Once again we realized during Christmas that the most precious gift we can give or receive is indeed very personal: it is the person itself, spending time with us. What joy the visit our our daughter and god-daughter brought us! Add to that the first hand-written Christmas Card envelope by our grandson Victor! Another special gift were those thoughtfully phrased Christmas mails I received from Ravelry friends across the world. A wonderful way to start the year 2014. 

Friendship across continents
OMA + OPA – written by grandson Victor in December 2013

On the first day of the new year, we had the traditional German New Year’s Brezel (Neujahrsbrezel), made quite unconventionally by our daughter – and I was wondering why I was always taking the long route for making a yeast dough while her accelerated method definitely produced the same results, or even better! It is said that haveing a slice of the New Year’s Brezel for breakfast will bring luck throughout  the coming year. Write to me for the recipe if you are planning ahead…

New Year’s Brezel – Neujahrsbrezel – (©) Picture by Valerie Mader

It is still winter, a very harsh one in many places of the northern hemisphere, especially in the United States and Canada – and although my god-daughter lives in the US sunbelt she still loves warm hats. It adds to her personal look and comfort. A personal look evolves over time, deviations are allowed and even called for, depending on the season, mood and occasion. And today, the liberty of wearing what one likes and can afford is an immense advantage from the situation just half a century ago. Luckily, the sixties were the time when designers like Mary Quant and model Twiggy came along and triggered an avalanche of fashion changes.

So for my amazing Californian god-daughter often traveling into colder areas of the world, here is the prototype hat in the making: Some bulky wool, a lacy layer of thin mohair, and the reversible hat, knit in the round, is ready for those colder days in two looks. See the finished hat in the next post.

I have seen this free pattern idea somewhere (probably on Ravelry), while the origin of the hat design is unknown. Please contact me if you happen to know the source as I wish to give credit to the designer. It might not be exactly the same because I just memorized the basics some time ago and then winged it. 
The lacy side provides extra warmth and makes the hat unmistakable if worn lace outside. I cast on 72 stitches with a stretchy cast-on method, trying out The Chinese Waitress method, a new one for me and I have no idea from whence it got its name – a bit cumbersome but veery stretchy. Join to knit in the round. Knit the brim of the hat k4, p4 until you have the desired brim height. See the finished hat in this post.