I’m interrupting my 30 days of knitting posts to write about an actual finished knit. I took a break from sweater purgatory, aka knitting sweater bodies in stockinette, to make my oldest son a hat. I haven’t knit hats for my boys in a very long time; one of my goals for this fall is to knit one for each of them (and maybe the cats & dogs too, so they don’t feel left out).
I asked Brandon, a college freshman, what kind of a hat he wanted and he texted me 2 drawings. Do you know the cartoon character it’s based on?
I have to admit something before I tell you who the hat is based on: I didn’t see the teeth at first. Someone else pointed them out to me and the whole essence of the hat (and Steven’s costume) took a dark turn.
The hat is based on Gir from Invader Zim. Gir is a quirky robot who’s come to earth with Zim, an alien banished to earth to keep him out of his leader’s hair while they do important things. Zim disguises himself as an elementary school kid and Gir as his dog, complete with a dog custume that zips up the front. Brandon has another Gir hat made from fleece that I bought on etsy 6 years ago but I think it’s too small to wear and worn out.
There are a lot of knit, crochet, and fleece Gir hats out there. All of them are cute, like Gir. None of them are vaguely sinister, like the one Brandon drew. So I poked around on Ravelry for some basic hat-with-ear ideas and ended up borrowing elements from several hats and throwing in some elements of my own.
I got the yarn, Buttercream Luxe Craft Soft Knit Solid, on sale at JoAnn. There were other lime green yarns that would have worked, but this is a tube of finely knit nylon jersey fabric and it was more interesting, and softer & smoother, than the other available yarns.
The brim (is it still a brim if it doesn’t flare out? I should check my hat terminology…) of the hat is hemmed to keep it sturdy and eliminate curling altogether. The top seam of the hat is grafted; I could’ve used 3 needle bind off, but I wanted an unbroken transition from front to back. The ears are made by sewing a line to make triangles at the top corners of the hat – easy peasy, not like the short rows I initially envisioned. The black faux seam is slip-stitch crocheted from the inside of the brim around to the front and back of the hat, then to the back inside brim.
The eyes – oh the eyes. What a saga. Brandon picked the eyes out from a selection of eyes I found on etsy; I really didn’t want to make felt eyes and then stitch them to the hat – they would’ve prevented the hat from stretching where they would have been stitched (or glued) on. So he chose the eyes and I ordered the 16mm size because the shop, SteamPunkDream, doesn’t offer button back eyes in any other size. As you can see, 16mm was too small.
The 30mm eyes don’t come with a button back, so I used Modge Podge Dimensional Magic to attach bar pin blanks to the backs. Voilà – now he can take the eyes off before he washes the hat and move them around if he wants.
Now: to write the pattern or to not write the pattern, that is the question. I think Buttercream might be discontinuing the yarn I used, so I’d need to find something else and make another. And get test knitters. I realized the other day that asking for and organizing test knitters is what’s really holding me back from writing the pattern for the Hourglass Scarf. I need to get over that.