Monday, December 24, 2012

She shoots......she scores!

My thought process started with Jean Moss's book, Sweet Shawlettes which I won back in May;  more specifically, this pattern for a joined hat and scarf:

Empty Circle hat/scarf (photo courtesy Jean Moss)
I thought it looked so warm and toasty and ideal for winter walks or standing outside in the cold somewhere.  I just couldn't think of the right application for it at that time.

Then my lovely friend Denny went to Vienna with the equally lovely Russell, her partner.  She sent me some photos via Facebook whilst they were there - beautiful buildings and market scenes.  In one of the photos it was obviously cold and she commented that she was wearing her 'football gloves'.

That's when I knew where it would be very useful; standing on the terraces watching a football match on a cold evening!  You see Denny is an avid supporter of Everton Football club (I don't hold hold it against her though!!!).  In Liverpool, families are divided between supporters of Liverpool FC and Everton and there is a fierce rivalry.

So the cogs started turning and I searched for some yarn in Everton's colours; a bright royal blue and creamy white.  The yarn had to be easy-care too so the 50% wool/50% acrylic Wendy Mode Chunky fitted the bill nicely.  

I just needed confirmation of 2 things - was the colour more or less OK? Do they actually stand outside when they go to the match?  So I emailed Russell to check it looked OK and told him not to let Den know what I was up too.  The colour was OK and they do stand outside so it was go, go, GO; except that I still had to finish the snowflakes and finding enough of the yarn with the same batch number proved difficult.

They sent us these scrummy chocolates in pretty packaging when they got home - thanks guys, they didn't last long.

As soon as I'd finished the snowflakes it was action-stations on Denny's project.

Tinker supervising
Close-up of the circles across the front of the hat
To get gauge I used the yarn double with 9mm and 8mm needles.  It's actually a lovely yarn to work with; very soft and easy to handle and I can thoroughly recommend it.

You make the 2 scarf sections first but without casting off and then pick up the remaining live stitches as you start the hat section.  The hat is knitted flat and then seamed at the back.

The scarf sections are in moss stitch (one row knit, purl to the end, the next purl, knit to the end) so were really simple and as it was knitted on large needles they grew quickly.  The holes are made by simply casting off stitches on one row and then casting on the same number of stitches on the next row (using the backwards loop method).  I added an extra repeat to the scarf as I felt the ends were just a bit too short with the given length of 32".

The holes are then outlined in the contrast colour using a crochet hook and double crochet stitch.  Each end of the scarf is gathered slightly and then knitted pompoms, stuffed with fibrefill, attached to finish it off nicely.

With all the circles and the lovely football-like pompoms I really can't think of a more appropriate scarf and hat to wear to a football match!

So here I am modelling the finished item (please ignore my favourite comfy, slouchy, old-as-the-hills mohair-mix jumper!)  It is so warm I think I might have to make one for myself for tending the horses on cold days when the wind is gusting.

It is especially warm and toasty around your neck and throat if you wrap it as I have done here - across  the front, round the back with both lengths and then pass one end through one of the holes to secure it.

Happy Christmas Denny (and Russell too of course)  xxx