My Favorite Man Hats

One of the many perks of being married to a designer is having my collection of accessories expand with unique, handmade items. Since I keep my hair short (as in, pretty much no hair), I do find myself wearing hats quite a lot. And, once the cold weather sets in, I find it essential to have something covering my head.

But, I’m a bit particular with the kind of hat I like to wear, and I bet you or someone you know is also particular with what they put on their head. Virginia has published several hat designs for men that are not only easy knits, but also look great. Here are a few of my favorites—my go-to’s when I’m about to head out the door.


Stormcrow Hat

Knit using three colors of Blue Sky Fibers Woolstok, this beanie has a simple, but cool colorwork section. Pattern can be found here.


Another simple colorwork hat, this one uses four colors of the hardy and readily available Cascade 220 yarn (a good way to use up some of the bits and bobs in your stash). Pattern can be found here.

Bombadillo Hat


I’m definitely a beanie person, but this hat has instructions for either a beanie or a slouch, as well as charts for a simpler two-color version or a great seven-color version. Pattern can be found here.



Sometimes I need a little more texture in my life, and this hat fits the bill. Again, this has two size options: a watch cap (my favorite) and a slouch. Cascade 220 is used on these, as well, and the watch cap is a nice dense fabric that really holds in the heat. Pattern can be found here.

Girder Hat

Girder Hat

New Year – New Socks

New Years Penguin

Happy New Years, my friends and readers! These last few months have been a bit on the busy side, and the hustle and bustle of the holidays is settling down a bit. I wanted to use this post to catch you up on some great sock patterns that Virginia published that didn’t make it to the blog… not for lack of wanting to try.

Shortbread Socks

Shortbread Socks

These cozy, sport weight socks are a quick knit, and a classic addition to any wardrobe. Pattern is available here.

Devi Socks

Devi Socks

If you’re a fan of SweetGeorgia Yarns, this sock pattern uses their Tough Love sock yarn. Pattern available here.

Essential Socks

Essential Socks

The Essential Sock is a basic, go-to pattern for top-down, heel flap socks. Pattern is written for fingering weight yarn. Socks are shown in a variety of Cascade Heritage colors. Color names and numbers are provided in the pattern. This is a great way to use up leftovers, or if you’d like an excuse to buy an armful of your favorite Cascade Heritage colors, this is it! Of course this pattern can also be made with your favorite self patterning yarn, or just a solid color, if that’s your jam. Pattern available here.

Autumn Orange


It’s been an unseasonably warm autumn (although, many “unseasonable” weather patterns seem to be becoming more “seasonable” with the climate warming up). Still, temperature  aside, the trees and plants still respond to the fewer hours of sunlight, getting ready to sleep in the coming winter months.

Oakdale Park

The leaves promise to be extra vibrant this year, and already we’re seeing some pretty landscapes close by our home. This park is a short hop, skip and a jump from our back door and we try to make a pass through the trails once a week. Fun to see the landscape changing throughout the year.

This time of year also inspires the use of orange in some of the needle felted critters. Particularly, those enjoying the types of things most readily associated with this time of year.




Owl holding acorn

and, Pumpkin pie!

Owl eating pumpkin pie

Shoe Polish, Superwash and Strawberry-Rhubarb Goodness

Shoe Polish Socks

Virginia has a new sock pattern available knit with Madelinetosh Twist Light. It’s an asymmetrical pattern that incorporates both cables and lace. Simple, but elegant.

Shoe Polish Socks

Pattern can be found on Ravelry.

Handspun Superwash Merino

And, my spinning has yielded about 230 yards of 3-ply (using the chain-ply method) yarn from 4.5 oz. of superwash merino. It’s a little thicker than what can reasonably fit through my CSM (another thing to be shared later), so this yarn might have to wait to become something else.

In the meantime… we enjoyed “harvesting” some fruit when organizing the freezer, yielding a super simple strawberry-rhubarb crisp. So simple, that a written recipe is hardly needed. Essentially pile the frozen strawberries and rhubarb into a big bowl, defrost for a bit. Add some honey (1/4 cup, more or less depending on desired sugar load), a sprinkling of flour (I use a gluten-free blend) and cinnamon. Spread that into a 9×13 pan, top with some ground-together pecans, oats, olive oil (just a drizzle) and molasses (another drizzle). Bake for 50 minutes at 375ºF (more or less until the bubbling is on the thicker side).

If you’re feeling a little more decadent, top with a little vanilla ice cream!

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp