Windsor Headband from Scraps

The Windsor Headband (or Turban) is an older Good Night Day pattern from Tara-Lynn Morrison. I had just a bit of leftover recycled yarn from my High Cliff hat project and thought I might could eke out one of these with the remainder. I have enjoyed my other headband from Good Night Day and thought this would be equally useful on winter hikes or dog walks. 

I’ve never made a twist style turban like this and I actually had to pause at the directions and think a minute before continuing. That doesn’t happen often, after so many years of knitting, but I love when it does! There’s a mini high when that feeling of “Huh?” is followed by an “Oh, I get it!” 

Honestly, it really doesn’t take that much to baffle me. I can go straight from knitting intricate Fair Isle to twisting the join of a sweater knit in the round…. and continuing to knit for a an inch. That’s not a technique I recommend.

As for good techniques that might be new to you, smaller projects like this are a good way to try them out. Stuff like provisional cast on, cables, a three needle bind off, or Kitchener stitch are easy enough to add to the pattern directions, if it isn’t already included. If you can’t figure it out, the project is small enough that you won’t be ripping out hours and hours of work. You can just start over, knitting as directed, with no real time loss.

Details: I used size, US 10 needles and leftovers from my High Cliff leftovers that are just recycled yarn from a mall scarf or something.

Windsor was in the second Good Night Day knitting booklet along with 5 other patterns, of which a few are discontinued. The rest of the patterns are available as singe digital patterns or as part of Tara’s more recent larger Good Night Day book

Windsor is discontinued, but Tara’s Simcoe headband may be a good substitute for you, though you will need to double your bulky yarn or just use a super-bulky. For the twist turban look, there are a few free versions on Ravelry by other designers. I like Two of Wands’ Thermal Twist Headwrap, which is free on her blog and Ysolda’s Northwind Headband

But if you’re feeling like branching out and trying something off-pattern, you could try figuring out a similar headband on your own. Incorporate the Cast on and Bind off of your choice, with a cable or not. There could be bobbles or embroidery, lace or textural stitches. Just an idea. I knit plenty from patterns but once in a while I want to set aside screens or books and just use my head. Yes, the very one that lets me knit a twisted sweater join. It is just soothing to escape from info and advertisement overload. (Using books and magazines helps with this, too.) 

My few examples would be one of my first projects the Plain Jane bag on one end of the winging it spectrum then my two Mrs. Darcy sweaters, here and here that are all the way on the other end. Then there’s the cowl I made up and posted as My First Pattern! that was also my last pattern: the Stripe Ed Cowl. I guess the latest would be the Plaid Monster I made a couple of years ago, but isn’t like the vertical stripes and have yet to fix them. The point is, every once in a while it’s therapeutic to just figure something you want out on your own. It restructures something in my soul.

My most recent self-made project is a vest of more #RecycleReknitRemake leftovers that I am working whenever I have time. I’ll post about it soon. It will probably not be as smooth and professional looking as if I used a pattern, but for this kind of thing, I don’t care. It is a treat for my brain. So, more posts about the plaid sweater and the vest will be coming.

Have you filled a need in your wardrobe all on your own, off-pattern? Did it work out for you?

I also plan and discuss this headband on the My So-Called Handmade Life youtube channel: Episodes 54: My Pets Run the Show and 55: Ms. Fixit.

More awkward knit selfies on Instagram, ravelry, and flickr.

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