C.C. beanies and family portraits

Ever since moving to Chicago, I’ve noticed a certain type of beanie floating around during the fall and early winter (those are the cold ones, for my bay area readers out there). Definitely knit and probably store-bought, I became determined to find, study, and replicate this hat myself, which involved 1) identifying people wearing this beanie, 2) taking pictures of the backs of their heads, and then 3) going home to study my pictures and figure out the stitching (rest assured no one was stalked in the making of this product). You may be wondering why I didn’t just ask someone where they purchased their beanie and then find pictures online (and/or google ‘store bought beanie chicago knit where from’ which i just did today because i still look things up like i’m using askjeeves), and to that I have no good answer except to admit I’ve never been good at asking for help (except when it comes to fantasy football because i’m currently in last place and forgot my password someone please help).So it turns out that these beanies are from C.C. aka Colorado Chick (#whatagirlneeds), and they’re surprisingly affordable, which makes my three year long endeavor to recreate one of them a bit anti-climactic (anti-plymactic). Nevertheless, I knit a bunch of different bad prototypes before finally settling on one that I liked the most and seemed most similar to the market brand. I used alternating rows of brioche stitch and simple purling with a doubled ribbed brim and converging cables at the top, because cabling makes everything better (just like old fashioned doughnuts and online shopping). Also I needed a way to hide my ugly decreases.Here’s Connie looking great in this beanie even though she said her head was too big for hyats (not a typo. girl’s got a real thick michigan accent.). Connie and I both like to swim. At my last intramural swim meet, she won first place in the 50m breast stroke, and I was 22nd (of 26) in the 50m freestyle. I think my medal got lost in the mail or something.I’m still working out some final kinks with the finishing, so I haven’t written up a formal pattern yet. But be on the lookout! Then you can make your very own C.C. (carbon copy?) beanie instead of paying amazon a whopping $8 for one.

If you’ve been following my burgeoning career as a photographer, then you’ll know that my last wedding gig was met with rave reviews. The New York Times called it ‘perhaps the most impressive thing a man has done with a camera since the invention of the selfie’ (‘why are there so many pictures of sheep?’ -vanity fair). IMG_9012Well, it seems word of my success has been spreading (mostly by me), and a couple of weeks ago, one of my deans asked if I would take her family portraits for her! I immediately said yes, pencilling her into my last free time slot of October (between ’10am-2pm: cafe while knitting and playing hearthstone’ and ‘4-7pm: sit at home eating trail mix and rewatching season two of the west wing’).IMG_9140Little did I know, her family consists of five alarmingly photogenic people (and one disastrous dog) basically waiting to be discovered by a Gap Kids ad campaign, which made my job superbly easy. We started at their brownstone and then moved to a Japanese garden by the lake, where a guy photographing a model wearing an evening gown and laying across a waterfall was my biggest competition.IMG_9041IMG_9082IMG_9199IMG_9205No waterfalls, but I think I did pretty well, especially considering that my photography portfolio is 95% yarn (i tried real hard not to focus in on that cream cable knit sweater). We met on what turned out to be the last warm day of the year, and I got the opportunity to capture warm (and a few candid) moments of a truly beautiful family.

I can’t wait to hear what NPR has to say about these!



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