two colors that would be amazing in variegated yarns.

I’m completely in love with the white-based hats, but for my personal project I think I’d end up using either a beige or brown as my main color since I don’t have any white yarn on hand and it’d fit with my Noro colors. I also really like the minimalistic, simple designs. I feel like they’d really do the best job of emphasizing the variegated yarn without looking like a hot mess of colors. What do you think? And do you know of any other patterns that I should know about?

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One Woman’s Trash Is a Thrifty Woman’s Treasure

Sometime over Thanksgiving break (I know this post has been a long time coming) my brother dragged me along to Goodwill to do some thrift shopping. Normally, I’d be all out but I had just bought a bunch of new clothes and wanted to clean out my wardrobe before buying anything else, but I found something I could not pass up.

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This vintage sweater is long enough to wear as a dress. I love the bow color work. It’s totally adorable! There were only two small problems. Two holes in the underarm seams, one on each side. I didn’t find them until I had made my purchase and sadly Goodwill changed their return policy so I couldn’t get refunded. I took it since it was only $5 and figured I could find a way to mend the two holes. I ment to do it once I returned to school from Thanksgiving break but it took all the way until now, after Winter break for me to get around to it.

This video tutorial is so helpful. Add it to your favorites or bookmark it for future reference! The results are amazing easy enough even for a newbie sewer like me.

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I didn’t have navy blue thread but black worked just fine.

before and after small hole

The smaller hole. It was barely noticeable so this was a pretty easy fix.

before and after big hole

The bigger hole. The method worked like magic!

The method works similar to the mattress stitch used for invisible seaming of knits. Of course, it’s not perfect but it’s as great as anything. Especially because of the location of the holes, I didn’t really care what it looked like but this method is definitely usably for more obvious holes.

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So here I have a perfectly functional, cute sweater dress! I can’t wait to wear it after I wash it. There are two lessons to be learned here: 1) Always check your purchases when buying second hand and 2) If there’s a ruined garment, there’s a thrifty girl to fix it.

A Sweater For Myself: Cropped Boatneck Sweater

Edit: You can now find the pattern here!

Over the summer I bought a whole bunch of yarn on clearance at Michael’s with the intention of making myself a sweater. At that time I had never made a sweater before and for all you knitters out there, you must have some understanding at how some large project like a sweater might be a little intimidating, especially if it’s you’re first of its kind. I wrote up this inspiration post and started my journey on finding the perfect pattern. As it turned out, I had to do a little improvising like a lot of my knitting because for some reason, me and knitting patterns aren’t really close friends. We hang out every once in a while but I like to go my own ways a lot of the time.

I ended up choosing the pattern for the boatneck sweater in my vintage Vogue Knitting, however, I didn’t have enough yarn and since the yarn I bought was in clearance, there was no way of knowing that there would be any of the same kind left. Lesson #1: Pick a pattern before your yarn (and needles, too) if you want to make something exactly as it says in the pattern. Otherwise you end up improvising and modifying like I always do.

So I had 3 skeins of the sparkly, beige yarn. My first thought was to knit it on bigger needles for it to knit up quicker and to use less yarn. Now I had to modify the pattern. The cool thing was that this Vogue Knitting is full of modular sweater patterns, which means you take your measurements and fill in the number for a perfect fit. I had to do one of my most often skipped steps of knitting and measure my gauge. The details are very fuzzy now, since I fixed the pattern over the summer, but somehow I went from there and decided that with my gauge, following the Children’s size (for stitches) rather than Women’s would make for a sweater that fit. And since I still wouldn’t have enough yarn, I decided to make a cropped sweater rather than a full length sweater and I had the option of either going 3/4 sleeve or full sleeve depending on how much yarn I had by the time I got to the sleeves. I was aiming for an oversized sweater, but when you improvise, you have to compromise. And it worked out, thankfully! Luckily, I was able to find the same yarn when I went to a different Michael’s to buy some other things and bought another skein so I was able to do full sleeves.

So I started the sweater over the summer and got interrupted by one of my high school friends asking me to make her a sweater, band camp, marching band, and school in general. One of the great things was that the newly created knitting club at my university allowed me to have at least one hour every two weeks to just focus on my knitting. And after one long, hectic week last week, I was happy to just sit in my room, relax, watch some TV, and knit. Oh, you know me, party all night long! That led to my sweater update. Now that I was on a roll, I wasn’t stopping. At knitting club last Thursday I finished knitting the last sleeve and went back to my room wove in the ends instead of finishing an essay I still haven’t finished. I blocked it, with the intention of finishing the sweater that night but seaming, my least favorite activity wouldn’t cooperate.

As you can see all it takes is 2 rectangles and 2 trapezoids.

Lesson #2: Mattress stitch is the best stitch ever. It allows for invisible seaming and works like magic. I began seaming my sleeves but I’m not too careful with it so my ends did not match so I undid it and finished my seaming Friday. Here are some photos of the gradual process.

Say hello to my arm because I only have one sleeve sewn on!

Oh hey it’s me again, wearing the completed sweater.

TA-DAH! I’ve garnered some interest for the pattern on my Tumblr when I posted an Instagram of this sweater so I’ll be working on writing an understandable pattern. This is also an exciting new step in my knitting – writing patterns for other people to use!

I can’t wait to wear this sweater! Unfortunately the weather in Delaware has been unpredictable and it has been feeling very un-fall-like lately. Hopefully the weather will cool down and I’ll be able to show you guys this sweater in action.