Sunday, April 19, 2009

Can this hat be saved?

You all know I have a rather spurious history with making hats. In fact, my hat-making efforts seem to be quite snake-bitten. There was the Rowan Summer Tweed hat that ended up three sizes too big, like something Mushmouth would've worn in "Fat Albert." More recently, there was the very expensive Jade Sapphire Handspun Cashmere hat for the policeman who helped me on Christmas Eve...the hat which I attempted to fix by, ahem, felting.

And now, here we are again. Once again, my hat project began with a noble purpose. A friend on one of my tennis teams is a chiropractor, and he recently treated my knee (which I had slightly sprained right before a big match), at no charge. He and his wife are expecting their first child, and I thought I would make a little hat as a "thank you."

Please, somebody stop me...

To add to the challenge, I had the "cute" idea to make a hat that looks like a tennis ball. I went on ravelry looking for a pattern, and didn't see a single one.

This was omen number two.

I jumped right in, found the perfect shade of All Seasons Cotton, and had the basic hat whipped up in an hour or two.

This would have been another good place to stop.

Then, I started adding the tennis ball "stitching" in duplicate stitch. The stitching on a tennis ball is ever so much more complicated than I ever realized. It came out a bit wonky, but passable, I think:

Next, the real fun began: Trying to make it look more like a tennis ball by adding the word "penn." I tried duplicate stitch - it was a hot mess - too ugly to even take pictures of. Then I tried a backstitch. No go. I considered other words - love, prince, wilson. No luck. Finally, a brainstorm! Applied i-cord! This seemed like a brilliant solution. But now, as I sit here looking at it, I wonder if this is truly worthy to give as a gift:

I tried asking the DH for his opinion, but he was otherwise occupied:

I tried asking my kids:

So, dear readers, I need your honest opinion. Is it worthy to give? Or should it go to the frog pond?

- Shelley
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P.S. For those of you who read our recent Loops Scoop e-newsletter, here's a pic of my family talking on Skype with Ruth, my step-sis who is stationed in Iraq (if you click on the picture to make it bigger, you can see us up in the corner here in Tulsa):


Anonymous Lee Ann said...

Personally, I think it looks great! I never attempt anything without a pattern (as most of the Loops Troops know) and appreciate your ability to wing it.
Lee Ann

April 19, 2009 at 10:11 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's cute! This may just be me and the way my mind works but to me it looks like it says porn.

April 19, 2009 at 2:40 PM  
Blogger Susan said...

I am sorry to say that my reaction was similar to your daughter's. Maybe they would like a hat from "Itty Bitty Hats". Just sayin'....

April 19, 2009 at 8:38 PM  
Blogger JK_in_KC said...

Maybe it would look more like a tennis ball if you felted it? (Of course, felting would make it a much less of a hat. Perhaps a tennis ball cozy?)

April 19, 2009 at 10:09 PM  
Blogger JK_in_KC said...

Oops! Just reread that 1) you used all seasons cotton so felting is out of the question. So, bravo for being the first to construct a tennis ball hat!

April 19, 2009 at 10:12 PM  
Blogger Shelley Brander said...

Susan? Is this by chance THE Susan Anderson, author of "Itty Bitty Hats"? If so, I have to say that is the BEST hat book of all time! We sell them like crazy in the store. I actually considered making several of the designs for this gift, and just could not get the idea of the tennis ball out of my head. Next time, I'm sticking with the tried and true :)

April 20, 2009 at 5:00 AM  
Blogger anniejs said...

Well, I like it**. But I am concerned that the "Penn" is a tad large on a baby's head. Have you tried on a baby?

** I share Shelley's love of tennis


April 20, 2009 at 10:54 AM  
Blogger Annie said...

I think you should gift it! They will appreciate the effort.

April 20, 2009 at 2:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is impressive you came up w/this on your own; I would give it since they'll appreciate the effort & you can never have too many baby hats!


April 22, 2009 at 1:38 PM  
Blogger captured magic said...

So whadja do with it?

April 27, 2009 at 6:47 PM  
Blogger Shelley Brander said...

I gave it to him - before I could chicken out. He LOVED it! He immediately recognized it as a tennis ball and made no mention of porn ;-) He even said "The baby's wearing this one home from the hospital for sure!"

April 28, 2009 at 6:19 AM  

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