January 2009

I always swore I’d never get into the aww-dorableness of baby clothes. Unfortunately, I forgot to have all my friends swear never to have children, so I’ve now found myself a little stuck. I’ve managed to salvage my dignity by refusing to make anything in pink or blue, so here’s an adjustable-size baby hat in gold and tan. I decided to use just an i-cord tassel to avoid having a possibly detachable pompom (which might be a choking hazard).

Baby hat with i-cord tassel.

Baby hat with i-cord tassel.

Needles: Size 5, both 16″ circ and DPN

Gauge: 10.5 stitches & 14 rows = 2″ in stockinette stitch

Yarn: Plymouth Yarn’s Jeannee, 51% cotton 49% acrylic, worsted weight, or any other machine washable yarn. Colors shown are 0031 tan and…um, sorry, lost the label on the lighter color.

The hat shown weighs 38 grams and the skein of yarn weighs 50 for 110 yards, so that’s about 90 yards for the size shown total yardage.

Size: The size shown is a 14″ hat and it’s shown on a 15″ butter tub, since I couldn’t find any babies around the house.

Sizing for your baby (or butter tub): It’s recommended to make a hat approximately 1 1/2″ smaller than what it’s intended to fit.  However, a neat feature of babies is that they continue to grow, so if the hat is too big, it will fit a little later on. I strongly suggest not going any smaller than 13″ for the hat (to fit 14.5″ head) because babies do not shrink, even in hot water.  This is especially important if baby’s parents have big heads.

Anyways, to begin.

Cast on in the tan color:

# of stitches Finished size To fit up to head size Age
66 12 7/8″ 14 3/8″ small newborn
72 14″ 15 1/2″ large newborn
78 15 1/8″ 16 7/8″ newborn-3 mo
84 16 1/4″ 17 3/4″ 3-6 mo
90 17 3/8″ 18 7/8″ 6-12 mo

Cast on, join in the round, and then work 6 rows of K3 P3 ribbing.

Work one round knit.

Switch to main (lighter) color. If you want the optional stripe, don’t cut the darker yarn. Work 2 rounds knit.

Optional stripe: Work 2 rounds knit in darker color. Switch back to lighter yarn. (YOu can cut the end of the darker color now to weave in.)

Continue in stockinette stitch until hat measures (3.5″, 4″, 4.5″, 5″, 5.5″). Include the ribbing in this measurement.


Place 6 markers evenly spaced. (This will be every 11, 12, 13, 14, 15 stitches.)

Round 1: After each marker, K2tog. Knit rest of stitches.

Round 2 & 3: Knit every stitch.

Repeat rounds 1-3 until 6 stitches remain. Work i-cord for 3″ and bind off. Weave in ends. Tie i-cord in knot.

Hat, laid flat.

Hat, laid flat.

Hat front (brim turned up)

Hat front (brim turned up)

A plain hat I made in December.

A plain hat I made in December.

Karaoke hat

Karaoke hat

Here’s a hat made with Karaoke yarn, the Loopy pattern. Karaoke is only 100 yards so as you can see it’s a bit short and doesn’t have enough brim to turn up. The next hat I’m making with this yarn I’m using a little extra Cascade to make a plain black ribbed brim.

And while I’m not putting a bun in the oven or whatever the euphemism is these days, I am making this:

Baby blanket

Baby blanket

Yarn: Baby Bee Sweet Delight, colorway “Ladybug” used double

Needles: Size 10 circ

CO 130

Work 5 rows garter stitch

Work 5 stitches at each end in garter stitch (K every row). On the middle 120 stitches, work a 5-stitch wide basketweave pattern, switching knits and purls every 7 rows.

I’ll post more pics when I’m done.

There’s nothing yuckier than a wet, snowy, muddy hat, unless it’s a wet, snowy, muddy hat being hung up by the brim to dry, and stretching out to a saggy mess.

Not that I’d really know, as we haven’t had any snow this year, and precious little rain. (No, I’m not bitter.) But for those of you in more fortunate climes, here is your solution!

Not JUST a pink hat.

I'm not bitter from the lack of snow.

Looks perfectly normal from the front, right?

From the top.

From the top.

Here, too. It’s a plain top-down hat with six increase points… and a trick:

And a loop for hanging!

And a loop for hanging!

I’ll add more in-progress pics in a second post (and for a second hat), but here’s the pattern:


Yarn:  Cascade 220 (I used Quatro in pinks)

Needles: Size 4, DPN and 16″ circ

Gauge: 14 rows & 11 stitches = 2″

Making the hanging loop:

Provisionally cast on 6 stitches. I use the crochet method: crochet a few stitches more than needed (say, 10) and then pick up stitches through the loops on the back of the crochet chain. If you aren’t sure which is the “back” of the chain, leave your last “working” loop free instead of binding off, and then turn the chain so it points down, like this:

The wrong and right ways to turn the crochet chain

The wrong and right ways to turn the crochet chain

So, poke your needle through and pick up 6 stitches, and then knit about 3″ of i-cord, like so:

knit until you have enough for a loop.

knit until you have enough for a loop.

Then take out the provisional yarn, poking in a second DPN as you do so:

remove the provisional yarn; slip to DPN

remove the provisional yarn; slip to DPN

The last step is to pick up both DPNs, make sure you’re using the working end of the yarn (not the long tail for weaving in) and knit a full round of all 12 stitches, while moving the stitches to 3 DPNs (4 on each).  You should end up with this:

The loop and the first round of the hat.

The loop and the first round of the hat.

That was round 1 of the hat crown, by the way.

Hat crown (continued):

Round 2:

*K1, YO, K1* repeat 6 times. Total 18 stitches.

Round 3:

*K1, knit through the back loop on the YO, YO, K1* repeat 6 times = 24 stitches.

Rounds 4-19: Continue knitting through the back loop on each YO you come to, and then YO immediately after that, for a total of 6 increases each round. At the end of round 19, you should have 108 stitches. The crown of the hat is now complete.

If you need a different number of stitches for a different size head or different gauge, then just stop early or continue as needed, it won’t matter for this pattern at all.

Hat body:

Knit every stitch for desired length. I chose 6″ because that goes down over the ears.

Turn-up ribbed brim:

After your hat is the desired length, do K3 P3 ribbing every round for 15 rounds (about 2″) or as desired.

Bind off in pattern (that is, as you bind off, knit or purl each stitch as appropriate).

Block as desired and wear!

Needle size short DPNs long DPNs 12″ circ 16″ circ
2 5 4 1
3 5
4 5 5 1
5 5 5 1 1
7 5 1 1
8 5 5

Today I bought the size 3 and 4 long DPNs. Short ones are fine for socks and finishing off, but if you don’t have a 12″ circ, you can’t get very far on a hat with just the short DPNs.

Ideal hat combinations:

Shorts + 12″ + 16″

Shorts + Longs + 16″

At $16 for the 12″ needles and $5 for the DPNs, it looks like I’ll only get the short circs in sizes I really, really want.

I started knitting on size 10’s and have been working my way downward. I’m not sure why I took the big leap down from 7’s, but I haven’t bought a set of 6’s yet…

Pocket in use.

Pocket in use.



Rare--me without glasses. Note nose dent. 🙂


Glass head, 1" railing, 8' drop. Eeek!

Glass head, 1" railing, 8' drop. Eeek!


Stranding-- INSIDE of hat

Stranding-- INSIDE of hat

Okay, it really didn’t look that good before it was blocked. Want to see it flat, inside out?


stranding, laid flat (inside out)

stranding, laid flat (inside out)

That’s about all I have to say about that.

I have a trick I use to make sure that my stranded knitting doesn’t tighten up too much.

First, of course, I try my best to knit a little more loosely than normal on every stitch.

Second, whenever I change from one color to another, I put the needle in the next loop, and then make a SPECIAL effort to stretch out the stitches on the RIGHT needle. Here are two pictures:

Normal stretching-- no color change for next stitch.

Normal stretching-- no color change for next stitch.

Color change-- stretch!

Color change-- stretch!

I actually stretch it a little more than this, but this is what I can manage with only one hand.

So, it’s a month until Valentine’s Day, and what better way to celebrate frustration, disappointment, and the reminder of crushed dreams than with a Valentine’s hat? Festively pink skulls combine with bleached-pale hearts to symbolize your true feelings.


Dead Heart

Dead Heart


Sizes: Small to average adult woman’s head (20″ completed circumference), average to large adult woman’s head (21.5″ completed circumference).

Gauge: 14 rows and 10.5 stitches = 2″

Needles: Size 5, 16″ or 20″ circular and DPNs (or just DPNs if you like that kind of thing)

Yarn: Cascade 220 in black, dark pink, light pink, and cream.  Approximate yardage is 100-115 or so yards of black plus 15-20 or so in the three contrast colors. (In other words, you could get 2 hats out of one hank of black– MAYBE. I had 3 INCHES of black yarn left over after making this.)


Cast on 104 (112) and join in circle. Work K2 P2 ribbing for 11 rounds.

Optional step: When finished with the ribbing, work 1 round purl. This makes a nicer fold line to turn up the ribbing.


Work 11 rounds plain stockinette in black.

Begin chart with black and cream. Work X’s in cream  and .’s in black. Chart repeats 13 times around head for smaller size, 14 times for larger size:

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
. . X X X . . .   11
. X X X X X . .   10
X . . X . . X .    9
X . . X . . X .    8
X X X X X X X .    7
X X X . X X X .    6
. X X X X X . .    5
. . X X X . . .    4
. X . . . X . .    3
. . X X X . . .    2
. . . . . . . .    1


Begin chart with black and light pink. Chart repeats 13 times for small, 14 for large:
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
. X . . . X . .
X X X . X X X .
X X X X X X X .
X X X X X X X .
. X X X X X . .
. . X X X . . .
. . . X . . . .
. . . . . . . .

Repeat skull chart with the dark pink and black.


Small size ONLY: PM, K2 tog, K 16, PM, K 17, PM, K 17, PM, K2tog, K 16, PM, K 17, PM, K 17. Total 102 stitches remain. 

Large size ONLY: PM, K2 tog, K 17, PM, K2tog, K17, PM, K18, PM, K2tog, K17, PM, K2tog, K17, PM, K18. Total 108 stitches remain.

Both sizes: K2tog after each marker. When 6 stitches remain, bind off and run yarn tail through, or graft stitches together. 


Hat comes halfway down the ears.

Hat comes halfway down the ears.



Block hat as desired and sulk enjoy!


Waiting for Susan B. Anthony's birthday (2/15) and discount chocolate!

Waiting for Susan B. Anthony's birthday (2/15) and discount chocolate!

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