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Christmas gifts ctd.: hat edition (& life update!)

Sorry it’s been a while.  I’ve been quite busy with personal things (which I’ll share some of towards the end of this post) as well as knitting & crocheting, as you’ll know if you follow me on Instagram!  I’ve got 2 crocheted shawls & 1 knitted shawl blocked and I just need to weave in the ends & take photos before I share, but I’ve been churning out hats the past week or so and they’re ready to show!

not your average crochet : christmas hats

Sorry, I know none of them are crocheted… just bear with me until I get to the shawls if knitting bores you.

The top hat is the Pippi hat (free pattern) and I just love the chunky cables, although they were a bit hard on the hands!  I used a little over 1 skein of KnitPicks Billow in the Tumeric colorway, which I love, and this yarn is so soft and rustic looking I’m going to have to get some more!

The middle hat is the Caramel Brûlée hat (paid pattern) and I was a little bummed that such an expensive yet simple pattern did not fit well.  It’s snug and a tad short for me (but an extra repeat of the pattern would have most likely made it too long).  Of course, when it’s stretched out you can really see the beautiful cable work — it looks kind of like a mess here.  Hopefully it’ll be perfect for it’s intended recipient, who has a smaller head than I, but if I make this pattern again it will be with larger needles.  The yarn is LionBrand Wool Ease in Blush Heather and I used less than 1 skein (although I expected to use more than 1).  Also you can’t really tell here but I knitted a Coats Metallic silver thread with the yarn so it has a touch of sparkle/frost, which I thought was perfect for winter!

The bottom hat is the Ribbed Waffle Hat (free pattern) and thinking that I might run into a similar problem as the Caramel Brûlée hat I opted to go up a needle size from the recommended 8 to US9 instead.  I think the 8 would have been fine for my size head but the 9 made a hat that is cozy on me but even fits my husband comfortably (and he has a very large head), so I’ll be making more of these for the guys in my life who still need presents made for them!  It also took less than 1 skein of LionBrand Wool Ease (this one in Rose Heather) and was the quickest of the 3 hats here, taking less than 24 hours to complete.

The pompoms were actually purse keychains that I took the little clasps off of, and there’s a tiny elastic that I can pin into the hats so that they’re removable for hat washing.  They were a bit expensive, however, so I might get some online next time for a lower price (these were from my local JoAnn’s fabric store).

life update

While my job is starting to leave a bit to be desired, I’m getting a lot of life satisfaction out of other things at the moment.  I know I’ve spoken here before about how much Wing Chun Kung Fu is helping me, but I don’t think I can truly convey through writing the powerful effect it has had on my life since March, when I started taking official classes.  I had no idea that practicing martial arts could provide such nourishment for the mind, body, and spirit, but it does.  So much so that it’s changing how I look at myself, my relationships, my job, and the world around me in general in a very empowering kind of way.  I’m practicing 3 days a week for at least an hour and I’m making some great friends.  I’ve gone to 2 seminars with a revered Wing Chun master named Sifu Francis Fong in the past couple of months, which were so informative, fun, and motivational, and I also took part in a demonstration of Wing Chun at the Moon Festival here in town a couple of weeks ago.  Here are some photos:

With Sifu Fong at the first seminar

With Sifu Fong at the first seminar

 

Doing the butterfly sword vs dragon staff demo at the Moon Festival with my friend (staff was knocked down at this point)

Doing the butterfly sword vs dragon staff demo at the Moon Festival with my friend (staff was knocked down at this point)

 

After Sifu Fong gave me my certificate at the second seminar in Atlanta

After Sifu Fong gave me my certificate at the second seminar in Atlanta

 

With my very talented training partner and friend at the 2nd seminar (cropped short to hide her name on her certificate)

With my very talented training partner and friend at the 2nd seminar (cropped short to hide her name on her certificate)

I’m so lucky to have been able to attend the seminars (thanks to Mom and Dad for the early birthday present!) and to have found such a great local teacher with 3 sessions a week.  The mind, body, and spirit are all connected and I truly feel each of these parts of me improving thanks to my Sifu, friends/partners, and the great experiences I’m having with Wing Chun.

OK, so I’m gonna leave that at that, since I could go on and on about the benefits and things that make me happy about Wing Chun and I should probably move on so as not to repeat myself too much and bore my lovely readers!

In other news, fall is slowly approaching; this is the first week forecast to have all highs in the 80s, which is our first sign.  Actually, Pumpkin Spice Lattes were the first sign, hehe, but they were released pretty early — do they even count?  Fall and winter are my favorite seasons because I can finally wear the stuff I make.  I’ve got a sweater in the works too that I forgot to mention, and it just needs sleeves at this point; I hope I can finish it soon but the Christmas gifts are taking priority — I don’t want to get behind on those!

Well, that’s a lot for one day, I think that’ll wrap it up.  Thanks for stopping by, see you soon!  I’ll try and not to take so long next time between posts!  🙂

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Comments

  1. Brilliant that you’ve taken up kung fu. My boys did it for 2 yrs, but alas, no kung fu in the town we live now 😦 It is a fantastic martial art.

    • It really is — that stinks that there’s no place to learn in your current town! That seems to be the case all around though. I’m just luckily located in a city.

  2. Good for you, I enjoy yoga which is quite tame compared to Kung Fu I would think but similarly the benefit to mind and body is very rewarding. Love all the hats too, you are very good getting so organised for Christmas.

    • Ooooh I’ve always wanted to try yoga, and I bet the benefits are great! Hehe, this is the first year that I’ve really been on top of Christmas stuff, so I’m excited about it.

  3. Your hats are beautiful! I am so jealous that you are working on your Christmas presents already. Good for you 🙂 Sounds like you are really enjoying the Kung Fu. And sounds like you are doing great at it. So happy for you.

Trackbacks

  1. […] cozy pattern I posted a couple of weeks ago!  I knew I’d get to some crochet after those knitted Christmas hats.  Well, I maaaaay have gone on a hat making spree… Here’s what I’ve done since […]

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