I told Mike about my plan to do the red stripe and then the black background with the Superman logo on it. He thought it would look better all black with just the logo red. So, I made it all black.
I got the ribbing all knit and started on the Superman design. All the suggestions I read said that when knitting in two colors it was not a good idea to try using the Intarsia method when knitting in the round. I decided to try it anyway because I was sure I could make it work for the first few rows and then I would just add a new piece of red yarn for each row after that when it got wider.
Lesson learned: I should listen to the experts. Even though I was sure I could carry the yarn back and forth and keep it loose enough to stretch, it didn’t work, and when I looked inside the hat I did not like the way it looked. Then I thought about all the extra ends that I would have to weave in and the fact that all those extra ends would make the hat less sturdy and decided that was a bad idea.
So, Superman Hat Version 1.0 was thrown back in the basket and I started to weigh my options for Version 1.1.
I undid the whole thing and started from scratch. This time I decided to knit the whole thing in black and then add the red stitches after the fact. This allowed me to knit the hat in the round (avoiding seaming, which I am still not really good at) and still be able to work back and forth with the red just where I needed it instead of trying to carry it around.
The hat itself knit up really quickly. Of course, by the time I had the number of rows I needed, it was taller than I expected. No big deal, Mike would just be able to pull it way down over his ears and stay really warm.
And then I started adding the red stitches for the Superman logo. It was actually quite fun adding those stitches and watching the pattern transform. It took longer than I suspected, but looked better than I thought it would. I was worried about it looking bulky, but it actually looked really smooth.
After I had it all stitched, I did notice one problem though. Do you see the few spots of red showing through the black? That’s where I used the back of the stitch to tack down the red and avoid really long strings pulling across the inside of the hat. I knew they would probably show through, but hoped that they wouldn’t be too obvious. I was ready to have the hat be done and decided to just leave them. I call them a quirk of having a handmade hat.
Mike loved how it turned out even though the Superman logo was bigger than he expected. He asked if we could take it to Justin that afternoon. I knew he wanted to give a Superman hat to Justin (who is a huge Superman fan), but I figured he would keep the first one and then give the second one away. We decided to give this one to Justin and he was very excited to have it.
So, Superman Hat Version 1.1 has left the building. Now I’m trying to decide if I will make Version 1.2 and just adjust the size to be a little shorter or try to create Version 2.0 – The (semi)reversible Superman Hat. Mike seems to think that I will be able to make him a whole series of super hero themed hats now. I’m not sure how that will work out yet.