Friday, February 24, 2012

The monkey hat

A few months after the knitting bug bit me I found this pattern for a sock monkey hat. I really liked the concept, but couldn't find the yarn at a local yarn shop (LYS). So I made a few modifications and use worsted weight yarn from Vanna's Choice in tawny. This was my first experience with intarsia, the link in the monkey pattern (click on the word monkey above) was very helpful. I was so proud and pleased with that first monkey hat. I made more modifications to the original pattern and now make them sized from preemie to adult. I'll see if I can figure out how to upload some photos a little later and write out my modifications.
This is the the version from the link above.  I really like it...thank you so much for posting in Knitty. 
Here's a version of the hat that I made, infant sized with matching baby (thumbless) mittens.
I like a bigger pom on top and don't worry about adding ears.  My pattern is almost exactly like the pattern posted in Knitty, but I liked a little larger mouth (go figure).  You can follow the pattern linked above or try my version.  Have fun!
To make the hat I use size US size 7 needles and worsted weight yarn.  I found a good deal on Vanna's choice varigated in Tawny and use bits of Vanna's choice red, white and black to complete the look.  I also knit using the magic loop method
You need to work out of both ends of the Tawny in order to do the Intarisa method (or roll off a few yards and use that for the 2nd portion of the cuff). 
Vanna's choice acrylic yarn 3.5 oz tawny
bits of Vanna's red, white and black (for embroidery)
Size US size knitting needles.  You can use 4 double pointed or as I do interchangable needles with at least 36" long cable.
Infant size
Cast on 54 stiches in tawny
Row 1 K2, P2 to end, you should end with K2
Turn...we are not joining yet
Row 2P2,K2 to end 
Row 3Turn, K2,P2 for 16 stitches,  K the next 22 stitches, back to the pattern for the remaining 16 stitches.
Row 4 turn P2,K2 for 17 stitches, P1, change to White and Purl 20 stitches, change to Tawny and
P 1, then back to the pattern K2,P2 to end.
Row 5, Turn, K2, P2 for 16 stitches, switch to white K22, switch to Tawny repeat pattern to end
Rot 6, Turn P2, K2 for 16 stitchs, switch to White, P22, switch to Tawny, repeat pattern to end.
Repeat rows 5 and 6 one more time
Repeat row 4
Repeat row 3
Repeat row 2
You're going to join your work now and work in the round, P2,K2 around (ending on P2).
Continue in the rib pattern for the next 8 rows.
Voila the cuff is complete, don't drop anything...we're going to do the body of the hat next.
You need to increase one stitch in the first row only...I do it right away.  Kin the back and front of the first stitch.  You should have 55 stitches on your needles. You should cut off the white at this point.
Knit in the stockinette pattern (just plain old knitting if you're doing it in the round) until the body of the hat measure 3.5 inches from the start of the stockinette pattern.  If' you're using a small ball of Tawny to work the intarsia, make sure you're working off of the large skein to complete the hat. 
Start the decrease
K9, K2tog, repeat to end
K8, K2tog, repeat to end
Switch to RED, Cut main yarn.
K7,K2tog to end
K6,K2 tog to end
K5,K2 tog to end
K4,K2 tog to end
K3,K2 tog to end
K2,K2tog to end
K1,K2tog to end
K2tog to end
Cut yarn, leaving a nice 4-6 inches for the tail
Run the tail through the remaining stitches.
To make the nostrils I determine the center of the mouth and then embroider an inverted triangle on either side in Black.  I embroider the eyes equidistant from the nostrils (triangles right side up). 

Don't forget to sew in your ends.

Turn the cuff up, sew the seam and YOU ARE DONE!
I hope you enjoy making your monkey hats. 

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