Tuesday, August 28, 2012

First hats for 2012-2013 have arrived at Choctaw Nation!

Here's the message E1 has received about the 18 hats shown you in a recent blog post:

From: Brenda Ivie <------------------------>
To: E <------------------------->
Date: Tue, 28 Aug 2012 12:55:26 +0000
Subject: RE: hats for the children

Dear Ms E---------------,

   We received our first shipment of hats today from Ms D------ B-------, who is from A-----, -----------.  She sent 18 very cute hats.  I am writing her a thank you letter today.

  Thank you so much for putting our program on your list of, I am sure, many, many, things to do.  We will have photos later after the hats have been distributed, as colder weather begins.  It is so gratifying to see how much they love those hats and wear them every chance they get, even if it is not so cold.

  You should see the excitement in my office when we receive a package of hats!  They all want to see each one, and oooh and ahhh over them.  All but one of our office staff are either moms or grandmas, so little children have a special place in their hearts.

   We look forward to seeing more cute hats and I will let you know how many have been received in each one.


Brenda Ivie, Choctaw Nation Head Start

Saturday, August 25, 2012

How can you knit a hat in a day?

When my hands are doing OK, I can knit a hat in just a few hours' time, and even make a hat in a day. I made a hat yesterday, and made another one today. (I'm VERY thankful that my hands are doing OK!)

It's possible to knit a hat in a few hours. The trick is to FIND the few hours. And, once found, make sure you have ALL the tools you'll need for the task.

Here's how I do it:

Take the hat with you EVERYWHERE, including the kids' swimming lessons. (You see T's head by the ladder.)

Even take the hat with you to a restaurant. Just put it some place safe when the food arrives. 

In the category of having the right tools: Knitter's Pride Cubics 16-inch #10 needles, "short needles" --- I can do Magic Loop knitting even with this short needle. The needle is short enough and the cable is flexible enough! Amazing. There are only 16 stitches on the needle at this point of the hat. 

Here's my new head model, sporting the hat finished just after lunch.

Aside - My current favorite hat top finish is paired left and right decreases with a single plain stitch between them. I do them every other row, until only a scant few remain. I draw the remaining yarn through the last stitches twice. This makes a nice X at the top of the hat. I far prefer this to the swirl one gets from regular K2togs.

You can have a head model, too! Check out the price tag. Only $2.99 if you happen to have a Savers, Value Village, or Village Valeurs near you during Halloween season. Yes, I know it's only August... but Halloween's a-comin'. 

newest hat, finished 8/24/12

I don't know what number hat this is, but it is the one I finished last night using Knitter's Pride #10 16" Cubics needles. That's the needle you see dangling from the hat.

You know, the cable on those needles is *so* flexible, that I can do Magic Loop to finish the hat even though the entire needle is only 16" long. I don't know if you can see it by zooming in on the image, but those are the Cubics needles. The square shape offers several advantages that just truly WORK for me. I love them.

The yarn is Ella Rae Classic Print 100% wool from I-don't-know-when. Jimmy Neutron is on the TV in the background.  :-) (I was watching TV with the youngers (T & F). Well, truth be told, they watched it. I darned in ends. F clicked the photo for me.) The hat is a Classic Knit-a-Cap pattern.

I have to count my hats, darn in any remaining ends, and mail them off to the Head Start soon. It's almost time for this year's school session to start. Soon the weather will be turning cool enough for hats.

Once we have 310 hats for the 12-13 school year, we'll start on 310 hats for the 13-14 school year!

Won't have much knitting time today. We're getting some new furniture delivered. Very exciting. We're re-arranging things a wee bit since one has headed off to college.

- E2

Friday, August 24, 2012

Knitter's Pride needles and hooks

I feel like keeping it a secret until at least September, because I hope to enter the contest in August and don't want any competitors.... :-)

But Knitter's Pride --- who makes amazing needles# and crochet hooks% --- is having a contest from now until 10/31. You need to make a 1- to 3-minute video showcasing your love of Knitter's Pride products. It can be needles, hooks, whatever.

Mine's in progress. I'm no video expert! (You already know I'm absolutely no blog expert!) I'm working on the video. I hope and expect to post it by 8/31.

If you want to join the Knitter's Pride contest (in September or October, please - laugh!), all the information you need is here: http://www.knitterspride.com/showyourpride/

If you're not on FaceBook, and don't plan to be*, let me know and I'll tell you how to enter without FaceBook.


# My favorite needles are the Cubics. Gosh, I love the Cubics. I could knit all day with them without pain.

% My favorite crochet hooks are the aluminum ones with the big, soft, ergonomic handles. I really like those.  The Dreamz hooks are very good, too, and come in bigger sizes than the aluminum hooks. If you like to thread crochet with the itty-bitty hooks, #14s and the like, they have those thread crochet hooks with the same big, soft, ergonomic handles.

* Yes, we are an increasingly rare breed every day. I know. Yes, I know that a whole bunch of people want me to join FaceBook. But I can't. I just can't. Sorry.

Hats from Denise!

I'm honored and delighted to show you a picture of the eighteen (!! 18 !!) hats that Denise has lovingly made for the kids and is mailing to Oklahoma promptly!

The delightful textured purple hat in the front right corner is her own pattern, the Amaliya hat. This pattern is available on Ravelry with matching capelet and fingerless gloves. Please see: http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/amaliya-hat

Crochet Basic Roll-Brimmed Hat

From 310 Hats

Worsted weight yarn
I hook (5 mm)

  • Chain 2
  • 6 sc in 2nd chain from hook. Place marker in last stitch.
  • 2 sc in each sc (12). Move marker.
  • (1 sc in first stitch, 2 sc in next stitch), repeat around (18 sc). Move marker.
  • (2 sc in each of first 2 sts, 2 sc in next stitch), repeat around (24 sc). Move marker.
  • (3 sc in ea of first 3 sts, 2 sc in next stitch), repeat around (30 sc). Move marker.
  • Continue in this manner for 13 or 14 rounds (increasing the number of scs before the increase by 1 each round) until your radius is about 3", diameter about 6", and circumference about 18". (78 scs or 84 scs). This should make a nice flat disc, which is the hat top.
  • Work even without increasing. It will start making a bowl shape. Continue even until the depth is about 6". It needs to be long enough and and big enough around to cover a Kindergarten-age child's head and ears.
  • To create a rolled brim, increase the stitches by 50%: (1 sc, 2 sc in next stitch) repeat around.
  • Work a few rounds even.
  • Slip stitch around to give a nice tight, neat edge.
  • Cut yarn. Work in ends.
  • If the hat is too "airy", you can weave colored yarns through the stitch spaces. Colored yarns will be very decorative.