Justin’s Hat

Justin’s hat. Or more precisely his second hat, a simpler sequel to this handsome cabled number. Technically third hat, if you count the one he stole claimed from me. Or really fourth, since there’s the bright red acrylic one I crocheted to replace the equally red and acrylic one he lost (also crocheted by me, albeit to a more reasonable length the first time around).

What can I say? The man likes hats.

The pattern was something of a surprise pick, since he’s shown a preference for cables both delicate and bold. I’ve got quite a few cabled numbers in my Ravelry favorites, including ones that were contenders the last time I knit for him.

But rather than another ropey knotwork design, he chose the simple knit-purl texture of Christian’s Hat by Ágnes Kutas. Though I doubt the Fifty Shades of Grey character that the pattern title alludes to crossed Justin’s mind (since neither of us saw the films or read the books), I like to think of it as a secret homage to Folding Ideas’ Lukewarm Defense of Fifty Shades videos, which I’ve watched twice and cannot recommend enough. They’re a thoroughly researched and breathtakingly strange adventure through the fanfiction, adaptation, and film production that yielded the Fifty Shades franchise, and they’re delivered by my favorite video essayist and foldable human, Dan Olson.

If analyzing bad erotica isn’t your cup of piping hot caffeine, I can also recommend The Art of Editing and Suicide Squad and The Art of Storytelling and the Book of Henry—also movies I haven’t seen and frankly could not be compelled to watch under any circumstances. Because yes, I am in the habit of watching analyses of media I have no intention of consuming. Including analyses with the same approximate runtime as the thing they’re critiquing. Without a doubt 2020 has been the Year of YouTube for me.

Anyway, the pattern is free, it fits on a single sheet of paper if you print it (I didn’t, I knit it so quickly), and it’s simple to work and modify if needed. I actually didn’t modify this one, as it’s already designed to fit a 22–24-inch noggin instead of the usual 20–22-inch head. I just sized up from US 4 & 6 needles to US 5 & 7 needles, a standard adjustment for me because I’m a tight knitter.

The yarn, as mentioned previously, was leftover from my Everything Gold Must Stay sweater. I knit this hat before I knit my Topaz shawl, which was a blindingly optimistic move on my part considering I paid zero attention to the amount of yarn I had or the amount either project would require. It worked out more than fine for me, but I can’t in good conscience suggest anyone else make such a foolhardy choice. You wouldn’t, of course, because you are all, I imagine, very prudent, sensible folk with budgets and skin care routines and that sort of thing.

The knitting came together in just four days at the end of September. We snapped the photos on our neighborhood greenway when no one else was around, over the long weekend we both had off from work for Christmas. The best of the dozen-and-a-half shots are above, but honorable mention goes to this gem:

It’s captioned—and I’m quoting Justin here—”Oh salad, you so funny!”

I know. Sometimes I can hardly believe how lucky I am either.

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