Sunday, September 14, 2008

Gretel III : Once Bitten, Thrice Shy

Once upon a time in a chilly season long ago (and currently on the return) I promised Cathy I would knit her a Gretel beret. (Is this the Cathy blog? Why do I keep blogging about Cathy?) At long last, I have nobly cast on, cast forth and plan to make good on my promise; several days after her birthday. To use what is rapidly becoming my favourite phrase on this blog; better late than never! Lucky for me, it's hotter than Hades out there today and Cathy can probably stand to wait a little longer for her "birthday" present.

I've had a bit of challenge on my hands knitting this chapeau, the third Gretel to grace my needles. You see, the recipient is a petite little thing, and as a result has a petite little noggin. When Cathers tried on my last Gretel, she looked to be drowning in a sea of mustard coloured cables. No problem! I can size it down! ...Right?

There was no way in hell I was about to deal with math or re-jigging cables, so I chose to simple scale down the yarn and needles. As I'm attempting to go easy on the wallet and hard on the stash, I picked a skein of Drops Alpaca from my yarn stock and tried needles .75 mm smaller than the pattern called for (3mm & 3.75 instead of 3.75 & 4.5 for those that care about such matters). After I completing the ribbing I started getting cold feet. Was this thing going to be too small? Did I downsize too much? What if it turns out baby-size? Or beetlejuice size!

Eek! I though it would be best to compare the new version with the old:

Not very promising. I cast on again, upping the needle size by .25mm (3.25 & 4mm for the aforementioned folks that give a rats ass). Though the size was looking better, the knitting was looking a little loosey-goosey:

I suspect this yarn with this pattern are not meant to be... unless knitting for pin-heads. On to bachelorette number two!

Mystery "Swedish Wool Yarn" from a swap a while back.

I prefer the colour to the Alpaca (not that you can see much difference in this photo, but trust me, it's much more of a "wine" colour) though it's not as soft. Enh? You can't win 'em all. This time I'll try the same needle size as the last but with the new yarn. Cross your fingers/toes/miscelaneous appendages!


Christie said...


Reckless Glue said...

it's SO hard to judge with ribbing though...I find it always ends up being a lot bigger in the end than you'd expect. I'm about to do another gretel as well. My last one, a tad big. Do I knit the small version and then just block it out slouchy I wonder?
maybe I should just move on to something new.

Julia said...

I'm not ripping out the 2nd version just in case!

The Nutritionista said...

I cannot wait !! I am holding your little yarn sample in my hand right now and it's beautiful - as I will be when I wear the beret EVERY DAY.

Julia said...

Will you still wear it everyday if it's Beetlejuice size?

The Nutritionista said...

And speaking of having a shrunked head...I was at the ATM this morning and a kid actually pointed at me and yelled "mom, look how small that girl is!"
True story.