$140, my friends!
Designed by British designer Paul Smith, this pom-pom hat is knit from "lambswool" and has a fold-up ribbed brim. What I really like, though, is the play between the staid dark gray and the silly neon pink pom-pom.
This week I pedaled over to Wild & Woolly in Lexington and bought two skeins of Berroco Ultra Alpaca -- one in a dark gray, the other in hot pink -- and got to work. Two evenings of labor, using a free pattern I found on Ravelry, I got this:
I took this shot before blocking so the stitches aren't as smoothed out as I would like. (My ribbing always looks wonky before blocking.) I also have a small bowl under the hat to give it shape; when the hat's on my head, it's perfectly rounded instead of pointy. Shot of new hat in action TK as soon as my photographer returns home from school.
I do have to say, I like my version better -- my cables pop more and the hat doesn't look felted like the Paul Smith one does. My hat is light and soft, but thanks to the 50% alpaca blend, unbelievably warm ... warmer than just "lambswool," I'd bet. I will begrudgingly give Paul Smith the better pom-pom -- mine's not as full and puffy as his. I need to go back to pom-pom making school. Best of all, my hat cost far less than $140. Each skein of yarn cost $10.50. I used 64 grams of the gray ($6.72) and 10 grams of the pink ($1.05) for a total material cost of $7.77. Now of course there's labor. But I knit this while watching television at night; I start to fidget when I don't have something to do with my hands, so it's knit or bite my nails.
I'll be wearing my new hat on my daily hike through the woods. Next up: hot pink cabled mittens to match.