Few weeks ago, at the start of summer, end of spring, my husband asked for two things of me: a knitted hat and felted slippers. He's had hats before, but has the habit of washing them until they can fit the kids, and then even more! He's also had couple of pairs of felted slippers before, but worn them through. He really loves these things and uses them a lot in the winter time.
My go-to pattern for felted slippers is from a Norwegian booklet for knitted/crochet items for Christmas presents, and I've made them about dozen times. The yarn that is required is a heavy worsted and although I have substituted it in the past, I like to use the original yarn. It's hard to come by in the US and so are any other heavy worsted yarns. I'm not inspired to use any of my leftover stash for this project so I've decided to get the yarn (Fritidsgarn) in Iceland when I visit in August. Fritidsgarn is ideal for felting and will make hard wearing slippers (even for my husband). Here is a blog post where I show unfelted slippers, probably the last pair I made for my husband.
I've been inspired lately to use my leftover stash, especially since I took over the kid's play room. I looked at my leftover worsted weight yarn, which I don't have a lot of in wool yarn, but I managed to find some colors that would look good on a hat for a grown man.
The pattern is from Last Minute Knitted Gifts and it called "Kim's Hats". I used 5.5 mm needles (two circular) and started out with the man's size, but it was coming out too wide, so I started over with the woman's size. I made a garter stitch black ribbing in the bottom, then stockinette gray-black-gray stripe combo and worked the top decreases in black. I made the hat shorter than in the pattern so it comes out as a beanie. Originally, my husband was dead set on ear flaps, but he seems to like the hat quite well as it is ;)
The black yarn is left over from a hat I made for my uncle. Him and Clint were close when we lived in Iceland, and his health has deteriorated in the years since we moved away and I quite like this connection between my husband's hat and my uncle's. Unfortunately, I didn't seem to have blogged about the hat (it was a Christmas gift), but here is the Ravelry link. The two shades of gray come from a vest I knit with lopi yarn I got last time I was in Iceland (2,5 years ago!).
I think the hat looks great (especially in person, it looks a lot more bland in the photos) and the last photo shows him wearing it, with artwork we got as a wedding present (almost 10 years ago) in the background.