Nalbound Winter Bonnet

Sometimes this blog is quiet for weeks on end, and then there are two posts in as many days….
I generally like having something on my head (which in many living history situations is lucky), but there is one thing I’ve never found neither comfortable nor attractive on me; the common knitted winter cap. I think they mess up the hair something terrible (I have very fine, silky hair, which is especially unmanageable during the winter), and, since I wear my hair up most of the time, it looks plain ridiculous with a modern cap over it. I had planned to make a winter cap of my own for years, with my usual hairstyles taken into consideration, but never got round to it. But now, over the past month or so, I have made one! I finished it last week, it’s been the project I’ve been working on while putting B to bed.
It’s nalbound from the same wool yarn as Tobias’ socks, no idea what the stitch is called. I had an idea to make it in a shape similar to that of a Regency bonnet, as they were made to fit over hair worn in buns, and frame the face nicely. Not sure how well I did on the bonnet shape, but I’m pretty pleased all the same. 
The bonnet has nalbound scallops round the edges, and is further decorated with embroidery in wool yarn, resembling a fantasy version of fir and berries. A little on the Mrs. Santa side perhaps, but I like it.

The bonnet can also be worn with the brim turned back; I’m not altogether certain which look I prefer yet. 
What do you think?

18 thoughts on “Nalbound Winter Bonnet

  1. Vad fin den är! Och den klär dig perfekt. Du är gjord för gammaldags kläder, ingen tvekan om det.

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  2. Very pretty! I love the embroidery, which makes it very charming.

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  3. I love it! I want one exactly like it, now. I like both looks, with the brim extended and also it turned back. The colors and embroidery are so very pretty and remind me of something from Little Dorrit, or some similar work of literature. By the way, you have very pretty eyes!

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  4. I love it! Did you use a pattern or did you just make it up as you went along? I like it without the brim being folded back. And I don't think the embroidery is very Mrs. Clause at all. It's very pretty. Good job!

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  5. it looks very pretty, I like the colour

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  6. this looks so cute and cozy!! i love it! i personally like the brim as is, not turned back, but that's just me. either way it is an adorable bonnet!

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  7. Thank you ladies! I made it up as I went along, so there was no knowing how it'd turn out before it was inished 😉

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  8. Denne er veldig fin! Men hvordan nålbinder man fram og tilbake???

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  9. Liv Elin: jag gjorde tre lösa stygn i slutet av varje rad, och vände sedan och nålband åt andra hållet. De tre stygnen vrider sig lite, men inte så mycket att man tänker på det 🙂

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  10. Your hair is so lovely, I like it better folded back!

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  11. WHAT is Nalband?????

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  12. It's a very old technique, predating knitting by centuries, of making small items of clothing like mittens and socks. It also works well for other things. It's often used by viking and (at least Scandinavian) medieval reenactors.

    You use a flat, blunt needle (usually made from wood or bone) and “sew” stitches. It takes longer than knitting, and you can't just unravel the stitches if you've made a mistake, but have to sew them loose, one by one. It does however have the benefit of not unraveling if you get a hole in your nalbound item either.

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  13. I have not read your blog in a mighty long time it seems because I was unaware of your little baby boy addition! CONGRATS! You have no idea who I am, as before when I read your blog I did so without commenting. Anyway, I enjoy reading about you and all the wonderful things you have going on. Thanks for letting me peek into your thoughts. I love the cap/bonnet by the way! The embroidery is beautiful!

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  14. That bonnet looks great 🙂
    For us scandinavians It is really strange that there still is people who has never heard about nalbinding :))
    (just finished two hats, pair of mittens and making socks)

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  15. Virginia Miller, Campton, NH 17 December, 2013 — 23:19

    I love your nalbinding! I might have to make a similar cap, so graceful… One question: does it stay on? or do you need to tie it on? I'd prefer not to tie anything under my chin.

    Thanks for sharing your pictures!

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  16. As long as it's just a moderate wind it stays on. I've added ties for windy days, but mostly because my ears get cold when it's windy, and the ties keep the bonnet closer to my head. It would stay put pretty well beeing pinned to the hair if you don' want ties.

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  17. I'm loving it. It's so very Jane Eyre or Dickensian..
    I'm learning nålbinding this year! I'm mad I haven't learned last year!
    Keep up your incredible work. Jennifer

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