I finished crocheting my first hat from a pattern (about a week and a half ago)! Yay me! And not only that: I customized the pattern!
I love hats, and cloches are one of my favorite styles! So when I saw THIS pattern, I couldn't wait to try it! I really couldn't justify going out and buying more yarn, though, and I had three skeins of Paton's Classic Wool in black...which, conveniently, makes up about three-quarters of my wardrobe.
Okay, so I have some really great (if basic) yarn that I bought on sale...except that it's thinner than the Lamb's Pride Bulky for which the Belliveau Cove pattern was written, and thicker than the Lily Sugar and Creme called for in the Gulf Shores hat. But I really can't go buy more yarn. So, I forged ahead and customized the pattern.
Like I said, I used Patons Classic Wool. That yarn calls for a size 7 hook, but I only have a G and an H, and none of the stores carry a 7. So I used a G. I added an extra round of double crochet stitches after round six; I increased it by one stitch every six, for a total of eighty-four stitches going into the shell stitch portion. If I were to do it again, I would make my increase round single crochet or half double, and add an extra round of shell stitches before the shaping the bell (round thirteen in the pattern). But I had already frogged several rounds to go back and add the extra round on the crown, and I was not about to crochet the same section a third time! Instead I added a single crochet edging, which helped lengthen it just a bit.
All in all, though, I'm very happy with my new black hat. :) And just in time for the really cold weather (by Atlanta standards) from the last week. Now I'm making an amigurumi "Fat Kitty" from Crochet Me. :) Light blue with embroidered eyes, since it's for a baby boy!