It seems like it’s the time of year when we’re all scrambling to knit just one more accessory for that special person on our list.  I know I can always get a bit frantic in the final two weeks leading up to Christmas with my gift-knitting. I usually try to take a deep breath and remember that I’m doing this because I actually find comfort in the craft, although sometimes that perspective is obscured by a long list of deserving friends and family.  That being said, I thought a couple of accessory patterns might be timely this week, so here is the first:

Fenimore is a cabled tam that reminds me of roots and vines. The cable encircling the sides of the hat is a slightly modified diamond motif that drifts a bit from left to right creating a wave-like motion.  The crown is a knot of cables coming together in wedges to create a 6-pointed star.  Rather festive, now that I’m looking at it with holiday knitting on the brain.

Sometimes I like starting a design and figuring out the crown shaping on-the-fly, as a sort of personal challenge to figure out how to make the ‘body’ stitchwork come together in an appropriate and aesthetically pleasing way.  This must be a carry-over from my voracious childhood love of jigsaw puzzles.

The tam shape is achieved of course through proper blocking techniques — I wet-blocked mine and laid it out to dry with a 10″ dinner plate inside, being careful not to stretch the ribbing of the brim during drying.   The brim is worked on a much smaller needle to keep good memory and elasticity, the cabled section on a larger needle for a more relaxed fabric.

This sample was worked in our Fossil colorway — bone-white with a touch of natural heathering. I still think this color is begging to be unleashed upon a traditional cabled cardigan.  Perhaps I’ve just found a proper resolution for the new year?

The pattern is available now through Brooklyn Tweed or Ravelry.  Happy Holiday Knitting! (And don’t feel guilty if you’re letting yourself off the hook this year – I try to alternate one season of gift-knitting with one season of rest. It works well.) Enjoy!