Friday, January 4, 2008

My Favorite Hat

Over the course of the past several years I've made maybe half a dozen hats, and all of them have been variations on a very simple pattern. My favorite of the three that I've kept for myself, however, is a pattern that I will probably repeat. It's a simple ribbed "beanie" style hat. This is definitely a pattern that you can play around with; experiment with different needles and yarns and figure out what you like best.

For my hat, I used two strands of Caron® Simply Soft® Tweed (I used black, but they have several other fun colors) on US size 9 (5.5mm) straight needles.

Like I said, this pattern is incredibly simple. You're essentially making a cylinder and then pulling the top together. For this hat, I cast on 34 stitches. I then worked a simple pattern:

Rows 1 and 2: Knit
Rows 3 and 4: Knit 2, purl 30, knit 2

I repeated this pattern until the hat was long enough to wrap around my head. I made it a little on the snug side to allow for stretching over time. Once the hat was long enough, I bound off all the stitches, leaving a nice long tail. To finish, I wove the tail in and out through one of the long sides, pulled it tight, and then whip-stitched the short sides together. If it's easier to keep things lined up, you can stitch the short sides together first and then pull the top tight.

The hat is long enough that I usually fold up a brim that's about an inch high. However, it also works well folded down over my ears on those particularly chilly winter days here in Minnesota!

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