So, winter’s coming on, and it’s about this time that I tend to take a little mental inventory of the items in the accessory basket (usually there’s something that went astray last year, never to return), and immediately wish I had about twelve more things to choose from. This is, let’s face it, at least partly due to vanity (who doesn’t want glove options in every possible colour?), but also partly because it’s just plain nice to have something new. And the only issue with that sensibility is that by the time I cast on for a new hat or pair of mittens, I already wish I was wearing them. Accessories are the fastest possible garments a knitter can make, and yet when it’s cold outside and you want that hat right now right now please, almost nothing can be knitted fast enough to satisfy the preening impatient knitter in your head. (Or, maybe it’s just my head. It’s entirely possible this is just me.)
In any event, I decided that this would be the winter that I fully embraced the bulky knits. You just cannot beat the chunky yarn for speed, so all I wanted was something that would be both quick to knit and satisfying to wear. The hat(s) you see here is the result of a few different attempts, where I just kept streamlining further and further and finally took the “just do more with garter stitch” admonishments of fellow knitter friend Jane under advisement, paired it up with a few awesome big cables, and ta-da. This hat is pretty much my new favourite thing ever.
The Squall hat (available on Ravelry and Patternfish) uses a single skein of Sweet Georgia Superwash Chunky, or the equivalent yardage of chunky weight wool (we’re talking in the neighbourhood of 100-120 yds per 100g skein), and is genuinely so fast that by the time you start to maybe possibly think about how long it’s taking you to knit it…you’re already knitting your second one. And the garter stitch panels are just squishy enough to feel not just warm but comforting when you put it on your head, and excuse me I think I might feel a garter stitch jag coming on. There’s nothing quite like it for winter.
Of course, once I got the hat in order I couldn’t help but want mittens to go with it, so the matching Squall Mittens (on Ravelry, and on Patternfish) were not far behind. These take 2 skeins of Sweet Georgia chunky, or about 150-175 yards of your preferred chunky yarn, and I love them too. They use the same combination of big cable and garter stitch, which makes for a pretty sturdy mitten when worked at a slightly snug needle size (these are on 5.5mm needles for the mitten, while the hat uses 6.5mm).
(Colours: the top purple one is ‘blackberry’, and the other green hat and mitts are in ‘spruce’.)
Basically, winter can come now. I’ve got the knits and I’m ready to go.
I hope you enjoy the patterns, and that your own winter knitting is well in hand!