I have the Ringwood pattern cap completed. Named for the British town, where it’s used extensively for gloves. This knit stitch pattern is useful for a variety of applications. It creates a nicely textured fabric, and I can see its use in caps, gloves, socks, and accent panels on larger garments. This cap has a series of decrease rows that can be done a number of different ways. The basic stitch pattern is a three row repeat of, row 1 – Knit, row 2 – Knit, row 3 – Knit one, purl one, as worked in the round. These rows are repeated and the resulting cloth is springy and textured. If I had to give it a technical name, I think it would be, “broken stockinette” – although it may have a technical name already.
The decreases are worked every other row. Since the pattern has three rows, the decreases will occasionally fall on the “knit one, purl one row”. I will work my decreases by knitting two stitches together, however this will cause my pattern to shift when I’m on the “k1p1” row. So I can purl two together when the pattern calls for a purl. There are advantages both ways. I can stay in pattern, or I can have a smooth decrease line going to the top of the cap, but not both. I originally decided to knit two together for smooth decrease lines, but when this falls on the k1p1 row I found that I didn’t care for the way it disrupts the pattern. I will either have three knit stitches in a row or throw the entire pattern off. So I decided to decrease in pattern (the opposite of what I had decided last week). This kept the integrity of the Ringwood stitch pattern with the decreases not forming much of a line. The stitches just lean towards each other.
For my cap, I will need to decrease eight stitches evenly every other row. Since I have 104 stitches, I divide my stitches, by placing a marker ring every 13 stitches in the row before the first decrease. When I’m on a decrease row, I work in pattern until I have two stitches remaining before a marker, then I knit two together or purl two together depending on the row and stitch count. This decreasing in pattern doesn’t leave the pattern completely unbroken, but I think it’s closer. I should knit another and see which I like better – but this hat needs to be placed in the post sooner rather than later. Maybe he’ll be getting another in a different color when Fall or Winter comes.
I finish this cap the way I finish any other knitted garment, a good soak with lukewarm water and Eucalan Wool Wash. After it was thoroughly soaked, I squeezed the water out, placed it on a towel and rolled it up giving it a good squeeze to get as much water out as possible. I tried to not agitate or rough it up. I don’t want any felting or to lose the stitch definition at all – it’s the personality of the cap. I laid it flat on a wire garment rack to dry. It’s almost dry, then it can get wrapped in some tissue paper, place in a bubble envelope and shipped off to its recipient.