Sometimes a hat is just a hat. Sometimes it can become coasters, too. And in a sweater, you might find a scarf lurking.
What's all that about? Well, if you've leafed through the Fall issue of Interweave Crochet, you probably noticed the special Quick Gifts to Crochet section, with Leaf Peeper Hats, Pink Lady Scarf, Orchard Mitts, Adirondack Socks and Apple Cider Mittens. All are pretty fast and pretty easy.
But there are other potential gifts lurking within the patterns.
Here's my favorite: Coasters worked from the first four rounds of the Leaf Peeper Hats.
I happened upon this pattern by accident, when I was testing the pattern before publication. The first four rounds begin the curve of the hat. When I added a round of reverse single crochet around the edge, it popped the curve in the opposite direction. This makes the coaster hug the bottom of the glass slightly to prevent moisture from slipping off the coaster.
I dug into my stash of Noro Kureyon for the center four rounds, then worked the outer round in Lamb's Pride Bulky. I'm making sets of four in various colors for gifts; the colors are varied but complementary and the same color edging unites them. You could work these coasters in any other wool in your stash. And you can whip up a bunch during a single episode of Ice Road Truckers.
Here are some other stealth presents in the patterns:
Blue Ridge Cardigan Work the leaf motif and sew it to a hat, a scarf, or a bag. Or attach one or two to the outside of a present. Or make several and connect them end to end to make a scarf. Or make several to give to your Thanksgiving host to scatter on the table. Or attach them to a wreath for a door decoration.
Painted Desert Skirt Work just the swoopy curves of the hem. Join several motifs to make a fun scarf.
Moss Fern Wrap Start with fewer stitches and make it narrower for a lacy scarf.
Pink Lady Scarf Make this even faster and easier by making it narrower and shorter.
Moorish Mosaic Afghan Make a pillow by working two large octagons and sewing them together. Or make just one and sew it to a backing. Work the small square motifs in thread to make quick ornaments; attach a hook to hang diagonally and add beads to the point that hangs down.
Swirling Bag Make a table topper: Work just the pinwheel bottom and don't join the seams. Or make a felted bowl: Make the bottom out of wool; seam it and add a reverse crochet edging, then felt it (see the Fortune Cookie Bag for directions on felting. A tip: After felting, place it over the bottom of an actual bowl to dry).
Tahoe Hat Make a wee textured felted bowl. Work it in wool and felt it.
What other presents can you find lurking in these patterns? Let us know at CrochetMe.com.
P.S. You'll find my pattern for a crocheted finger puppet in the new Interweave Knits Holiday Gifts, which is full of fabulous gifts for you cross-crafters out there. The crocheted doll, Pinki, has a knitted friend named Blu–a great present for a cross-crafting friend.