Accessories like bags, scarves and hats are a great way to show off your personality and mood, especially during the winter months when your clothes are often covered up by a heavy coat.
Cathy Carron offers a whopping 40 different hats, designed with different moods or personalities in mind, in her book Hattitude: Knits for Every Mood. From high-spirited and lively to mysterious and haughty, whatever your style, you're sure to find a hat or two here you'll want to knit.
Hattitude gets down to business quickly, with a brief introduction to the concept of the book followed by spreads featuring the 40 patterns, each described by a mood. "Theatrical," for instance, is an asymmetrical beret with a contrasting stripe knit into the brim.
"Lively" is a Fair Isle stocking cap with a tassel and extra-long ribbing in the back that can serve as ear flaps, while "Collected" is a chunky ski cap worked in Linen Stitch and folded origami style at the back.
The patterns use a range of skills, with some being pretty straightforward (the two-toned watchcap called "Natural," for instance), while others call for more skills (such as the Fair Isle hat and "Aloof," which is knit from fine cashmere yarn and includes a cabled ribbing and a Seed Stitch beret body).
Some patterns are worked from the brim up, while others are worked from the top down, which may be a new experience for some hat knitters. There are felted hats, hats with stripes, cables, and other textured stitches. There are berets, stocking caps, a hood, a balaclava, a headband, a kerchief and more.
All of the hats are for women, and most have instructions for two sizes, while a section in the back explains how to get the perfect fit out of your knit hats.
Some of my favorites include "Nostalgic," a tweed cloche with a strand of rawhide woven in to add color and interest; "Matter-of-Fact," a simple striped beanie worked in Broken Rib; the ponytail hat called "High Spirited," worked in Seed Stitch; and the felted fedora known as "Joyful."
If you like knitting hats for yourself or others, you're sure to find some projects in Hattitude that you can't resist. And if you aren't a big fan of hats yet, flipping through this book will give you a great idea of all the possibilities available to you when you make your own toppers.
Knitters who like to go their own way will likely find inspiration in these pages as well, whether it's a different stitch pattern, combination of fibers or a technique or color you might not have thought to try on your own.
Publication date: October 2009.