FO: Purple & Sparkle Brio-Garter Hat

I’m finishing out the week with another finished object. I finished my second Brio-Garter hat, this time for my cousin Safia. Her birthday is Monday and she’s in town this weekend so hopefully I’ll get pics of her while she’s wearing it.
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You may remember when I made this hat in January. It was my first solo experience with brioche knitting and learning increases and decreases. I love the interesting construction of this hat. You start by making an i-cord and then you pick up stitches from the i-cord and join in the round. The increases and decreases in the hat automatically shape the ear flaps. It’s brilliant! Stephen West is a genius. Since my first version was pretty big I decided to cast on two needle sizes smaller since my cousin has a tiny head. I still think this will be a little bit and slouchy on her but hopefully it’s a good fit.
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I love brioche since it makes everything reversible. This is the side where the sparkly grey Tempting Ewe So Sparkly DK yarn is dominant.
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And then here’s the side where the Madelinetosh Pashmina yarn in Gosia is dominant and look how cute it is when you flip up the ear flaps! Her favorite color is purple so whenever I knit her accessories I try to pick out fun shades of purple yarn to use on her projects. Since I’m going to see her this weekend I want to measure her feet so I can make her these brioche socks! I’ve already got pretty purple and black yarn to make them with, just need to make sure I’m making her the right size.
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And just to round things off, here’s a picture of the girls begging for carrots. LOL Jellybean has to get her annual check up and shots this weekend so whatever I’m doing this weekend I’m going to have a chihuahua attached to my hip that just wants comfort. Have a great weekend everybody!

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FO: Brio-Goodness

Well I finally got around to taking pictures of three finished objects this weekend. Woohoo! So let’s start off all the finished objects posts with my Brio-Garter Hat that I finished what feels like ages ago.
Brio-Garter Hat
I talked about the process of knitting this hat while I was traveling and I have to say, if you’re trying to learn a new technique (2 color brioche, short rows, colorwork…) hats are an easy way to get in a bunch of techniques but on a smaller scale project. That’s always kind of been my go-to way to learn something new. My logic is before I mess up short rows on a sweater, how about I test my skills on a hat? And since I’ve been hit with the 2 color brioche bug I needed something small to work on my technique some more.
Brio-Garter Hat
I also picked this hat because it has ear flaps (although sorry you can’t see them that well in this pic, I didn’t realize they were scrunched up until later).
Brio-Garter Hat
The construction of this hat starts with an i-cord! And then you pick up stitches from the i-cord edge and join in the round. It was so clever and different, I’m always amazed at how the minds of pattern designers really work. I also love that it’s slouchy or fitted depending on how you want to wear it. I never really do a gauge swatch for hats, I always figure for my head if it’s a little big it will be fine and this one definitely blocked out slightly bigger but that aids in how slouchy it looks when I wear the ear flaps over my ears.
Brio-Garter Hat
And when I flip the ear flaps up I kind of feel like Sherlock Holmes. LOL Since it’s brioche the hat is super warm and a little stretchy so it’s a perfect technique for a hat. I’m totally going to make this in other colors, I just pulled two random skeins of one of a kind dyed Madelinetosh Vintage I had in my stash. Now to just figure out what the next color combo will be, maybe rainbow yarn with white?!

Meeting Stephen West – Westknits

Right before I left for my trip for work I signed up for a Stephen West book signing at my local yarn shop, Fibre Space for his new book Westknits Bestknits 2. It was partially why I knit his Brio-Garter Hat, just because I knew I’d meet him. Also one of my early projects that had cables and short rows and I was super proud of in the beginning was his Helm hat pattern (one for my husband and one for myself). It’s still one of my favorites.
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And I must say, he’s just delightful in person. Also I did not wear my Royally Striped cardigan to meet him but he did compliment me on my color choices for my Comfort Fade Cardigan.
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He is as animated and colorful as his designs, which is one of the reasons I really like his patterns. He doesn’t stick to a lot of the knitting norms and encourages you to make it your own and use his patterns as just a foundation to a creative piece. His explanations of his design process were really interesting, I love hearing how designers work. And he said a lot of the reason why he’s doing fading and marbling in his knitting is because he knows a lot of knitters buy 1 or 2 random skeins of yarn and this is an easy way to blend them all together instead of having to have a sweater quantity of a single color.
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And he said one thing I really loved, ‘don’t knit it if you don’t love it, do what you want to do.’ That was really my mantra last year, I only made stuff I really wanted to make when I wanted to make it. And that’s how you end up knitting 27 sweaters in a year.
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I absolutely love this floaty top and can see myself making one as a layering piece to wear all year. But the piece I HAVE to kint…
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His Kanagarullover (you may have seen it on Instagram)!! He brought this sample with him and it is so good and it has a huge kangaroo pocket on the front that I can totally see Jellybean trying to snuggle inside of when I wear it. I told him the kinds of yarn in my stash I was thinking of using and he suggested I add in some non-superwash yarns so it wasn’t as heavy so I used my gift card to pick up some creamy white Woolfolk Tov DK. I surprised myself with a purchase of all white yarn but I figured I’ve got a ton of color and want to mix it up and tone it down a bit. I cannot wait to get started on this one! I have a feeling it will be on my needles sooner rather than later.