New Favorites: Stranded purl hats

This is anecdotal, but I feel like there’s been a significant trend lately toward combining stranded knitting (which is almost always stockinette) with texture in various ways — frequently through the introduction of bobbles. I’m particularly taken with these two hat patterns that take on just a little added texture by virtue of simply purling some or all of the colorwork—

TOP: Hat with Purled XO by Arne and Carlos features a classic motif at jumbo scale with purled colorwork boosting its impact

BOTTOM: Hjarn Hat by Amber Platzer Corcoran is also bulky gauge but with more delicate, three-color motifs (click through for the more colorful samples)


PREVIOUSLY in New Favorites: Yuko Shimizu sweaters

18 thoughts on “New Favorites: Stranded purl hats

  1. Effective with a strong color contrast so the purls pop. The purls could be lost visually in colors that fade into one another. Also have seen quite a bit of mosaic color work the past couple of years.

    • Yes, and that does take on a very slightly different texture than stranded knitting, even when done in stockinette.

  2. I do like the way these look; I recently finished a sweater that, while it wasn’t an outward design feature, did require colourwork on the purl side (Glaswegian on Knitty). It wasn’t a lot of fun, but I do love that sweater.

    • I’ve only done stranding on the WS with my cowichan-style vest, and I actually enjoyed it!

  3. Old is new again. These remind me of both Bohus knitting and twined (or two-end) knitting. These Scandinavian techniques were briefly popular back in the ’90s due to Meg Swansen’s articles in Vogue Knitting. Schoolhouse Press has several books (and newsletters) featuring them.

    • I know Bohus features purl stitches in the colorwork, but am not sure if that’s enough to qualify something as Bohus style or not? Bohus is something I’d like to know more about, and have had that on my list for ages to explore.

      • I read a really in-depth article about Bohus knitting in one of my early Threads magazines — I’ll see if I can find it!

      • The above hat isn’t actually Bohus in style, just reminiscent of Bohus. Same re two-ended knitting. The definitive Bohus book in my view is “Poems of Color” by Wendy Keele, published in 1995.

    • I don’t, but there are many nice bulky weight yarns out there you could try instead. Maybe Puffin from Quince or something like that.

    • You can line your Lopi hat with a 1.5-2” strip of micro fleece. We just whip stitch it around the inside of the hat at ear level with sewing thread.

  4. cool! I haven’t seen anything about this, but I kinda like it, and I have a ton of bulky yarn at the moment.

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