woolly pillbox & muff - pattern in progress

when i last went to switzerland to audition, i bought some yarn at a local yarn store - actually, i bought two 100g balls of a swiss handspun pure lambswool yarn, aran weight, with about 100 meters / 109 yards per ball. it was rather stiff and rough, but not overly scratchy and produced a rather stiff fabric with a lot of body. i thought these characteristics would lend themselves well to crochet and since i've been dreaming of making a pillbox hat and matching muff, i whipped out my crochet hook and got to work.

glitterhippos-hat-and-muff-1

glitterhippos-hat-and-muff-2to make your own woolly pillbox hat, you'll need:
about 60 meters / 65 yards of stiff&stubborn aran weight pure wool yarn, i used lewolaine handspun yarn
5mm crochet hook
tapestry needle for weaving in the ends

gauge:
not terribly important, as long as your final measurements are about right
you should be getting a rather dense fabric that will hold its shape well

pattern:
starting chain: chain 6, join with a slip stitch
rnd 1: ch 1, put 1 sc in each chain

from here, you can go either in spirals or rounds that you join with sl st and then ch2 to get to the next round. depending on your tension and yarn, 2 hdc instead of 1 into every other loop should do it - if it curls, do less stitches, if it curves into a bowl, do more, you'll figure it out. for the blue hat, i did rounds.

crochet in the round making a flat disc with hdc set only in the back loops, i did five rounds to have a diameter of 15 cm / 6 inch. i have a smallish head, so i wouldn't recommend going any smaller, i think you could go up to 18 cm / 7 inch or more, depending on head size and volume of hair. =)

when your disc is big enough, its time to turn for the side of the hat. for this, you join with slip stitch, chain 1. now you insert your needle into both loops of the stitch, but back to front, instead of front to back as usual. now, insert your needle into the next stitch as usual, pull up a loop, yo, pull through both loops. yay! you have made your first sc onto the underside of your disc! continue in this manner all round, join with sl st, ch 1. continue in rounds, again crocheting only into the back loop of the stitches, until yor hat ist about 5 cm / 2 inch high. finish off with a round of slip stitches to neaten and reinforce the edge - but don't work your stitches too tight or you'll pull it in. weave in your ends - you're done!

prop your new pillbox hat on your head at a jaunty angle, secure with hairpins if desired. scroll down to the end of the post to see the hat worn.

glitterhippos-hat-and-muff-3to make your own woolly muff, you'll need:
about 140 meters / 153 yards of stiff&stubborn aran weight pure wool yarn for the outer shell, i used lewolaine handspun yarn
about ? meters / ? yards of soft and luscious dk weight yarn for the lining, i used 5/14NM 30:70 cash/wool from ColourMart
5mm crochet hook
3mm dpns or circular knitting needle
stitch marker, cable needle or fifth dpn
tapestry needle for weaving in the ends

gauge:
with aran weight yarn & hook:
with dk weight yarn & needles:

techniques:
cable 2 front (c2f): option one - with a cable needle: slip two stitches purlwise onto the cable needle and let hang to the front. knit two stitches from left needle, the knit the two stitches from the cable needle. continue in pattern.
option two - without a cable needle: leaving the first and second stitch untouched, insert your right needle knitwise into the third and fourth stitch. use the inserted needle to push the first and second stitch off the left needle, also slip off the third and fourth stitch. you now have two "loose live" stitches and two slipped stitches on your right needle. slip the loose live stitches back onto your left needle, being careful not to twist. now slip the two stitches from the right needle back to the left needle and knit across all four stitches. continue in pattern. please see the excellent video at knittinghelp.com (you need to scroll down a little to "decorative stitches")
knit front and back of stitch (kfb): knit into the front leg of the stitch as usual, but leave the stitch on the left needle and knit into the back leg.

for the outer shell:
starting chain: chain 60, join with slip stitch
round 1: ch1, sc in the back of each chain, join with slip stitch
round 2: ch1, sc in each sc, in back loop only, join with slip stitch
repeat round 2 until you have a tube about 38cm / 15inches long, fasten off.

for the inner lining:
cast on 70 stitches and join for knitting in the round, place marker at beginning of round, if you prefer. you can leave a loooooong tail from the cast on and use that for assembly
rounds 1-3: *k4, p1, rep from * all round
rnd 4: *c2f, p1, rep from * all round
rnd 5-8: rep round 1
rnd 9: rep round 4
rnd 10-12: *k4, p1, rep from * all round
rnd 13-16: rep rnds 9-12
rnd 17: rep rnd 4
rnd 18-20: rep rnd 1
rnd 21: *k1, kfb of next two stitches, k1, p1, rep from * all round
rnd 22-34: rep rnd 1
rnd 35: *c3f, p1, rep from * all round
rnd 36-38: rep rnd 1
rnd 39: rep rnd 35
rnd 40-52: rep rnd 1
rnd 53: rep rnd 4
rnd 54-56: rep rnd 1
rnd 57-60: rep rnds 53-56
rnd 61: rep rnd 4
rnd 62-65: rep rnd 1
rnd 66: rep rnd 4
rnd 67-69: rep rnd 1
rnd 70: bind off in pattern, either sew in ends or leave loooong tail for assembly.

you could just make a ribbed tube without the cables, of course, but i like the extra structure and body they produce. plus, the cables pull the fabric in, so it sits a little more snug against your wrists, keeping the cold air out and the warm air in. just the way i like it. =)


assembly:

glitterhippos-hat-and-muff-4

you can sew or crochet the two tubes together, i chose crochet because i think it's easier than sewing and i'm lazy. i used contrasting colour yarn so you can see a bit of the detail here, the main part is not forgetting that the lining tube has to be turned inside out and placed inside the outer tube so that the wrong sides are touching and only right sides are visible. sew or crochet together with the tails you left hanging, same colour yarn or contrasting colour yarn, whichever you prefer. since the inner tube is shorter than the outer tube, you will have to turn the tube the way i'm showing you in the picture above.

glitterhippos-hat-and-muff-5

and that's it, you're done!

and then, wearing it in your paris bedroom and having to have your picture taken before going out into the cold cold night to find some dinner, you can look like this:

glitterhippos-hat-and-muff-6

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i’m a classical singer from vienna and like to relax and unwind (something my boyfriend suggests very strongly) with a little web surfing and crafting. the internet is a magnificent source of inspiration and techniques and i’m hoping to add my share to that in my own little way. you can find me on ravelry and flickr
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