Hat fashions, if you notice, have certainly been turned on their head.
Hats are the one accessory you either love or hate. Hathead, flathead, these are the wintry results of trying to keep your head warm in the chilly weather.
This hair flattening problem was usually the result of head hugging toques and caps.
Lately, our love of all things chunky and big has gone straight to our head.
The chunky yarn and double thickness in some styles has added bulk making the hat more proportionately flattering for large heads .
My head shape and hair length was not ideal for hat wearing but once I made the chunky toque, I was delighted with the results.
Two evenings worth of knitting produced an attractive hat, so quick to make that I ended up making another as a spare.
Read on and be inspired by 10 free pattern designs featuring different ideas for making your next winter hat, either for yourself or someone special.
For more ideas on different hats, be sure to read Anti-freeze Dressing .
During the holiday season people, especially family, seem to gather together more often. The McGuire clan is big and getting bigger so it seems there is always an occasion or reason to party.
Everyone contributes a dish of some kind and more often than not, I seem to bring a cake. Presentation is important and placing the cake on a cake stand you've made is always appreciated.
Treats are gobbled up quickly. One sister-in-law is famous for her spiced nuts, an easy, munchy snack and another for her savoury dip. Both are great with wine and beer.
Flowers or seasonal plants are always festive and brighten up a table or sideboard buffet spread.
Candles set the mood and depending on the design, like the memory candle, can start conversations about events that happened during the year.
Your host and/or hostess has welcomed you into their home. Why not show appreciation with a small gift?
Here we are, into the first few days of the winter season and already I'm talking about a trend featured for next spring.
Well, here's a reality check, fringes are not new. Trends are recycled and repackaged.
Some hang around for quite a few seasons and others, mercifully, die a quick death.
Ordinary fringes on the bottom of a scarf are boring, been there done that.
Now, leather or suede fringes on a knitted garment is interesting creating a boho vibe that is currently so popular.
Think tufts of fringes here and there, not necessarily in even lines.
Starting with a plain, flat base mix textures using bouclé, sheer tape, eyelash and metallic fringe.
This mix creates excitement in the design, much like mixing patterns or colour blocking.
A thick roving yarn randomly knotted on the shoulders lends a dishevelled, military feel simulating epaulettes.
The design possibilities are endless as are the types of fringe patterns and materials to make them.
Read on and be inspired by designs featuring different ideas for fringes and how to use them. For crocheters there are several novel patterns to try.
Nothing looks or feels more cosy than a soft scarf wrapped around your neck, especially when the winds of late autumn are becoming more chilly.
Cowl neck scarves, neck warmers, circle or infinity scarves, whatever you call them, they keep the cold at a distance.
Wrapped around your neck once or double wrapped, they are accessories adding colour and texture to your jacket, coat or sweater.
The rectangles are easy to knit with edges that can be sewn together making a closed circle or zippered, buttoned and laced together for more flexibility.
The book featured above is filled with creative ideas, a lovely addition to any knitter's library, a great gift idea for that special knitter.
Read on and be inspired by designs featuring different ideas for stitch patterns and closures, how to determine size and 4 free patterns to get started making your chill chaser.
Finding treasures to give as gifts is truly enjoyable. Shopping for me is always enjoyable but shopping for ideas is truly inspiring and exciting.
You never know when you'll hit upon a creative nugget, so a handy notepad and pen is always good, especially if it's not easy to take a quick picture.
Shopping online, however, is nirvana as the whole world of ideas opens up with inspiration at every click.
Shelter magazines, home décor stores and of course, my favourite place to graze, I mean gaze, Pinterest.
The hunt is always for those unique ideas that can be translated into a fabulous DIY project.
Handmade gifts, ones that are made with care and love are the best.
Many times you can run out and get a gift that's cheaper, but not better.
The trend points to handcrafted items so why not give the real deal this holiday season.