FO Log: Glendalough Hat (2018 FO-07)

Hats seem to be my go-to palate cleanser these days instead of socks! They knit up so fast, and they’re rewarding - the only challenge remaining is that there’s really, honestly, only so many hats a person needs. I might need to get to gifting my hats to people - oh well.

After Hozkwoz, I decided to cast on a hat that had been sitting in my queue ever since I first saw this glorious pattern photo:

 
 

It’s the Glendalough Hat by Verena Cohrs, published in her TRAVEL digital collection this summer, and originally it’s knit in Echoview Fair Isle, a worsted weight yarn by a wonderful spinning mill / farm combination in the US.

While I didn’t have any Echoview yarn in my stash, I had picked up a skein of Stone Wool Cormo when I was visiting A Verb for Keeping Warm earlier in the year which matches the yarn the pattern calls for quite well.

On the needles it went!

The Pattern

The hat pattern comes in three sizes - a toddler / child size, a smaller adult and a larger adult size - so I decided to knit the happy middle, the smaller adult size. As all of Verena’s patterns, it’s incredibly clear and comes with charted instructions.

I decided to omit the folded brim as I was quite certain I’d be playing yarn chicken at the end of the project. Instead, I just knit the brim for half the length the pattern specified and then moved on to the cable part of the hat.

Another omission that I would come to regret later on is that I didn’t swatch. For hats, I tend to be a bit lazy and not swatch as I always think they’re a bit more forgiving than other knitted items - which, for the most part, is true, unless it just happens that your row gauge is way off so that the hat comes out wayyyy longer than originally intended. Which is exactly what happened.

So, what I ended up with is a hat that looks a bit too much like a smurf’s hat on me:

Glendalough Hat - 1.jpg
Glendalough Hat - 2.jpg

It’s most definitely not the patterns fault, it’s my own, and it’s quite easily fixed: I’d just have to rip out the crown decreases and frog back to where I think they should start and I’d be good to go. Honestly, though: The hat fits David quite well as it slouches better on his head, and he’s in need of one, so we’ll see if he actually wears it in the winter. If not, I’ll rip back and fix it.

Coming back to the pattern though: It took me a little while to find the cables really enjoyable, but once I got there, it was smooth sailing. You have to be a bit mindful when knitting it as the cables are cabled in different rows, but it’s most definitely one of those patterns that you can knit without always looking at the chart.

As usual, I was cabling without a cable needle (Ysolda has a great tutorial on this if you haven’t tried it yet!) which worked well, both with the cables the pattern calls for and with the yarn I was using.

The Yarn

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I’d been wanting to get my hands on some Stone Wool ever since they first launched two (three?) years ago. Back then, it was an exciting addition to the American breed-specific yarn company landscape - besides Brooklyn Tweed and Quince & Co., there wasn’t much else that I was aware of, and the yarn and branding was so on point, everyone went crazy for it.

Alas, it’s really difficult to get our hands on here in Europe, so I had to wait until this spring and my visit to San Francisco to pick up a skein. With $25 to a 100g skein, it’s definitely on the pricier end of the non-hand-dyed yarns, but I’m happy to spend my money on companies with a similar value set who are careful about treating the environment and their employees well.

I chose their American Cormo in Ozark which for some reason comes across as a deep turquoise on their website, but the skein that I got is more of a forest green with a hint of blue undertones in it.

Glendalough Hat - 4.jpg

Funny thing: I actually didn’t know that Cormo was a cross-breed of Corriedale and Merino until a lovely podcast viewer pointed that out a while ago after I’d waxed on about that it was a lot softer than I expected it to be, “almost like Merino”. Duh. Well, you live and you learn, right?

Long story short: I wasn’t the biggest fan of the yarn, truth be told. I’m probably going to make myself really unpopular with this as everyone seems to love it, but for me there was something off about the softness of the yarn and the big plies, and… I don’t know. It felt too slippery for my taste.

It did work really well for the cables, though! When I was done with the brim and had just started the cable panel, I got quite worried that the color was actually too dark to properly show off the cables, but that didn’t prove to be true. I think the hat works beautifully in this yarn, so if you’re looking for an alternative to the Echoview yarn, Stone Wool Cormo definitely works.

Conclusio: Swatch, or at least measure your hat to make sure your row gauge works out well. Cormo = Corriedale + Merino. David has another hat. Yay!