Catching up, a couple of designs

This starts with a story about Dave and some delicious yarn.  Dave is one of my co-workers, one of the guys I work most closely with every day.  Last summer, I was knitting a sweater for the JMF trunk show and whenever Dave would come into my office, if my knitting was on my desk, he would pick up the ball of Chadwick and pet it.  He loved it – how soft it was, the gorgeous color, how warm it seemed.  I was charmed, because most of my co-workers seem to regard my knitting as just a weird thing I do (and I don’t even tell them about the spinning!).

Dave really is an all around great guy, and his appreciation for my knitting told me that I had to knit him a hat, out of the Chadwick that he had spent all summer petting and admiring.  Because he was an artist in another life, I knew I wanted it to have some colorwork to make it interesting.  Since he’s a guy (obviously), I didn’t want it to be TOO interesting.  When I went looking for just the right pattern, I couldn’t find it, so I decided to make one up for myself.

Here is what I came up with:

Picket Fence on a Country Road

And he loved it!  He was so excited when I gave it to him, I was really touched – there’s nothing better than having your work really appreciated by the giftee, you know?  He wore it around the office, he told everyone I had made it for him, and the best part was that he was completely surprised.  I loved it.

I decided that I would write the pattern up and it is available from Ravelry as a free download, and I am really happy to be able to share it with everyone.

Fresh on the heels of finishing Dave’s hat, JMF announced that they were doing a design contest.  Folks in the group on Ravelry encouraged me to enter Picket Fence in the contest, but there was a catch – the rules said you could only use two balls of yarn.  Although I hadn’t used more than two balls worth of yarn, since I had three colors, it was out.

I’d had such fun designing Picket Fence, though, I decided I would try another design for the contest.   I just squeaked it in on the deadline and I learned a LOT from the process.

I was really pleased with how it turned out (there’s more pictures on its Ravelry project page:

Geometric Hat, modeled by Miss Hannah

And I’m pleased to say that tonight, when they announced the finalists for the contest, my hat was one of the ones they selected!  There are a lot of amazing, gorgeous patterns in the running, and you should definitely go and vote for your favorites.  Of course, I hope that one of them is my pattern, but I will not feel bad at all if I lose to any of the other patterns up there – they are all that good.  If I win, KFI gets to keep my pattern, and hopefully they will make it available.  If I don’t win, I’ll be publishing it myself and will let you all know when that happens.

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