After making my red cowl I made a hat to go with it. I used the same template as for the cowl, but I did shorten it a bit. I made the hat in the same way as the cowl, except that I did not use any string and I kept the decoration with the silk to the front of the hat. To make the hat, you merely flip the template around where the narrow side is at the bottom for the openening of your head.
I still had some trouble shrinking the length as I really didn’t want too many folds in my hat as that style really doesn’t suit me. I need a hat to fit my head snugly as my noggin is quite small, but I still wanted to have some extra interest. At one point near the end of fulling the wool started to migrate through, even though I did everything the same as for the cowl. However, in hindsight, I really didn’t do exactly the same as I rinsed in hot water before the cold and that was my downfall (even though it was in the instructions) as I had made my cowl totally with cold water. Yes, it can be done. You just need to work a bit longer. I wasn’t concerned about getting a firm felt here as I was making a hat, and although this type of hat is meant to be soft, I like a hat to be nicely felted so it won’t pill. I also had a couple of issues with some small holes in the corners at the top, so I tried to felt in some extra wool. You couldn’t really see them from the outside, but they bugged me. In the end, I folded the hat and put it into a lingerie bag and popped it into the tumble dryer for half an hour. Even though I measured the width at the bottom and it was supposed to be right size, I still needed to shrink it down as it still felt too loose. After a half hour, I checked the hat, still too big but still damp and popped it back in for another 30 minute cycle (it goes cold for the last 10 minutes) and took it out after 10 minutes. It was the perfect size. As I did the herringbone layout, I was able to stretch it out nicely on the hat form. Once I shaped it on the form and checked it on my head (it does my hairstyle no good trying on a damp hat), I then rinsed all the soap out in cold water and reshaped on the hat form again and left it to dry in the airer. I checked the hat in the morning and gave the hat a shave where the wool migrated through the viscose. It wasn’t as bad as I thought. Shaving brought out all of the lovely shininess of the viscose. I also didn’t have any holes in the rosettes, so the dryer and extra wool sorted that out. I need to be more careful with my layout next time. Here is how it looks on.
I am so pleased with how it turned out! It fits me perfectly, is very light and squishy, and yet very warm. I have had so many compliments about it on the social media groups. I wore my cowl and hat to my guild meeting. There are a few felters there that were interested in the making. I am glad I had my cowl on as it was a bit chilly in the venue. It is a little bit heavier and thicker than some of the other cowls I had been wearing lately, but it is very comfortable and I really noticed the difference in the temperature when I took it off.
I will definitely be making more of these as they are quite easy to do and I really love the texture. I just need to work out what color to use next! 🙂