When a Hat Isn’t Just a Hat

I never blogged about this hat last year. I counted it in my 2016 round-up and mentioned it in my March 2016 FO Monthly Round-up.
Ribbed Hat
I didn’t think of it as a major FO but it was made for my ‘little brother’ Travis because he has repeatedly been a guest lecturer for my class. Ten years ago Travis was my graduate assistant when I worked at American University. I left higher ed for a new job in the association world a few months into him working for me but he told me that I was going to be his big sister and I couldn’t get rid of him. Many Thanksgivings together, dinners, happy hours and guest lectures later Travis has solidified himself as a member of my family. He’s the little brother I never knew I needed but love so dearly. So the thing about the hat…he kind of loves it.
Travis and his hat
Every time I see him on Instagram he’s wearing the hat and you guys know whenever someone wears something you make it makes your heart feel good. When I asked him what kind of hat he’d like he sent me a picture of a slouchy ribbed beanie and asked for in a deep red/burgundy shade. I chose the Graham hat pattern (it’s a free one) and used the Mighty Stitch Worsted in Pomegranate so he could wash and dry it without any issue. In January I got a text ‘Can I get this same hat but in black and in gray?‘ Seeing as how he’s my little brother and I ask so much of him and he asks so little of me I said sure, ordered 2 more balls of yarn but just never got the chance to put them on my needles. And then last month he told me he’s moving to NYC for his dream job.
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I quickly picked up the yarn and said I’ve got to get moving. I’m halfway through his gray one. I’m cooking him one last meal on Thursday and I hope to finish it and maybe even a black version too. And every time I pick this hat up I get a wave of sadness at the thought of not meeting him for dinner on a random Tuesday because it’s gorgeous out and we were in his neighborhood. I realize more and more how much knitting is a labor of love for me. I put myself in each stitch. I try to make things with purpose, that I’ve thought of all the details to make sure this knit thing will fit into someone’s life and when they wear it they will think of me. So even though I won’t see Travis as often, I know I’ll still see a little bit of me in his Instagram feed whenever it’s a bit chilly and he needs a hat. It’s kind of like his big sister will always be there to protect him because isn’t that what big sisters are for?

So a hat isn’t always a hat. Sometimes it’s a lot of love. Have a great weekend.

Stitching Status: Bits & Pieces

I’m really happy that it’s Friday. This has been a long week. So I thought I’d share a few things knitting related.
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Currently I’m working on what has to be the softest baby blanket on Earth. A girlfriend of mine is having her second baby in March, a girl this time, and she loves the color combo of lavender and mint. While Knit Picks had Mighty Stitch on sale I picked up some of the bulky weight to whip up a blanket for her. I’m doing alternating blocks of lavender, mint, lavender and then longer blocks of white and then mint, lavender, mint…It’s working out really nicely and I love not having to purl anything. I’m also going to whip up a baby sweater this weekend for another friend’s little boy who will be here in a few weeks!
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Also you can call this the art of peer pressure but I decided to jump in and do a Find Your Fade shawl. Just look at the #findyourfadeshawl hashtag on Instagram and drool over all the lovely shawls. I’m not even a big shawl knitter but I love color possibilities and didn’t want to miss out on the fun. I’m already at my second color, I’m using some stash and some new yarn to give the fade I want (I’m going from highlighter yellow – pictured is madelinetosh Edison Bulb – to a super bright pink with green and blue in the middle). When I get tired with one project I like to have something else small to work on to switch things up and this is a pretty good option.
Steven's Rye Tie
And remember over the holidays I knit 2 Rye ties? Well I finally got a pic of my friend Steven wearing his, isn’t he handsome? He told me he got lots of compliments and that other men at work attempt to take the tie. I didn’t expect men to like the knitted ties as much, who knew they’d be such a popular item?

This weekend should be pretty quiet and low key so I plan to knit and rest. I feel like a cold is coming on and I’m trying my best to not get sick. What plans do you have for the weekend?

FO: NY Giants Sweater

It’s hard to believe that January is almost over and I’m still not finished sharing December’s finished objects! Oh and I’ve completed three sweaters so far in January, so it’s not like I’m slacking.
Ultimate fan sweater
My last sweater of 2016 was for my husband and of course it wasn’t the one he had originally requested. That’s kind of what happens with me and knitting. I knit was gets me excited at the moment. This sweater wasn’t in the plan but I was wearing this sweater:
Color blocked Lesley
My Colorblocked Lesley and I kept thinking about how soft it was that day at work. And when I looked at myself in the mirror I thought if I just replaced the green with red, this would be a perfect NY Giants sweater for Kenny. I asked him if he’d wear a Giants themed sweater and he said of course (mind you this was after the hat I already made him). I still had leftover skeins of Mighty Stitch worsted in blue and white so I decided to whip up the Tea with Bread and Jam sweater (side note: this pattern name makes me think of this book we read a million times when I was a child) and I ordered some red to be the main color of the sweater. The only alternation I made to this pattern was to omit the pockets. I didn’t think he’d care about that little detail.
Giants sweater
I also found on Ebay a large vintage NY Giants patch that I thought would really pull it all together. I don’t know if the patch is authentic but it sure is cool and he loves it on the sweater. Right now it’s on with fabric fusion glue but I plan to hand sew it permanently into place on the chest.
Ultimate fan sweater
The end result was a really happy husband who has another cool NY Giants themed hand knit to add to his collection. And I love the sweater pattern so next I need to make one in a fun color combination for myself. It’s a great casual weekend piece.