I had so much fun working on this design because I got to work with a sweet little up and coming designer, my wee eight year old Lily. She is so much fun to work with, she has a mountain of ideas and is always super keen to put me to work. Ever since she has been little she has been sketching out her "designs" in my visual diary with the expectation that I would knit them. Most of them are pretty out there and haven't seen the light of day, much to her chagrin. Every now and again she still asks me when I'm going to knit her teepee dress; a design she drew when she was about three! I am such a mean mummy!
This time, I asked her to help me though. She wanted me to knit a couple of beanies for two of her friends' birthdays; two brothers who happen to have their birthdays in the same month. She wanted something that really captured their personalities. One of these brothers you may be familiar with already, his name is Griffin. Remember him? That may give you a bit of an idea of the design brief before us.
We settled on a striped slouch beanie and Lily selected the colours from my 8ply scrap tub. Yes, I have a whole tub of 8ply leftovers that are slowly being transformed into a blanket. Slowly. Then we decided to personalise it and I set Lily the job of designing a duplicate stitch image for each of the beanies. She thought monsters would work and quickly had her sketches organised.
Next with some knitters graph paper she set about creating the duplicate chart pattern. Meanwhile I knitted away.
We decided they were too cute not to share, so the pattern had to be written up. Given that I'd used leftovers to make our beanies, it seemed only fitting that I grade the pattern in a number of different weights so it can be used that way by lots of knitters. I graded it for five different yarn weights; sport/5ply, dk/8ply, worsted/10ply, /heavy worsted/aran and chunky/12ply and five different head sizes; 16", 18", 20", 22" and 24" so it will fit most people from baby size up until a large adult.
Beyond the awesome duplicate charts that come with this pattern, there are a couple of other cool things about it.
It has a little colour bar down the side of the first page of the pattern itself to help you with your colour sequence, I used five colours in both beanies and had fun switching them in and out over the two round stripes.
As I used such short stripes, I also used a jogless stripe technique that is fully detailed in the pattern so that the stripes matched nicely around the circumference of the hats.
One of the other things that is a bit of a pain with stripes is the transition between each stripe in ribbing, in the purl section you get the two different yarns wrapping around each other on the right side. If you're using a thicker stripe, this can be easily disguised by just knitting the first round of each new stripe. Given these were two round stripes, that wasn't going to work so I decided to try and minimise it by making the knit section of the rib slightly thicker. I really quite like a 3x2 rib, it seems to transition well into stocking stitch almost seamlessly.
Additionally, for the remainder of July if you've ever purchased a pattern from me before, this pattern is free. Just take it through the ravelry cart checkout and the price will automatically be deducted.
For all those details and to purchase or get your free copy, pop over here.
P.S. Stayed tuned as later this week I have a VERY exciting giveaway to announce!!