Twinkle twinkle little knitted accessory
How I wonder what you are-essory.
A few years ago, Andrea Rangel and I did a little holiday collaboration - the Twinkle socks. They are based on her Saxe Point socks pattern, updated with a new colourwork pattern and of course brand new colours.
Saxe Point Socks. A pair of hand knit, striped socks. Colourwork at the cuff creates a garland of twinkle lights. There are six colours in the stripes (pink, dark blue, light blue, green, beige, and red), and black at the toe, heel, and cuff. These colours will be important in a minute.
Then, the next year, we thought it would be fun to use the same colour palette, but with a striping pattern that would work well for a hat, cowl, or scarf. Andrea had a couple patterns from our past collaborations that fit the bill. We chose the five stripes of the Botanical Sampler cowl, but decided to knit up a Full Spectrum Hat as a sample.
Botanical Sampler Cowl. A knitted cowl with five wide stripes. The colours are grey, brown and beige. Every time the colour changes, the knitting switches to a different stitch pattern. Two sections are stockinette and three are lace.
All that was left was to narrow down the seven colours from the original Twinkle sock to five for the hat/cowl version. I sketched up a few options and Andrea voted for her favourites.
Eight striped rectangles. Each rectangle has five colours, chosen from the seven options in the socks above. Do you have a favourite? If you look closely, you can see which is my favourite - I accidentally included it twice.
My favourite was also in Andrea’s top three, so that was our winner. It’s third from the left on the top row, and also second from the left on the bottom.
I also wanted to see how the colours look in slightly different arrangements - for example if you knit a Botanical Sampler cowl so that the first and last colours loop around and are beside each other.
Four striped rectangles, each with black, blue, green, red, and pink. They all have the same colours and each colour always as the same neighbours, but the whole pattern is shifted up or down. For example, if the first rectangle is ABCDE, the second is CDEAB. There is a lot of white space above and below the rectangles - this is because I saved the file as a square and I haven’t gone back to change the crop. I probably should but I’m trying to set a reasonable time limit for working on each post here, and tweaking the images probably isn’t going to happen. I suspect you don’t really care that much, so I’m not going to worry about it.
I don’t know if I learned anything important from those four rectangles above, but it is neat to see how shifting the colour pattern changes the feel slightly.
Anyhoo, so then we had an intrepid test knitter make a sample for us. She started knitting at the hot pink end, and never got to the black end. I think you can imagine how the hat would look different if she had started knitting at the other end.
Full Spectrum Hat. A long knitted blob with four stripes: blue, green, red and pink stripes. If you think it looks oddly familiar, yes, the overall construction of this hat is similar to a Musselburgh Hat. This pattern was released a year or so earlier than Musselburgh, and has a few different details including the sizing, the ribbing at the brim, and some stranded colourwork on one side that we omitted in this sample.
And here is Mandy modelling a whole Twinkle family - the hat, along with a scarf and mittens she knit using the same yarn. No question, she is ready for the holidays!
Ready in the knitted accessories department anyway. It’s possible she still has one or two other items left on her holiday to do list.
Mandy is getting her Twinkle on. She is wearing a knitted hat (the blob from the previous picture), mitts, and a scarf. She is wearing her dark green cozy parka, and there is snow on the ground behind her. There is also a lot of green poking out from under snow because this is Victoria and climate change has not made our winters less weird.
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I started publishing on Substack in September and have managed to consistently put out a post every Friday, until this week. No particular reason, but sometimes life just whooshes past, you know? Anyway, I’m publishing this today so that even though I missed my self-imposed Friday deadline I can still say I’ve done a post every week.