Any knitting worked in the round creates a spiral, each round building on the round below it. The point at which the new round begins is where you can often see a jog when you’re working a piece with a pattern in it, be it stripes or a textured pattern. My usual technique when working a textured pattern is to carefully select where in a stitch pattern the round begins or to modify the number of stitches.

Bibbidi-bobbledi-boo! The hat on the cover of the Noro magazine that came out last year caught my eye and while I felt when I bought the issue that I couldn’t wait to start that hat, it took me months to actually get going. Once I did, it was a quick knit even though bobble rounds have many more stitches than non-bobble rounds. The designer selected the beginning of the round perfectly, no jog to be seen.

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Pattern: Bobble Hat by Holli Yeoh, published in Noro Knitting Magazine, Fall 2012
Yarn: 1.5 skeins Noro Kureyon, 100% wool, color 283
Needles: US size 7 for the ribbing, 8 for the rest
Size: Adult
Started 3/3 and finished 3/9/2013

After working about a third of the pattern, I weighed the Kureyon I had left and realized that even with 2 skeins I would run out before finishing, so I raveled back to the ribbing and changed the bobbles from 7 stitches to 5 stitches. Added bonus: I like the smaller bobbles better and they still provide plenty of shadow and texture.

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The hat could be worn inside-out for the bobble-shy recipient:

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Gads, this baby hat was a pain. Tiny needles, tiny yarn, and I didn’t like the pink and blue. I made it anyway, in the hopes that it has a potential buyer in next week’s craft fair at work. I don’t know what’s up with this Shepherd Sock needing size 1 needles and even then being rather floppy; I’ve used it before and it certainly wasn’t this thin.

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Pattern: own
Yarn: .6 skein Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sock Stripe, 80% wool, 20% nylon, color 603 Baby Stripe
Needles: US size 1
Size: Infant
Started 2/3 and finished 4/8/2013

The long repeats of two alternating colors makes it look to my eyes like the hat has jogs all over the place but it was unavoidable because I had no control over where the colors changed once I decided on a circumference. One of the other circumferences I tried gave me big solid blocks of pink and blue instead of stripes so I made it larger. With this many sort-of jogs, I can accept them as a design feature and not a mistake. I do like the little hem I made with 2×2 rib to help the hat stay on:

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The green hat is an experiment in twisted stitches. It took a few goes to get the stitch count correct to create an adult size hat because the twisted stitch creates a much tighter fabric than plain stockinette.

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Pattern: own
Yarn: 160 yards Artfibers Brie, 80% merino, 20% cashmere, color 6
Needles: US size 4
Size: adult
Started 4/23 and finished 5/9/2013

Once I hit the decreases, I had to shift the beginning of the round by a few stitches several times in order to have a jog-free top. Looks good, doesn’t it?

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The last hat for today is a 2-color 3×3 spiral rib, of which I have made a bunch. The trick to avoiding the jog, and also to not having to worry at all where the round begins or ends so I can work 3 and 3 without having to adjust at the end of the round, is to work the pattern on one stitch more or fewer than needed. In this case, a multiple of 6 minus 1 to create a left-leaning spiral rib (or plus 1 for right-leaning).

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Pattern: own, 3×3 spiral rib worked on 95 stitches
Yarn: assumed madelinetosh Tosh DK, 100% superwash merino wool, colors Candlewick and Grasshopper, 85 grams total
Needles: US size 7
Size: adult
Started 8/28 and finished 10/19/2013

No idea why this took as long as it did. I guess I kept putting it down to work on other things. Making the top slowed me down a little; I had to go dig up a previously-made spiral rib hat for reference. One of these days I have to write down how I do it so it won’t take me so long next time. This was not the day.

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Today I saw one of the hats I sold last year out in the wild. It’s being worn a year later, hooray!

The MmmYarn studio (ha!) has not turned into a hats-only enterprise. Next post will be hat-free.

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