|Look Out! There's an Octopus on Your Head!|
Yes, this hat has a story.
In early November 2011, I made a pretty crazy hat. Turns out it was my 50th chemo cap. You can click HERE to see the hat. The hat was based on some design elements & techniques I had learned from making a cap called "A Winter Solstice Hat" (to see that hat, click HERE). The hat called A Winter Solstice was designed by a gal in Colorado who is my good Ravelry email pal, "Colorado Mom". She's a really cool lady.
When I made chemo cap #50, I kept thinking about the crazy fancy cakes you see on programs on the Food Network. Colorful and crazy designs and textures. Good elements for a cap for a kid.
Anyway, I posted my 50th chemo cap on my favorite Ravelry Group called "12 months=24 hats", where the members make it a goal to knit at least two chemo caps per month. One of the group's members commented that my 50th chemo cap sure was a happy hat. Based on her comment, the group's founder "Plynn" decided the group should have a "Happy Hat Contest". How fun is that?! The deadline was midnight on December 31, 2011.
November was a pretty busy month for me... the Hemlock Ring Throw Blanket that was given to my parents for Christmas was pretty much my constant companion, so making a Happy Hat was not high on my list of priorities, yet I had a few ideas swirling around in my head. When I finished up the blanket, I started focusing on some other unfinished objects... the Sockhead Hat, Calabaza Calypso, and Chasing Rainbows blanket. Still no Happy Hat.
Then I got a horrible case of "Startitis" and cast on a Chinook Scarf with beads, a pair of Bamboo Socks, a plain pair of socks, a pair of slipper socks for my son, a pair of fingerless mitts... all while I should have been working on a Happy Hat. What's wrong with me.... seriously, I think I have some sort of affliction.
Last week, another group member sent me a message saying she sure was looking forward to seeing my Happy Hat. Oh yes, I really must do that!!!! So what did I do? I cast on a Clapotis! I tell you... it's an addiction! Either that, or I am a glutton for punishment.
So in the evening hours of December 30th, I finally cast on my hat and octopus. I tried to make up on octopus design by myself but failed miserably. Boy, I wasted a lot of time making Octopus #1... it looked more like a flat sprawling jellyfish... like the dead jellyfish you find laying in the sand on the beach. Ick!
I woke up really early on December 31st and found the octopus pattern called "Socktopus" on Ravelry. It took me all freakin' day to make that little octopus... you wouldn't think a little project like that would take SOOO much time, but it does. Eight tentacles!!!!! Why do octopi have EIGHT TENTACLES!!!! After the octopus was done, I knit like mad on the plain rolled brim hat... I used size 5 needles... yep, could have used size 7 and cast on fewer stitches... but no, I opted for 108 stitches per round on small needles! I knit like mad. I almost gave up. My husband said he could not believe I could knit that fast. I was so tired. I was ready to throw in the towel.
Finally, 9:30 pm on New Years Eve... my hat was done... I made the deadline. It wasn't even midnight in New York yet. Phew, what a relief. I was done.
Guess what? I won the Happy Hat contest. And I get a prize. How fun is that? What a nice start to 2012.
Happy New Year... Happy Hat!