Twisted rib hat and one of my favourite PNW beach

September 09, 2014

Like most people, I love going to the beach. Days of bright blue sky, warm and soft sand, the sound and smell of the ocean. Despite my paranoia of getting sunburned, I love the feeling of the sun on my skin. The days where finally, for a few hours, I'm not cold. But truth be told, I equally love the foggy, misty, mysterious grey west coast beach days. The trees growing on an angle due to the repeated assault of the strong winds and storms. The light, especially early in the morning, with 50 different shades of grey. I really do mean the colour. Or absence thereof, if you stick to the definition. I will take the beaches, pebbles or sand, all year long, sun or clouds. I am so thankful to live in the beautiful PNW. Of all the beaches I've been to, one particularly stands out: Kalalogh beach on the Olympic Peninsula.

This past weekend we met up with my dear friend Emma and her two lovely pups, Raine and Finn, for our now annual camping weekend at Kalalogh. It was perfect. Well, maybe it could have been a few degrees warmer. But we layered up, Emma with her new knitted hat, me with as much fleece, wool and duvet as I could, plus an extra warm layer of Noodle on my lap, and had a great time. Long walks on the beach, finding little treasures, watching the dogs run and play, relaxing by the campfire, and eating food that somehow always tastes better camping.

The week before our trip had been packed with running errands, seeing friends, packing, working, and not quite enough knitting. I had been planning to make a hat for Emma for a while, to keep her warm and dry(er) on her long dog hikes around Victoria. Since I'm almost always cold, I love wearing a hat camping, and wanted to bring her one for the occasion. I was knitting as fast as I could in the car, fully aware of the added time ribbing takes as opposed to straight knitting/purling. I started the decrease, finally optimistic that I would have finished the hat by the time we got there, when I realized that I had brought 4 #6 DPN, the 5th one being a #8. Doesn't matter I thought, I can make do with 4. I started the decrease, trying to keep track of the details of every row despite the distractions, when I realized that I had somehow dropped 4 stitches. I stared at my work in distress, not sure how I would figure out the knits and purls and decreases, and for a few minutes, gave up. But then we stopped to get coffee, and I felt a little better, figured it out, and finished it in plenty of time. You might not even be able to tell were I fudged my way through those stitches. The hat looks great on Emma, and sure added some warmth to the weekend.

I followed this pattern from Littletheorem, using just a little over one skein of Wool Bam Boo (why, why is it discontinued?). Inspired by some of the comments on Ravelry, here are my adjustments to the pattern: using US size 4 16" circular needles, I casted on 97 stitches, K2tog to join in the round, and worked the rib pattern with 96 stitches for 2". I then changed to US size 6 16" circular needles, K2tog to have 95 stitches, and followed the pattern until the hat measured 7" before following the decrease instructions. It turned out lovely, totally reversible, and I really love the spiral pattern on the top.

On our last day of this fantastic weekend, we found some warmth and sun at Ruby beach, a few miles north, before parting ways, hoping to see each other soon. After all the running around, Noodle slept for 12hrs straight, leaving us with a quiet house, feeling somewhat empty, and missing our friends. 

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