Sunday 1 August 2010

Ivydene in Alpaca

I bought some lovely alpaca/acrylic blend yarn last year.  It is produced by Alpaca Select in Coventry and the shade and softness made it jump into my basket the first time I saw it.

It sat in my stash for a long time, as 100g of DK yarn doesn't go very far.  I originally thought maybe it would become some mittens, but I recently found the perfect pattern.  That pattern is Ivydene by Woolly Wormhead.  The pattern is designed to be knit with possum yarn but I felt that the soft haze and softness of alpaca would have a similar appearance.  I think I was right.

I don't think this yarn shows the pattern as crisply as the yarn used in the pattern.  This may be partly due to my blocking and partly due to the slightly more "hairy" appearance of the yarn.

You can see the stitch pattern slightly more clearly in the above photo.  (Hat photos are always clearer on a polystyrene head, but you can't see how it looks like on actual person very easily).

I like the appearance of the garter stitch band, but I worry that it may lose elasticity over time.  Though it will succeed in keeping the ears warm.

I really love how the decreases work on this pattern.  The crown becomes a feature that can be shown off, rather than something that is a necessary evil.  The slouch on this hat allowed me to tie up my hair and have it fit inside the slouch.  I think it would look equally good with short hair or with hair down.

I've wanted to knit a Woolly Wormhead design for a long time.  I love her interesting and quirky designs and I've admired other people's finished projects.  I'm pleased that I chose this hat as the first project of hers that I did.  I will definitely be knitting more.  In fact I may even try this pattern in a different yarn in the future.  I think it would work in a straight forward 100% wool very nicely and it would show off the pattern even more clearly than my alpaca mix yarn. 

I would like to keep this hat, as it would go beautifully with my Purple Travelling Woman shawl, but alas, it is destined for the Christmas 2010 gift pile.  Ah well I'm sure it will be gratefully received.


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