I recently completed a Fluid Sockhead Beanie by Karen MaCall. This pattern is a simple stockinette stitch, slightly slouchy beanie with a double brim. It uses a crochet cast on method (this leaves an extra stitch to easily pick up when you're knitting the brim together). The pattern works wonderfully with hand-dyed yarn. Because variegated hand-dyed yarns can have a bit of pooling, I recommend something more subtle, tonal or speckled rather than variegated. I used some of my own hand-dyed OOAK Painter's Palette Sock Yarn.
Being a newish knitter, I'm always a bit intimidated by things I've never tried before (but also eager to learn!). Having never used a crochet cast on before OR knitted my work together to create a double layer (such as in the brim), I was a bit concerned how it'd come out for me. Thankfully Karen put together many photos in the pattern, and explains the instructions very well along with advice on where to find video resources online if you're the kind of person who needs to follow along with a video.
The pattern comes in three sizes; XS, S/M, and L. I knit the medium size hat, and since I didn't have the circular needles available it calls for (size 3, 16"), I went down a needle size and used my size 2 Addi sock rockets. I tend to have a loose gauge anyway, so going down a needle size is something I often do. The hat came out the perfect size for me.
As for the stitches, the entire hat is made in stockinette stitch so it is great for when you'd like some mindless knitting to do. I kept this in my bag to take with me and knit when I'm out and about, since it requires little concentration after you finish the brim. I also loved it for pre-bedtime de-stress knitting. Once I got past the brim, I didn't even use a row marker and just chugged away and it seemed to go much quicker not counting rows.
I was happily surprised with how much yarn I had left after finishing the hat! I had 59 grams of my 100 gram skein leftover, which is enough to make another hat if I wish. This would be a wonderful project for using up those half skeins of sock yarn you probably have laying around (I know I have quite a few), or to make a matching pair for yourself and a friend.
My kitty seems to approve of my hat. Or maybe she just likes looking out the window ignoring me while I'm trying to take photos. I'd say a bit of both, because right after I took these photos she proceeded to take a nap right on my hat.
Summing up, this pattern was thoroughly enjoyable and I am satisfied with my results. Hoping to make another one when I get the chance, one that will be alllll miiiiiine ;)
Thanks for reading!
Amanda J. French
Fiber artist from Louisville, KY. Professionally, I spend my days spinning one of a kind yarns from wool and recycled fibers, and weaving with them. Other hobbies include; yoga, fitness, painting, studying languages, reading, and knitting.