I decided I wanted to make a big "fat" winter hat. I'm using "fat" as a term of art, I'm not sure I could define it if I wanted to. So I started with a trip to the LYS (local yarn shop) and selected a big "fat" yarn... a beautiful eco friendly color that had minimal dying... it came from a brown sheep, and that made me VERY happy!
Buying yarn at the yarn shop means you have to wind it into a skein on your own... so I spent an evening just winding this very delicate "fat" yarn.
See how fat the brown yarn is compared to the blue? The blue is from a skein of worsted weight acrylic yarn I've been using for fingerless mitts.
Next, I found a pattern (I wasn't originally going to design my own pattern). It was a cute pattern, I was going to substitute the pom-pom on top with a tassel, and I was happy with that decision.
I realized that my gauge would be different than in the pattern so I would have to add some additional stitches to make a hat that would hit my head. I did a little math and then cast on to my big fatty size 11 needles. I love knitting in the round, so I went around... and around... and on the third round, something didn't look right... so I went around... and around again, and realized that instead of the ribbed pattern I was looking for, I got a seed stitch.
I counted my stitches... realized I dropped one somewhere, and decided I could do one of two things... tear the hat off the needles, or go with what I had. The seed stitch looked kind of nice, it was easy enough to continue with, and it had that Warren Miller snow boarder feel... so I went with it.
Unfortunately, I've never knitted a hat without strictly following a pattern before. So I made a few miscalculations about when to start tapering the hat for the head (oops), so the proportions look a little funny to me, and the hat has a couple of funny bump-outs.
When I finally finished the hat, it had kind of a cool beanie thing going on... but I wanted earflaps... so I began constructing those.
Now I am one earflap away from completion of a slightly flawed, but very well loved first attempt at hat design :)