Almost Christmas…

Today I made 23 loaves of Christmas bread (sweet white/oat yeast bread with chopped dried apricots & cranberries & mangoes) for teacher gifts for my children’s schoolteachers.  Whew!

I am still knitting on a hat from handspun shetland wool for my Father In Law’s Christmas gift.

I had a cunning plan of presenting a super-fast hat pattern on my blog, but although I make one hat sortof over and over again, when I went to write it down it didn’t really sound like a pattern.  And when I tried to take notes, I remembered that I can only crochet a limited amount with acrylic yarn before my hands get so dry that I have to give it up!  Anyhow, in case anyone finds it helpful, I will try to put down here how I make my “standard” crocheted hat, which is sortof a cloche or a pillbox hat.  Nearly flat on top and just covering my ears.  This is based on how Nadine taught me to do a hat when I forced her to teach me to crochet.

Excuse the picture I took of my own head, in my messy kitchen..  I CAN pull the hat down over my ears, too.

The very short “recipe” for this sort of hat (which I generally do in double crochet, but sometimes half-double crochet, and, in this photo, some mystery stitch where I have NO IDEA what I was doing and am unable to recreate!) goes like this:

chain 4

slip stitch to join into a circle

double crochet 8 times into the center of the circle/space

chain 2, double crochet TWICE in each stitch around (mark the beginning of your round with a piece of scrap yarn or something)

next round, double crochet in each stitch around

continue in this fashion (sometimes increasing, sometimes crocheting around even, based on how the piece “lays”, if that makes any sense to you–if it is bunching up, you have too many stitches, if it is curling, you have too few–aiming for mostly flat) until you have a circle that is the size of the top of your head, like a yarmulke.

then double crochet even around until the hat is deep enough to cover your ears. single crochet one stitch. slip one stitch.  cut yarn with tail, pull tail through last stitch & fasten off.  Weave in ends.

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