Dear readers: you are amazing. Wow. There have already been more responses than I can keep up with--so thank you very much. I'll leave this up for reference, but with the text crossed out. Hopefully, the pattern will soon be available, if the test knits work out.
Lately, more patterns have been generated here at chezTECH. The latest of these is a ladies' cap called "Spice Road." It's a pretty neat pattern: it's knit flat in stockinette, all in one piece, utilizing a lot of short rows. Then, the fabric is folded, welted, seamed.
I named it that after the fabled spice road of old, because it has three design features found in central Asian headgear: a wide smooth expanse over the brow, a little brim which runs around the top, and a turban-like fold in the back.
One problem is making sure TECHknitting patterns are correct. Lately, I've been doing all the test knitting myself. Yet, this is not a great idea. Because I know how the item ought to come out, I'm afraid I'd gloss over any error in the pattern. Spice Road is, I think, ready for release, but I wonder if any my lovely TECHknitting readers out there would consider test knitting it first? The pattern is designed for intermediate knitters and above (but a bold advanced beginner could probably manage).
Here's the deal: It would be great to have a three (or so) test knits. So, to those volunteers, I'll send the pattern as a PDF. You buy the yarn or use up stash, and knit the cap by January 31, 2012. Once you've gotten back to me with your comments, and once the cap is posted as a project on your Ravelry page, I will send you a $25.00 honorarium. This will hopefully cover your yarn cost.
$25.00 for test knitting isn't a lot, and in an ideal world, it would be more, for sure. However, in this non-ideal world, any money from the sale of the Spice Road cap pattern over and above the honoraria is instead slated to go towards snowpants, socks, boots and science club funds, all of which the local schools around here are finding in precious short supply.
Tech details: a single 100 gram skein of worsted weight yarn will suffice. Common yarns in this weight include Cascade 220, Wool of the Andes, Northampton Valley Yarn, Pattons Classic wool, and the like. The cap would best be made in wool--synthetics, especially "soft" synthetics, may not have the body required for the details of this cap to work out. The gauge is 5 st/in, 7 rows/in, pretty standard for this weight of yarn. A circular needle 22" or longer is required for knitting stockinette back and forth at the required gauge (there are possibly too many sts on the needle at one time for a single-pointed needle to work). A 16" circular needle a size smaller is also required, as is a crochet hook of size proportional to the yarn. A steam iron will be handy for blocking.
Bottom line: if you are an intermediate knitter or above, if you are interested in being a test knitter for Spice Road ladies' cap, and if you can can afford to do so under these terms, write to me at the e-mail address under "profile," at the top of the right side bar. We'll work out the details to our mutual satisfaction, and then I'll send you the PDF pattern. And for everyone else, if the test knits work out, the pattern for the Spice Road cap will be for sale: this winter, hopefully.