Have I mentioned my love of big silly hats recently? Hmmm... probably. How about my newest great love, fair isle? Yes? Oh well, here's a pattern that combines them both. Yay!
I normally don't like posting patterns that are too hard because, well, hard patterns are, you know, like, hard to make and stuff. Ahh, but the Sommerfugl was just too much fun not to share, so here it is. Newbies beware, this pattern uses some pretty advanced techniques, so you might not want to try it until you've gained a few experience points. Knitting paladins level 40 and above only. Oh jeeze, my nerdiness is showing. Just ignore that last bit. Hmph! And I don't even play WoW.
Size 8 16" circular needle
Size 8 dpns
Paton's Classic Wool - 5 different colors. I used New Denim, Denim Marl, Worn Denim, Natural Marl, and Winter White.
Cast on 80 stitches (I started with New Denim color).
*note* I don't mind picking up stitches, so I just used the classic knit on cast on method. However, you may want to do a provisional cast on instead so you have a round of live stitches to work with when you knit the hem.
Work in stockinette stitch using the color chart below. You will repeat the pattern chart 5 times each row.
When you are done with the charted pattern work 20 rounds in stockinette (this part will be inside the hat so it doesn't really matter what color it is).
OK, so this is where it gets a little weird. You are going to create a knitted hem.
1. Flip the hat inside out (the stranded purl side will now be facing the outside).
2. Knit one round.
3. Fold the brim so that the right (knit) side is facing out and the cast on edge is next to your newest round and needle.
4. Pick up one cast on stitch and knit it together with the next stitch on your needle. Continue in this manner to end of round.
Voila! A knitted hem!
Continue working in stockinette stitch, following the color chart below. When scooting a tiny number of stitches along your circular needle becomes more maddening than working on the dread double pointed needles (sorry, I just really, really hate dpns. Argggh!) switch over to your dpns.
/ = K2tog (knit two together)
You should end up with five stitches on your needles. Break yarn (leaving a long tail) but do not bind off or sew through the stitches just yet.
Cut about 15 2-foot long pieces of yarn (I like to wrap the yarn around my palm and elbow, then cut the whole lot to get them all about the same length).
Find some sort of object to use as a pin for your braid (I stuck a dpn in a couch cushion). Drape the strings around the pin and braid them up.
Cut a length of yarn about 5-7 feet long. Wrap the yarn around the end of your braid several (hundred!) times to create a neat little ball to fasten off the braid. Trim the end so it looks nice.
Remember those last few stitches I told ya not to bind off? Use your yarn tail to sew through the top of the braid a few times so it won't unravel. Then, sew through the remaining stitches at the top of your hat (removing the dpns as you sew through each live stitch) and sew through the top of the braid several more times to fasten the braid securely to your hat.
Yay! It's finally over! Sommerfugl!