Quick, Easy and Fun Knitted Hat/Cowl Set

Complexity, it is something that I have a tendency towards. I don’t know why, but for some reason I feel the need to do fiddly little bits. This makes it a challenge for me to cook up something that is simple. Which is kinda the opposite of what one would assume. It is actually a little bit harder for me to develop a pattern using only basic techniques.

I will come to a point in a pattern where something needs to happen and for me the most logical thing is to put in a quadruple centered decrease and volia! problem is solved. But when I am trying to make something simple I frequently have to look back several steps and figure out how to rejigger the pattern so that I don’t get to the point where I need a quadruple centered decrease.

Easy is hard.

Counter-intuitive, I know. But there it is.

A matching Hat/Cowl set in DK weight yarn

Esopus Creek Hat & Cowl Set

This pattern set is pretty darn easy. The cowl is made up of knits & purls. That is it. The hat is not much more complicated, you have the obvious need for decreasing in the crown to make it – you know – hat like, but other than that it is knits and purls.

Detail of the crown of a hand knitted hat

See, crown decreases for optimal hat like properties

And a little bit of fancy because I cannot resist a wee fancy. It uses the same technique as the Rollercoaster cowl in that the texture is created by alternately knitting the piece inside out. And really, once you understand that I actually want you to do something that you are always told not to do … that is a piece of cake too.

I didn’t want the set to be too matchy/matchy so I chose complementary colors of madelinetosh tosh DK. The hat is in Nutmeg and the cowl is in Earl Grey I am very pleased how they play off of each other. And I think that the cowl shows you how the texture plays with a variegated yarn. As I discussed in a previous post, if you want to substitute yarn you need to look at the actual properties of this yarn as opposed to simply looking at the fact that it is DK. I think that this would work fine in any of your heavier DKs and lighter Worsteds.

Hand knitted easy hat and cowl set

The inside-out technique means that both pieces are reversible and it doesn’t need to be blocked! The lack of blocking is apparently a plus for some people.

For the name I went with a place name. I designed the cowl while I was at Rhinebeck, so it is great airplane knitting. The texture pattern gives a wavy/cable-y feeling and it just so happened that a major creek was running right by our hotel so I asked of my roommates “What is the name of that creek?”. A few googles later – we have a name. (did you know that google was a unit of time measurement?)

Neither piece takes an entire skein, but you need more than a skein to make the cowl – so you need two skeins. If you had a larger put-up you might be able to get both out of a different kind of yarn. As always, I cannot wait to see what spins other people put on the pattern. I never cease to be amazed how creative knitters are (as a whole).

So, are you doing any last minuted gift giving knitting? Need quick and easy? What are you working on?

3 thoughts on “Quick, Easy and Fun Knitted Hat/Cowl Set

  1. Such a timely post. My LYS just started carrying MadTosh and I had been pondering what pattern, now I know!
    Knitting wise I’m working on stockings and slippers right now. But now I have these lovelies to look forward to after.

    • Oooh, you are in for a world of fun. As with many independent dyers, there are … issues … with consistency in color from skein to skein, but the colors are worth it. Soooo beautiful. Luckily I like one skein projects so matching skeins isn’t a huge issue!

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