Hello you lovely people. How are you all?
I can finally show you a finish! I’m aware it’s been some time, so I’m probably out of practice.
Remember that I hinted about some presents I was making in this post? Well I can now finally tell you about them. In my defence, they’ve been ready and wrapped for a long time, but I’ve only just handed them over to the friend in question.
I need to sort out proper names for everyone so I can reference them properly. This one is one of my closest and oldest friends and we quite often refer to ourselves as husband and wife. Whoever is the more mentally stable and is looking after the other one usually gets the husband label. So for the purposes of putting her out into the blogging world, she’ll now be referred to as The Gwr, which is Welsh for husband. Not of course, to be confused with Himself who has the unfortunate task of living with me permanently. At least The Gwr can give me back when she’s sick of me.
Right. All still with me? Good. I’m glad we’ve got that sorted.
As I mentioned, The Gwr and I go way back to primary school, where our mothers were the number one and number two in the governors. We lived around the corner from each other so while they organised.. things(?), we were thrown together and told to keep each other occupied. That was 21 years ago (eak!) and I’m delighted to say we’re still going strong.
The Gwr is the ultimate master present buyer. You’d hope so after all that time. She gets it spot on. Every time. This of course sets the bar fairly high when I’m looking for things for her. Luckily, she had a request, which made things heaps easier.
I was asked to recreate this much loved hat. As lovely as it is, you can see that it thst it’s a bit bobbled and stretched. This is truly a good example of what happens to knitwear when it’s getting on a bit. Its was starting to get a bit loose on her head I think so wanted to have it like new again. She also said that she liked my hat that I had on – swirly bobble hat – and unusually for her, was being quite indecisive (maybe polite) about what she wanted. I decided to do both, obviously.
Remember when I said that The Mother reminded me of autumnal colours? Well The Gwr reminds me of green and purple. The swirly hat had to be in purple therefore. Again this was using the Stylecraft Special XL in Plum. I was dubious about this colour when I received it, but it came out better than I thought it would. We had a long conversation about how we were anti bobbles, so I made sure to leave it unadorned.
The swirl also came out a lot better on this one than the last one. Maybe it’s because I’m finally purling in the right way? Perhaps. On the plus side, this means that I have more XL to add to my trio of hats collection. It’ll get finished one day…
The green hat was a bit more of a labour of love. While DK is my go to yarn for crocheting, I cant stand to use it for knitting. Weird isn’t it. It’s just too small for me. It takes so long to do anything. So safe to say I was a bit apprehensive about how long it would take.
I have to show you this picture of my needles. Yes, I treated myself to rosewood 3.5mms. I thought it would make the process a bit nicer. And oh my goodness it was. I have to show you this picture.
Look at the size difference. It’s comical. Those are my favourite size 10s that I used for the bobble hat Vs the 3.5s that I used for the green hat.
I know how dear this hat was to The Gwr so I wanted to recreate it perfectly. This meant lots of fiddly counting. I studied the pattern until I worked out how many cast on stitches I needed, how many rows I needed and how and when I needed to decrease. Cue next comical picture..
The top one is an exact replica of the pattern of the one below. But again, look at the size difference. When you compare the two together you can really see how worn-to-death the original is. I do love garments like this though. Ones that show how cherished they are. It was lovely to be able to remake it for her.
Lovely, but longwinded. I set off with gusto, so it didn’t actually take too long to work up, but it was so surreal to be working on something that took so long to grow. Saying that, I’ve got a feeling this is where my interest for socks ignited. While it was small, it was nice to see the neat little rows appearing.
The original hat also had an ingenious method of joining. I say ingenious, I really mean that I’d never thought about doing it this way before. It was obviously sewn up together right side to right side for the majority of the hat. But when it came to the section that would be folded up, the join moved to the wrong sides, meaning that there was no ugly seam on the folded up cuff. This is probably very old news to everyone, but I was hugely impressed with the cleverness. Mentally noted so I do this from now on!
As always however, the sewing up took me a while to get round to. I tried to start it while I had the hideous illness, but my brain was just not having any of it. My rows weren’t matching up and I was just getting in a mess. Best to put it to one side until I was more mentally able. Anyway, that day finally arrived! Here’s the finished article.
I always get nervous giving handmade gifts to people, even when they asked for them. Will they like it? Will it be what they expected? Will all that hard work have been wasted? So, I’m very pleased to report that they all went down well. Nice warm happy feeling in stomach again.
I also need to briefly mention the other gift for The Gwr. Before Christmas, we had a crochet teaching session to see if we could get her up and going. She’s a leftie, so a bit more complicated, but not impossible. We got a swatch going and she was doing well! That was where the practice stopped though. She’d initially said that she wanted to learn so she could try this..
I had to then obviously buy it for her. HOWEVER! There were big instructions that it must only be attempted after more practice has happened. Looking at the patterns, they’re not the easiest. Especially not for a beginner. But shes now got something to work towards, so I’m hoping this will spur her on. 🙂
Much love xx