The problem with product knitting

The problem with product knitting, is that the receipient often has inconvenient opinions about the finished object.  The Fireman had a lovely storebought hat – it was a possum wool blend, extremely warm, purchased from the Woolshed in Canberra.  It disappeared at some point early in the trip, and the hunt was on for a  quick replacement.  I figured that NZ possum yarn was going to be difficult to find in Paris, and went to Le Comptoir, and purchased some Rowan Lima, which very conveniently was on sale for 40% off.  The problem was a knitting needle – and Le Comptoir was out of stock of 4.5mm circulars.  I had not planned on knitting with worsted weight while on holidays (don’t worry, I did bring three other projects with me).

Continuing the hunt,  I went to La Droguerie when it was completely swamped (something about a snowy Saturday afternoon in Paris), and purchased possibly the world’s worst circular needle.  It has a completely hard cable, and a bump to mark the join between the cable and the needle.  Being disatisfied with this purchase, I stopped in at the local yarn shop, and got a much better set of Prym needles (well not Addi or Knit Pro, but workable).  I needed an uncomplicated pattern, because I am once again sharing a computer, and don’t have access to a printer.  I chose A Hat fit for a Boyfriend, and quickly knocked the hat out.

The only problem was,  the Fireman wanted his ears fully covered.  While I was admiring how the decreases looked, the hat actually wasn’t performing its key fuction, to keep his head warm.   Shortly after this photo was taken, I had to undo the decreases, and knit an extra 2″ (making the length 8″ before the decreases).  The Rowan Lima, which had been a dream to knit to date (and it is a lovely soft, lofty yarn), was a complete nightmare to frog.  Part of the blame must rest with my poor night vision, and dark yarn, but the knitted yarn construction seemed to make picking up the stitches very difficult. Anyhow, it has actually been finished, and the Fireman says the alpaca is definitely warmer than pure wool, but not as warm as possum.

Who knew that the Hall of Mirrors would have good light? I’ve also finished some socks for the Fireman, but they can wait for another post.

P.S.  If you are looking for a way to help Haiti, try an undirected donation to Medecins Sans Frontiers –Yarn Harlot can show you how.


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I can be contacted at travellersyarn at

5 thoughts on “The problem with product knitting”

  1. I recently finished a hat with Lima that required ripping out and redoing. The fuzziness and cabled construction definitely added to the irritation factor, but it is lovely yarn and the hat turned out beautifully. As did yours, it appears.

  2. Gorgeous Photos, great story. He is a lucky fireman, and Paris looks gorgeous in the winter. Are the girls having fun?

    All those yarn stores in one day – so exciting

  3. Love the hat. good colour. Shame about the possum, next time buy in commercial quantities, emotional cost is more the cost in “argent”. I am impressed you perservered with difficult needles, this effort should be, noted

  4. I’ve been on a look out for hat patterns for my husband too (he’s the only one without a hat during our recent holiday to Tokyo). He’s kind of fuzzy with the style, so I might go for a knitted cap with brim or something…. Hope the New Year would be a great one for you and your family!

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