Category Archives: hat

free pattern: reversible ribbed hat

Here’s a pattern for the simple ribbed hat I made my husband for Christmas. One size will fit almost any adult because the ribbing is extra stretchy and it’s easy to add stripes and make it look store bought.

yarn: Debbie Bliss merino aran, less than 2 50gram balls of the main color with a small amount of two contrasting color for the stripes
needles: size 6 (4mm) 16″ circular and 6″ double points – I used needles 2 sizes smaller than recommended since ribbing is generally worked with smaller needles
size: 20inches unstretched, stretches to fit heads up to 24 inches
gauge: 10 stitches = 1.75″ unstretched in 2×2 ribbing

body of hat:

  1. cast on 100 stitches with the main color (I used the long-tail cast on)
  2. join in the round careful not to twist the stitches, mark the beginning of the round
  3. knit in 2×2 ribbing for 8 rows
  4. switch to a different color and knit 1 entire round (this makes the color change look neater on the right side)
  5. continuing with the new color, re-establish the 2×2 ribbing and knit 3 more rounds; there should be a total of 4 rounds in the new color
  6. switch back to the main color and knit 1 entire round, then re-establish the 2×2 ribbing and knit 5 more rounds for a total of 6 rounds of the main color
  7. switch to the second contrasting color, knit 1 round, re-establish 2×2 ribbing for 3 additional rounds for a total of 4 rounds in the second stripe
  8. switch back to the main color and knit 1 round, change to 2×2 ribbing and work until hat fits comfortably on the head (about 8 inches)

crown decreases: place a marker at the beginning of the round, the first two stitches should be knits, switch to double pointed needles when necessary – between round 5 and 7

repeat stitches between * and * until the end of the round, numbered instructions are for each round:

  1. *knit 2, purl2together, knit 2, purl 2*, there should be 87 stitches at the end of the round
  2. *knit 2, purl 1, knit 2, purl 2*
  3. *knit 2, purl 1, knit 2, purl 2*
  4. *knit 2, purl 1, knit 2, purl2together*, there should be 75 stitches at the end of the round
  5. *knit 2, purl 1* there should still be 75 stitches per round
  6. *knit 2, purl 1* there should still be 75 stitches per round
  7. *knit 2, knit a purl and knit together, knit 1*, [50 stitches at end of round]
  8. knit entire round
  9. *knit 2 together, knit 3* [40 stitches at end of round]
  10. *knit 2, knit 2 together* [30 stitches at end of round]
  11. *knit 2 together, knit 1* [20 stitches at end of round]
  12. *knit 2 together* [10 stitches at end of round]
  13. *knit 2 together* [5 stitches remain]

(note that decreases are staggered for the crown so there won’t be any obvious decrease lines – if you like the decrease lines, just line them up!)

Cut or break the yarn leaving a tail at least 10 ” long, thread a darning needle and draw the tail through the remaining 5 stitches to secure them. Weave in ends and enjoy!

The hat was a bit itchy after extended wear (hours) so I washed it with some shampoo and conditioner – it’s much softer now. I really enjoyed working with the Debbie Bliss merino aran yarn – it worked up beautifully on smaller needles than called for and has a nice tight twist which made it easy to knit without looking. I can tell this yarn will hold up wonderfully. With the wide array of colors, this might be my new favorite worsted weight yarn!

cross posted with my new blog


rhiannon’s braided cable hat – a free pattern

I wanted to make something special with the fabulous silk/merino yarn I got at the fingerlakes fiber festival. I didn’t have enough yarn for anything big so I made a hat which is perfect with the supersoft yarn; the braided cable is a variant of one I found in one of the Harmony guides I borrowed from my guild.

yarn: Steam Valley Hand Dyed Silk Yarn, the hat weighs 53 grams which is slightly more than half the skein
needles: size 8 (16″ and dpns)
gauge: 4.25 stitches and 6.5 rows per inch in stockinette

Pattern – I’m new to pattern writing so please let me know if this is easy to understand and if it turns out how I describe.

First I made the headband with an i-cord edging and braided cable. Then I grafted the edges of the headband together and made sure it fit over my head. Next, I calculated gauge in stockinette and measured the circumference of the headband to figure out how many stitches to pick up for the body of the hat. I picked up stitches from the top of the headband and knit in stockinette until it was time for the crown decreases. Since the theme here is braids and braids are usually done with 3 strands, I made the decreases at even thirds with 3 purl stitches between each set of decreases.

headband: provisionally cast on 15 stitches. The braided cable is over 6 stitches, there are 3 purl stitches on either side of the cable, and there are 3 i-cord stitches on the right hand side if you’re looking at the right side of the knitting. The idea is:


I usually slip purlwise so the loops are correctly oriented for untwisted knitting on the next row but do whatever you need to keep the i-cord stitches untwisted. Also, make sure you carry a lot of slack for the i-cord – if it’s too tight, it won’t fit over your head. My i-cord is slightly tighter than the rest of the headband which helps the hat fit snugly but comfortably.

In purple, are the stitches for the braided cable. Cabling will only happen on RS rows and I used the no-cable needle method – I’m linking to the tutorial Grumperina wrote because it’s the one I learned from but there are many many tutorials available.

cable pattern:

row 1 K6
row 2 P6
row 3 C4L K2 (the first 2 stitches cross left in front, the 3rd and 4th cross right in back, knit the last 2 plain)
row 4 P6
row 5 K6
row 6 P6
row 7 K2 C4R (knit the first 2 stitches plain, the 3rd and 4th cross left in back and the 5th and 6th cross right in front)
row 8 P6

Work the headband with the 6 stitch, 8 row cable pattern and i-cord edging until it goes around your head. Mine measured 23.5 inches when it was slightly stretched. If you can, try to end after row 8 of the cable pattern so when grafted, the braid is uninterrupted. Graft all the stitches together as they come in reverse stockinette, stockinette, or i-cord. For the i-cord, I grafted on the knit side and wove the end into the center so the i-cord curled around.

calculate number of stitches to pick up: try on the headband where you plan to wear the hat and measure the circumference at the i-cord. Mine was 23.5 inches and my gauge was 4.25 stitches per inch.

23.5 * 4.25 ~ 100 stitches

I placed markers at 4 equal intervals and picked up 25 stitches between each marker on the opposite side than the i-cord (this is the left side on my little chart above).

body: now that your stitches are picked up, knit in the round until you are ready for crown decreases (about 2.75 inches of stockinette or 4.75 inches from the i-cord edge). I always make my hats on 16″ circulars and without removing the needles try it on often – I know it’s time for crown decreases when the hat is long enough to cover my ears and the stitches don’t fall off the needle at the top of my head.

crown decreases: I decreased 6 stitches per row by decreasing 2 stitches every row at 3 places.

Place 3 markers evenly to mark the decreases. (between markers, there will be 33, 33, and 34 stitches – I don’t worry about the one extra stitch – it gets an extra decrease on the almost last row)
row 1: [K26, K2tog, P3, SSK] repeat 3 times until end of round.
At this point I usually ditch the markers since the purl stitches scream *decrease* at me.
row 2: [K24, K2tog, P3, SSK] 3 times
continue decreasing in the same places every row until there are 15 stitches left (they should be PPP KK in each of the 3 sections)
last row: [P3tog, sl1 k1 psso] 3 times, there will be 6 stitches left – break yarn, thread a darning needle and run the yarn through remaining stitches twice, weave in ends.

If anyone makes this – comment with a link to a picture so I can see what they all look like.

17Nov07: edited to fix a mistake in the cable pattern 

bicycle hat, part 2

I’ve had a couple comments requesting the bike chart I used for Mr. T’s bicycle hat so I figured out how to format it as a pdf and upload it to the blog.

Enjoy using the chart for bicycle hats or anything else. For a hat, I’d recommend sport or fingering weight yarn. Definitely check gauge because the double knitting ended up much looser than I’d expected.

bike chart

Click on the link above to open an Adobe pdf file containing the bike chart. This chart is free – please be nice 🙂

p.s. Mr. T got the iPhone today. We went to the AT&T store which was a huge mistake. There were only 25-30 people in front of us when we got there at 5:30 and a friend mentioned there were over 100 people at the Apple store so we stayed at AT&T. We waited….and waited…and waited. Our friend called back around 6:30 to brag about his new iPhone – he’d had dinner, gone back to the Apple store which miraculously had no line, and picked up his new phone. We continued to wait because how long could the 10 people in front of us really take……We didn’t get the phone until 7:30. After many hours of waiting, AT&T got half his number away from Verizon so he can turn on and play with the phone now but cannot receive calls. It seems very very cool and I can’t wait to order another for me and get that activated. The map feature is going to encourage spontaneous route changing and help us find restaurants and bike shops on our tandem bicycle honeymoon in just 2 weeks!

grape koolaid dyeing

I wanted to post something more interesting than moving and unpacking when I realized I had pictures of my grape koolaid hat I’d never blogged about. I dyed this yarn with the fruit loop yarn in the end of December and made a hat.

I started with this:

knitpicks bare peruvian wool

added some koolaid,

and got this:
IMG_2931grape koolaid hat

First, I made a 6 x 70 inch skein using the warp board Mr. T’s dad made me. I first saw such a warp board during one of my many google searches for dyeing stripes. Ysolda, along with Eunny described how to dye yarn in stripes. I also used yarns to dye for which I got for christmas to go with the warp board and the bare wool. To decide the length of the skein, I started knitting a hat out of the bare peruvian wool and then I unraveled it and measured to figure out that the average length of yarn I used for each row was 70 inches. My warp board was 35 inches wide so that wrapping the yarn from the left to the right and back to the left would be 70 inches. I wrapped exactly how Ysolda described in her warp board tutorial (click on the link above).

warp board

Next I decided what stripe pattern I wanted. The way I wrapped the yarn doesn’t give a long circular skein, it gives a long skein with two ends which is why the blue stripes frame the dark purple stripes even though I dyed equal lengths (2 x 70 or 140 inches) with each of the three colors.

Dark Purple: 3 packets grape and a pinch of tropical punch

Light Purple: < 1/2 packet grape

Light blue/purple: 1 packet ice blue lemonade and 1/2 packet grape.

Then I mixed the koolaid with minimal water in guinness pint glasses which hold more yarn than normal pint glasses because the top half is much wider than the bottom half (I dyed 100 grams in 3 pint glasses so ~34 grams each glass). I stuffed each section of wet yarn into the appropriate pint glass, put all the pint glasses into a pyrex pie pan, and stuffed the whole contraption into my microwave. I was impatient. I microwaved for a few minutes until everything was warm, waited for the yarn to cool, rinsed it, and let it dry. I mostly used the knitty tutorial for kool-aid dyeing although I modified it by using the pint glasses to dye all three colors at once.

IMG_2916 IMG_2913 IMG_3328

I just realized I only have a 50 gram ball to get through before I allow myself to dye more yarn. I think this  might be a good time to try finger-to-cuff mittens with a figure 8 caston. I’m scared to try a figure 8 caston with sock yarn until I’ve practiced.