How does this happen? OK, I didn't knit a gauge swatch. But seriously (before the finger-shaking starts), who knits a flat gauge swatch for a colorwork hat knit in the round? Not I. I did, however, check my gauge in the ribbed section and as I started the colorwork. I think I must have loosened up. A lot (fear of tight floats?). There has been some discussion on other blogs lately of the ways in which gauge kicks the butts of knitters everywhere, so we'll just leave it at this: gauge will bite you when you least expect it.
Mom, if you're reading, there's about to be a spoiler sort of thing going on here, which means that you should stop reading right now. Seriously. Cease and desist. (The rest of you, please stay; I could use some opinions.)
Mom, you were warned.
So, I asked Older Daughter to model the hat for me so I could take some pictures. I compared those pictures to the pictures of the lovely young thing wearing the hat on the Solsilke site (scroll down, you'll see it). If you compare them, you'll see that the one on the Solsilke site looks like a tam. The one I knitted looks like The Blob That Ate New York.
It looks marginally better from behind (could I ask my mom to walk around backwards? Probably not).
But I kind of think that she could fit a whole armadillo in there along with her head. No?
So, opinions? Is it as bad as I think? (Why do we ask questions to which we know the answers?) If we all agree that it is, the course of action towards which I am leaning strongly is a mild hand felting (lots of control), just to sort of bind it all together and shrink it up a little bit. As an added benefit, this will make it even more wind-proof, which is good on the toasty-warm side of things. Believe it or not, it's only about an inch and a half bigger in diameter than the pattern calls for, but on a head, an inch and a half makes a difference.
Meanwhile, another tragedy hit last night, this time in my spinning world. I was spinning in the kitchen, talking to Rick while the girls did homework, and I dropped (as one will) my Golding drop spindle. On a carpet. Where it broke into little bitty pieces. Irreparably. And there's not much more to be said about that. (Although I could mention the symphony of apologies between me and Rick as we tried to find all the little bitty pieces: (me) "I'm so sorry. I can't believe I broke the absolutely gorgeous fiber tool you got for me." (him) "No, I'm so sorry. I feel like I bought you a cheap fiber tool that breaks at the drop of a hat." Or the drop of a spindle, as the case may be. (me) "But it's not a cheap fiber tool. I love this spindle." *wail*)
In good fiber news, the shawl continues apace. I am most of the way through the first chart, after which the rows will start decreasing, and therefore speeding up. Nothing picture-worthy yet (you know how blobby early lace looks), but the yarn I am using is the exact creamy shade of pale butter, and it's beautiful, and so very soft. I can't imagine not liking this shawl. Once I've got that to the speeding-up stage, I think I'm going to dive into socks for a while. With luck, that will happen tomorrow morning, while Rick and the girls are off at a trail maintenance work party and I have the house to myself for a few hours.