If you ever buy anything from Discount Yarn Sale.com, be sure to throw in one of the "Mystery Bags." I can't remember everything that was in mine, but I know I made my mother's Mother's Day socks from a skein of Hill Country Sock Yarn that was divine, I have a jazzy ball of some novelty ribbon yarn that will make a snazzy scarf for someone, and I got a ball of Debbie Bliss Cashmere yarn in a rich, chocolate brown. Not too shabby, when I thought I might get a tangle of twine and a wad of worsted (probably in orange...SHUDDER!)
So I pulled a freebie pattern from Ravelry.com and knit up this cute little beret. It's knit from the top down, which permitted me to use virtually every inch of the ball without the risk of not being able to finish the item. It's true I didn't get to make it all full and "slouchy," but I don't have a long mane to tuck under it so it's fine. And boy, is it ever soft! I started it on size 10 1/2 bamboo double-pointed needles and eventually switched to circulars. I was really looking for a pinwheel pattern (like one my friend Rabecca made which I envy mightily) but I got pieces of pie. It's still a pretty stitch pattern.
I was actually making this for Ashley, but she has informed me that she doesn't like hats. I can hardly get her to wear anything I make for her. Maybe that's one reason I like charity knitting--they are overjoyed at whatever I churn out!