Last Thanksgiving, I bought a small skein of light-as-air Abbey Alpaca at the Minneapolis Holidazzle. It was a pleasure to work with, even though I frogged the headband a couple times. I finally found the right tension and perfect little embellishment. The result was the perfect Christmas gift for my little sister, who braves Chicago public transportation all winter long.
At first, I thought a tighter headband would stay on better. I tensioned the yarn much tighter than usual, and ended up with a finished headband that was more like a tight sportsband. All of the softness was lost this way, and I realized this wouldn't work when I tried it on. The next attempt was a little better, but I reknitted it again to make it even looser. With a simple 3K, 3P ribbing and wider band, it stays on well and retains that cloudy Alpaca softness.
The embellishment is a cool spiral flower by Brittany from B Hooked Crochet. She has both a video and text instructions on her site. This version is the medium size, but with a smaller weight yarn than she used in her example. I also made a large version to test the pattern (bottom photo). It's easy to replicate after a few petals. I sewed it on using the same alpaca yarn, stitching in the center and at each end. I did not block either flower, but let them curl naturally.