I’d been watching the pixiebell Etsy shop for a while, as I love the hats posted there. Eventually, there was a sale, so I picked up 3 patterns to knit for myself (and possibly others). Well, this week in Quebec city, it was so cold I determined to knit myself a nice, bulky warm hat – and so, when we trekked all the way out to the only knitting shop I could find anywhere near the city (La Dauphine*), I pulled up the The Original and Oversized Beehive Beret Hat pattern on my iPod and snagged myself some of the Lion Brand Wool-Ease Thick & Quick the pattern called for.
It took me a total of 5 days of scattered knitting to complete it, and I think it’s a success. Lovely, warm, fits perfectly, didn’t even need to knit a gauge swatch, and the colour is wonderful too. The only downside is that the wool is rather low-quality (La Dauphine didn’t have any other yarn that was as bulky as the pattern called for), and while it knit up fast, it’s already beginning to felt – I haven’t even washed it yet. I think I’ll pick up a nicer bulky yarn at some point in the future and make another, in a different colour. But for now, this will do just fine.
Check out the project page on Ravelry.
Edit January 3, 2012: Just wanted to elaborate on the shopping experience at La Dauphine in Quebec City. I forgot to snap a photo of the outside, but you can see one on their Google Maps page. The store is fairly small, which was a bit disappointing considering how long it took us to talk there from Vieux Quebec, but the selection is pretty wide, with a lot of beautiful sock and fine yarns. They also had some other crafting stuff available, including tatting, embroidery and crochet threads, and embroidery templates. I was quite happy to come across the tatting threads, as they had some colours I haven’t come across anywhere else (like the deep teal and cherry pinks I love so much). They also had leave-in delicate clothing rinse Eucalan, which I’ve been looking for after a workshop in October describing how to take care of fine materials. I would definitely recommend getting one of the many buses that pass along Chemin Sainte Foy in order to get there. For more crafting goodness, there’s also an adorable little pottery painting shop/cafe a mere two-minute walk from La Dauphine: le Céramic Café-Studio. Check it out!
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