Monday, January 20, 2020


For Christmas, my niece wanted a beanie like one she'd seen online in periwinkle. Okay then...

Yes, Christmas. I really only started my Christmas knitting after Christmas, so all those gifts are late. And yes, this is the niece of the gray behemoth from last year

From the picture (which I'm linking to only out of copyright concerns), I could tell it was a rather fine yarn knit in a one by one ribbing. But finding the color periwinkle proved to be a challenge. Ultimately, I had to search "periwinkle" on LoveCrafts.

I swatched. That just means I cast on a small number of stitches and worked them in pattern for a bit. I know how many stitches I cast on. I measured the piece. I know how big I want the finished beanie to be (niece's head was measured), Just a bit of math told me how many stitches to cast on.

From the picture, I could tell they used a tubular cast on. (These were machine knit, I'm sure, but I can still replicate in hand knitting.) I've never done tubular cast on before, but I have seen it done and I can follow directions. (Every technique is demonstrated somewhere online. That makes picking up new skills easy.)

It turns out that the tubular cast on is a bit complicated. You have to use a provisional cast on, then work five rows in a specific manner and... (If you're interested, you can see a video of this here.)

I set aside an afternoon just to cast on. It took me two and a half TV shows to complete, but I managed it. Then I joined to work in the round. And that's when my sneaking suspicion proved to be correct...

My hat was way too big.

For comparison, the above image has an actual head-sized beanie next to it. (It's more of a child size, but child size versus adult size isn't that much different.)

Deep sigh.

There's nothing for it now. I have to frog it and start over.

I mean, unless you know a giant that wants a beanie. In periwinkle.

I sat down to recalculate. Because somewhere the math went wrong. And that's when I saw it.

I had done the math correctly. Alas, when using niece's head measurement, I transposed the digits (instead of 23 inches, I calculated 32 inches). Someone, ahem, wasn't paying attention...

Considering how many times I gently correct students in math class with, "Does that number make sense?"...


  1. At least you caught it when you started looking to see where you went wrong with your calculations. It is a pretty color!


  2. Two and a half TV shows... I love nonstandard units of measurement. And who knows, maybe your niece would want a giant hat that fits over her entire head :P

  3. Bit of a blooper, we'd say in Star Trek. Scotty would simply map the size of your head using a scatter diagram via infared Lasers. Its all high tech now these days... tell the captain we'll have it ready in a jiffy!

  4. Great color...yep, knitting takes a lot of time but it is something you can do in front of the TV. Unlike cross stitch and other stuff you sort have to watch what you are doing. Great job...Now are these for this past Christmas or shall you hold for next yr?haha

  5. Better to realise now...tried to link through to see what the finished product would look like, but the link took me to a 404 page (clicking "one she'd seen online").

  6. Fortunately it wasn't a calculation that didn't make a satellite explode, or anything like that. Well, sometimes we don't practice what we preach (I'm looking at myself here). I agree with AJ Blythe. Better to frog a little than frog a lot. And, the first link took me to a 404 page, too.

  7. I love periwinkle and the size looks just right for my head...I have a big head.

    1. Your head is not that big. I promise you, that was more of a cowl than a hat.

  8. I understand about calculation when it comes to craft project. I been running the numbers though my head on up coming quilt.
    I never learn to knit.

  9. Liz,

    Math has always been my weakness. The basic stuff I do okay, but don't give me anything complicated. I can't knit so I don't have to worry with that. It's cool that you know how, though. I wish I had learned. I'm sure the beanie is gonna be loved when you present it to your niece.


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