I'm delving a little more into the Ouroboros stitch and sharing a slouch hat, which could be striped or one-color.
Slouchy Ouroboros Hat
"And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born? "
- from The Second Coming by William Butler Yeats
OK, so that's a bit overdramatic. I just wanted an excuse to use that.
To non-knitting muggles, a "slouch" hat is actually closer in shape to what most Americans would consider to be a cowboy hat. To knitters and crocheters, it's more of an overgrown beret, but it can also be in the shape of a stocking cap. I have no explanation for this variety of uses of the word, but I do know I struggled a bit to figure out what my niece was talking about when she said she wanted "a hat, that's kind of big, you know, in the back, but not a beret."
So, I experimented a bit, and now I'm sharing the results with you. I played with my Ouroboros stitch and "gnawed" at the problem, as Elizabeth Zimmerman would say. First, I arrived at my crown shaping, and discovered I had run out of yarn. Just plain run out. No one in my town stocks that colorway, much less the particular dye lot, and I was impatient to continue, so I bought a very similar yarn in the same weight made by the same company in black.
Yummy Yummy Yarn, My Final Fail and Many Many Photos
I do want to rave a bit about the yarn. Cascade 220, how do I love thee? It's a generous amount of yarn, very good quality, not too expensive, but holds up to wear. Also, it's squishy and yummy, especially if you knit it in a deeply textured stitch. My sister gave me a partial skein of Cascade 220 Quatro, which is very slightly variegated and very completely gorgeous. I knit it all up and then had to tear a lot of it out and add stripes in black. I was annoyed when I had to do it, but I'm glad I did because it forced me to experiment with Ouroboros in horizontal stripes. It turns out that the row of twisted stitches hides the purl bumps caused by the color change. It looks so good, I could have planned it that way.
Oh, and, FAIL #2, I worked on this kind of obnoxious, carrying-the-pattern-through-the-crown-decreases thing and it was shambling horror. So, I tore it back and just made an 8-stitch decrease every round. I think I was anxious to get it over with and I also felt it should draw in a bit on the top. It went quickly and I think it looks very nice. A smoother ending would not go as well with the overall pattern stitch.
I went a little overboard with the photos of this hat and stitch, so I will spare you a bit and only put a few with this story and the pattern. The rest you can see in a photo gallery, which is linked to on the upper-right-hand side of this blog entry.
PDFs of Patterns
I have had a few messages and a somewhat frantic phone call about finding the patterns on our website. I use PDFs for the patterns because that way I can include photos and make sure the formatting makes sense. They are small, portable files and they are designed to print easily, unlike most web pages.
PDFs of all of our patterns are embedded on the right side of the show to which they are attached. The link is kind of small and, if you don't know what a PDF is, that is pretty confusing. So, I'm making two changes. I'm going to include a link to the PDF for the pattern in the "links" section of each show. I'm also going to go back and update all of the links on the Crafty Living Patterns page. They will still be organized by craft, but they will be alphabetical and will point directly to the PDF for the pattern. This may take me a little while, because there are a lot of patterns, but I will finish it sooner or later.
This week's chat is between my co-conspirator, Joyce McCartney, and Melissa of Green Chick Designs.
Video explaining rounds 1 and 3 of the Ouroboros pattern stitch
If you are having trouble using PDFs, you can download the reader for free.
Photo Gallery of more photos of the Slouchy Ouroboros Hat and Ouroboros Stitch