Here is Omnia (ravelry link), the second hat in the VIP club 2016 series of hat designs! If you are a VIP club member, you have the pattern and have maybe even knit it already; if not, you can join the club right now, receive this pattern (and Provocateur) immediately, and get four more hat designs – all with different constructions! – throughout the year, every other month. Also, mega discounts on ALL my patterns!! Click here to join!
Omnia is constructed from the top down, in the round, and it can be made in sport or worsted weight yarn, with different kinds of striping patterns making it look really different. Above is a brown merino recycled yarn (approximately sport weight) with narrow stripes of Spincycle Dyed in the Wool. Below is the same Spincycle self-striping yarn by itself:
Here it is in Plymouth Galway Sport wool yarn, with four colors striped in 3-row wide stripes throughout the whole thing:
Here’s a sample in worsted weight leftover scraps, lots of Malabrigo and assorted other yarns (they are all listed on my rav project page here if you’re interested):
This subtly-striped sample is in two colorways of madelinetosh tosh merino worsted weight yarn, both of which are variegated and share a shade of teal, making the stripes really blend together:
And my final sample is in Black Trillium Pebble Worsted (leftover from my Liy sample), with the 1×1 ribbing modification option included in the pattern. Normally, just the brim is ribbed, but you can choose to make the whole hat ribbed for a slightly different look:
Close up of the ribbed fabric:
Another way to customize the look of your hat is the wavy bottom edge: if you make the brim very short, you’ll get a very wavy bottom edge, like the sample below, but if you want your bottom less wavy you can knit the ribbed brim for longer and the wave will be less dramatic, or disappear completely if you go extra long.
As for sizing, this hat comes in three sizes for the sport weight gauge, two sizes for the worsted weight gauge, and three height options for every size (and then you can always add extra height to the bottom if it’s not long enough at the end). All of my sport weight samples are the medium size, a perfect fit on my 22″ circumference head. The above and below samples are both the short height, for a fitted hat.
The below sample is the medium height, for a bit of slouchiness. If you want lots of slouch, the long height will give you that!
And then the worsted weight sizing is a bit versatile – the sample below is the smaller size, which fits my head snugly, in the short height. It’s shorter than I’d like, and I may go back and add some more height at the bottom so I’ll wear it more, but I wanted to show it to you as is. While this size stretches to fit me, it would be more comfy on a smaller head size:
My ribbed sample is the larger worsted weight size, for a comfier fit on my head, in the short height:
And my scrappy sample is the larger size, long height, for super extreme slouchiness! It’s so long that I can fold up the ribbed brim at the bottom and still have plenty slouch, which is how I’ve been wearing it:
Here’s a look at the top-down construction, starting with a very small circumference and increasing out, shown here with the magic loop method:
As for techniques, this hat is just increases and decreases, not much to it technique-wise, but it does use an uncommon increase method, the centered double increase. I added a video tutorial and photo+written step-by-step tutorial to my website to go with the pattern – click here to find them.
I also added a new video tutorial for weaving in the ends as you knit, which will come in very handy if you’re making your own stripes!
Especially with a hat like the one below, with stripes in all different yarns, if you weave in all those ends as you knit around you’ll have very little finishing work when you’re done. On this one, I carried the main color turquoise yarn down over the stripes, and weaved in the ends of each new color as I knit:
As for design inspiration – my VERY old design Waving Chevron Scarf (ravelry link) uses the same concept of making wavy chevrons by moving the decreases back and forth, with just one chevron making the scarf:
Ravelry user graphica made a gorgeous blanket version of this scarf (she has very detailed notes on her rav project page), repeating the pattern several times across, brilliant! I used that concept, redesigned the stitch pattern with different kinds of increases and decreases to work better in a hat, and turned the idea into Omnia!
I had lots of fun playing with different kinds of stripes in all my samples. The striping pattern I used for the four-color hat below was designed so that I’d never have more than two yarns attached at a time, so I wouldn’t have to worry about four yarn balls getting all tangled up.
Here’s how I did it (copied from my rav project page): I striped 3-row stripes, with 5 stripes of each color, overlapping with different colors at the beginning and the end of the 5 stripes. So I started with (green, white) twice, then I switched the white with blue and striped (green, blue) three times, so now there were 5 stripes total of green and the striping pattern was established, so all I needed to do was switch each color to a new color whenever 5 stripes were completed. I switched out the green with orange and striped (orange, blue) twice; now there were 5 stripes blue so I switched out the blue for white and did (orange, white) three times, so there were 5 stripes orange… once it’s established it’s easy to keep track of what’s happening.
I actually knit this pattern nine times total (not counting partially frogging and reknitting); the Spincycle sample was completely knit and blocked, and it ended up not fitting – it was an early prototype and I hadn’t figured out all the sizing yet, so that ended up being the small size – so I frogged it, rewashed the yarn (pictured below), and started over. This pattern was tricky to figure out the details, and I went into it thinking it was a pretty simple design, which is part of why I didn’t do enough swatching to figure things out in the first place before knitting complete hats. That’s bad design planning on my part, I could have saved myself a lot of hat-knitting time by doing better planning in the first place.
I knit two earlier prototypes to figure out the details which both ended up not being usable as samples. The first one, below to the left, in Classic Elite Yarns Liberty Wool self-striping worsted weight, was my first try at all the ideas, and ended up being very different from the final pattern. It’s still unblocked because I’ll be frogging it to reuse the yarn; but I learned a lot from the trial and error of knitting it!
My second try (above right) was in Universal Yarn Deluxe Worsted Long Print LP, which is perfect for this pattern but discontinued, sadly; it’s pretty close to the final pattern, smaller worsted weight size, close to the long height, but it’s different enough to not be an official sample, although I probably won’t frog it because it is wearable. (Both of these ran out of yarn around the bottom and were finished off in stripes of other yarns at the bottom.)
If you want to see lots of different kinds of striping patterns besides my samples, VIP club knitters have lots of projects up on ravelry! LOVE the variety of these projects!!
The Spincycle Dyed in the Wool is such a great fit for this pattern, making for a really cool look, so different from normal stripes. If you’re in Portland, I got my skein from my newest very local-to-me SE yarn shop, Starlight Knitting Society, where you’ll find a nice selection of this yarn! My one skein made the full hat above, with enough left over to make the narrow stripes in the hat below:
So that’s Omnia! If you make it, please be sure to post your project photos on ravelry so we can all see what kinds of stripes you make!! The next VIP club hat is coming in June, so you’ll learn the details about it on (or around) May 24th. I hope you have lovely spring weather and lots of colorful flowers wherever you are!