Monday, August 29, 2011

Trilby — A Study in Clothesline Crochet

This Trilby hat is a study in a corded crochet technique better known as “Clothesline Crochet.” This technique is actually the basic building block of Irish filigree crochet, where in a stiff cord is carried along a single-crochet row. Here’s a link to a quick tutorial.

The hat is eponymous with the tone-deaf heroine, Trilby O’Ferrall, from the George du Maurier novel (1894). Originally worn as a woman’s hat, it’s retro-popularity was resurrected by the likes of leading men Frank Sinatra, James Bond, of course The Blues Brothers and my favorite shady pathologist, Dexter.

The Tribly is similar to the Fedora but with a firm shorter brim up-turned in the back. I made this crochet hat with a more prominent grade to the front and an oblique oval crown instead of a classic teardrop.

This Trilby is made with Classic Elite Provence (100% mercerized cotton). I came up with a modified single crochet stitch that I call “Straw Braid” — it really does resemble the fine braid used on straw hats. The Clothesline Crochet technique keeps the crown and brim firm — a thicker cord on the crown than on the brim.

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