As my quest to crochet all the Christmas gifts this year continues, I’m feeling stuck in the world of manly hats and scarfs. These projects tend to be fast and easy, but sometimes… sometimes they’re anything but that. But let’s start from the beginning.
Men in my life, who are going to receive gifts from me this Christmas, include my boyfriend, my dad, my brother and my nephew. And at least two of them are difficult… I can never figure out what to give them so that they really like it. Those are my dad and my boyfriend. I don’t think it’s a coincident that they are both mathematicians too? 😉
So this year I decided I’m going with the essentials that everyone needs in winter and I’m crocheting scarfs and matching hats for them. For those “difficult ones” I mean. In an extremely diplomatic manner, I invited my boyfriend to the yarn store with me, and asked him which colours he finds acceptable for his clothing, and which not. Because you need to know he’s a bit conservative when it comes to this topic and only recently has he started wearing things other than black or navy blue, followed by occasional red (because of his favourite football team). To my surprise, he chose mustard yarn. Mustard! I mean, that’s practically yellow, I would never even think about it, but I was really happy! Because I don’t like crocheting with dull, dark colours, I don’t enjoy it at all. Anyways, he selected mustard yellow and so I only had to find the pattern for a hat and then start crocheting. The pattern I chose turned out to be both great and evil. It is called Crochet Seafarer’s Cap by Beth Hall and it’s actually a charity pattern. It is awesome and smart design, it’s not crocheted in round as most hats usually are, and it looks so nice when finished. It has this knitted rather than crocheted look, which is great in this case. But the brim is all made in slip stitch, which is such a pain. I am a tight crocheter, I always need bigger hooks than the pattern calls for, and slip stitches made by me are impossible to work with row by row. My fingers were hurting and I couldn’t bring myself to work on it for too long. So it took me about a week to crochet this hat, which is really unusual for me as it’s a small item and I crochet fast – and then it was too small anyways. Ugh!
The next one, following the same pattern, was for my dad. I made all of the hats and scarfs in Berroco Comfort Solids, because it’s very soft and nice, and for my dad I chose the colourway called Maine Woods. On a hat, it looks like camo, which is kind of cool as my dad loves the outdoors and it should be great when he’s in the park with the dogs (you know, those poor things who are not getting jackets from me this Christmas because I didn’t manage to crochet them). I chose a larger hook for the brim and added extra stitches, and this time it looks good. But again, crocheting it was a challenge because of the slip stitches.
In the end it turned out that I bought more yarn than I needed, which is better than buying not enough. So, having some mustard left, I decided that the first, smaller hat will be for my nephew (who’s getting the Simon’s cat and I wasn’t planning on crocheting anything else for him initially), and for my boyfriend I made Crochet Ribbed Hat by Elisabeth Ham. Much easier and faster work, such a relief after the previous one! But then I must admit it looks less neatly than the Seafarer’s Cap and it’s not as “solid” and seems less sturdy. Oh well, but at least it’s not too small! And the thing I absolutely love about it is the invisible seam. I’m going to rip out the seam from the previous two hats and them sew them up using the same technique.
Then I crocheted matching scarfs – the boyfriend requested something “matching, but not in 100%, and stripes are fine”. That’s what he’s getting then. For dad – once again Maine Woods. I went with my beloved woven stitch as it has this neat and smooth look, and I’m very happy with the results:
Now I’m left with one skein of Maine Woods and half skein of other colours and I think I’m going to crochet the matching scarf for the nephew, just like the one with stripes on the photo, and maybe another ribbed hat for the boyfriend. And then all this yarn is gone and I can finally move on to some selfish crocheting. I miss making amigurumi and I have some lace waiting to crochet a doily and another shawl… Ah, and in case of my brother, he’s getting the Spaghetti Monster hat and I think I’m going to buy something additional for him, because I don’t have much time left – I have to send all the gifts early enough for them to arrive in Poland before Christmas.
I don’t think I’m ever going to be so ambitious and crochet/ knit all my gifts again. It was an interesting challenge and crocheting for the loved ones is joy, but it was also stressful, especially that the time before Christmas is busy for me. So unless I keep crocheting gifts all year long and then just have them ready on time, I will probably be less determined next year 😉