Tuesday, 9 February 2010

Where did you get that hat?

On Sunday morning, I woke with the alarm at 6.45am.  (I like to set the alarm early at the weekends, otherwise you don't get the full benefit of a lie in, do you?)   About 7.30 I made myself a cup of tea, and went back to bed and drank it whilst flicking through a Grazia magazine.  Not my magazine of choice, it's full of young skinny B- list celebrities.  But some of the fashion pages are interesting, including a section on stylish young women that they've stopped in the street and photographed.  I thought  that maybe I should try and be a bit more stylish, (not to find myself stopped in the street, you understand) so after my shower, I had a play with some make up, and a little try-on session from my wardrobe. 
Fast forward about half an hour, and I was bored with that, so decided to get some fresh air and a bit of exercise.  No real point in a walk without a dog, so I texted my friend's daughter and arranged to collect her dog, Trixie.    I got dressed in normal dog-walking gear - jeans, anorak and walking boots and went to fetch her.  I thought my friend's daughter looked slightly taken aback but didn't think anything of it, until about half way round my walk, it occurred to me that I was wearing scruffy walking gear, but fully made up, complete with bright pink lipstick.  The other dog walkers must have thought that I was either .....
a)  the most stylish dog walker out this morning, or  b) some mad old woman who's only outings in life are a muddy stroll round Waterford marshes. Never mind - as they say, 'barmy is in the eye of the beholder'.

Talking of which, I've made two hats this week.  One is a knitted one with flaps.  I've always thought they looked a bit daft, but with the recent cold snap (and another one promised_ they seem practical for keeping your ears warm.  So, I found a pattern, and some recycled yarn from a jumper I'd unravelled and reknitted,  that was about the right 'consistency', and I knitted it.  See, I'm keeping to the 'buy less, make more' resolution.  And here it is - no tittering at the back, please.....

I can't help reminding myself of a spaniel when I shake my head. 
My second hat was intended to be a 1920's type cloche. After much searching, I found what looked like the perfect knitted-and-felted-cloche.  I already had some felting wool from Knitting4Fun (which always felts reliably) which I'd originally bought for a bag.  Having compared the tension for that yarn, with the one on the pattern it looked about right, so on I knitted.  I finished it at our knitting group in Baroosh in Hertford.  I was a bit concerned that it seemed a little on the big side .....

Not deterred, 'cos I know that knitting shrinks a lot when felted,  I put it through the washing machine at 40 degrees.  Although it had shrunk and bit and started felting, it still needed a bit more, so I re-did it, this time at 60, which definitely did the job.  I haven't got a hat block, which is why Friday night found me watching the double episode of  the new series of  'LOST' wearing a damp felt hat.  Well, it can't all be party, party, party.
I left it to dry overnight on an upturned wooden bowl that my dad made, perched on top of a glass vase, and by the morning it was perfect.

So, opinions please on the two hats.  I'm really aiming for "quirky yet stylish" as opposed to "mad old bird".  You decide.  Oh, small tip - when pinning a flower brooch to a felt hat, it's probably best to do it when you're not wearing it.  Those pins really hurt when they jab into your scalp.

And on a final note - these have probably been there for days, but isn't it lovely when you wander down the garden with the recycling, and notice snowdrops for the first time this year.


  1. Are we voting on these... one, two or three? One might keep your ears warm but looks like a judge's wig gone wrong, two could be useful for when you've forgotten your pink lipstick and three... pretty much perfect I'd say!

  2. Gill you will always be a mad old bird (meant nicely). I like both hats but the purple felted one is definately my favourite. Well done it looks gorgeous perfect for walking the dog with bright pink lipstick.

  3. Can't help looking at hat number 1 and thinking of a mediaeval knight but perhaps that's just me.Love hat number 2/3 but surprised hat brooch hurt, what do they say no sense no feeling.Imagine how trixie felt!

  4. Yeah, so far I've been compared to a knight in chain mail, Oliver Cromwell and a high court Judge. Think I'll stick with the purple one - I wore it today and no one fell about in hysterics.

  5. ...oh no - we like the 'knight of the realm' look - don't reject it, it's v.fashion forward. Maybe you could send one to Florence from Florence and the machine - it's right up her street...

    Thanks for the tip about Dorset Cereals... someone lovely must have popped us on there (we wouldn't have dared mingle with such blog-masters).

    All the best x

  6. Pauline is asking visitors to Cottenham to wear a silly hat...
    Middle version would be perfect
    especially as you are on a non buying kick at the mo!
    Seriously like the cloche - what pattern did you use?

  7. I laughed all the way down your post and rolled about on the floor in hysterics at the KKK piccie ... sorry! Then ... I saw this fabulous purple felted hat with a beautiful flower and I will filled with jealousy and longing for a hat such as yours. It's wonderful and I definitely prefer the purple hat to the spaniel look ;o)

    Have a fabby weekend

  8. I would love to make the purple felted cloche, what pattern did you use??
    I thought the other one looked like you were getting ready for a joust!!!

  9. Pam and Aussie Jo - I've emailed you with a link to the cloche pattern. Anyone else wanting it, just mail me x