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Project

Knit Hat

Introduction

Perfectly choreographed, the movement of yarn between two needles yields hats, scarves, sweaters, and mittens as if by magic. But what looks at first glance like a complicated trick is in fact a surprisingly easy technique to learn. Knitting is nothing more than the simple act of transferring a row of stitches from one needle to another. Repeat this process, and a length of fabric takes shape.

You will find several basic knitting techniques in How to Knit. The first time you knit, the needles may seem to have a life of their own. Through repetition, though, your hands will memorize the motions. Before you begin, practice with a pair of medium-size needles (such as U.S. size 8) and an inexpensive, medium-weight yarn, such as a cotton sport yarn. Always master one stitch before moving to the next. For a head start, ask an experienced knitter to cast on for you. Then skip ahead to the knit and purl lessons, and return to the cast-on when you feel comfortable. If you have a friend who can knit, watching her work might help you. Once you have mastered the stitches, try our hat pattern for specific instructions. Before long, you'll be curled up knitting, accompanied by the soothing click-click-click of your needles.

Hat sizing: 20-inch circumference (adult medium); gauge: 8 stitches and 12 rows in stockinette = 4 inches.

Scarf: We used a U.S. size 20 needle, so we only cast on 14 stitches.

Materials

  • U.S. size 15 needles
  • 1 skein chunky wool in red
  • 1 skein mohair in beige
  • For scarf: Bulky cream-colored wool with a fine light-blue mohair
  • U.S. size 20 needle

Steps

  1. Step 1

    Cast on 40 stitches, working with both yarns together. Knit 2 rows. Work in stockinette (knit 1 row, purl the next; repeat) for 6 inches.

  2. Step 2

    Next row: Knit 3, knit 2 together (see "Decreasing" below). Next row: Purl. Next row: Knit 2, knit 2 together. Next row: Purl. Next row: Knit 1, knit 2 together. Next row: Purl. Bind off. Snip yarn, leaving 8-inch tail.

  3. Step 3

    Thread tail through yarn needle, and pass needle through bind-off stitches and tighten; sew up seam as shown below. We used contrasting yarn to make the seaming visible, but you should use the same yarn you knit with.

  4. Step 4

    Begin at the top, using a yarn needle to pick up the horizontal bar between the first and second stitches. Cross to the other side and pick up corresponding bar. Continue from side to side until finished.

  5. Step 5

    There are many ways to decrease, but this is the easiest. The method is the same as the knit stitch, except two stitches are knit at the same time.

  6. Step 6

    Insert right needle upward and into two stitches on left needle, entering lower stitch first, then upper one.

  7. Step 7

    Wrap yarn behind right needle and then forward between the needles, as when knitting.

  8. Step 8

    Tip right needle downward, catching wrapped piece and drawing it down through the two loops on left needle. Use right needle to slide this loop upward and off left needle. You have now decreased one stitch.

  9. Step 9

    Cast on, working with both yarns together. Work in 1 x 1 rib (knit 1, purl 1; repeat across row) for the length of the scarf. Bind off. Weave in ends.

Source
Martha Stewart Living, February 2003

Reviews (60)

  • SusanAdele 15 Nov, 2011

    You can only see the scarf in the pic, not the hat. The second pic is ok... but it's more how to end it... would like to see the hat when complete on the model. thank you. :)

  • Kb2121 2 Sep, 2011

    Can we see a better photo for the hat?

  • Tiffany_Sun 11 Nov, 2010

    We've added the scarf directions to the bottom of the article. Knit away! -Tiffany Sun, Online Editor

  • RechsPieces 11 Nov, 2010

    I'm with the rest of the commenters: Pattern for the scarf please!

  • wallygator 10 Nov, 2010

    I agree completely. Love the scarf.

  • hobie117 9 Nov, 2010

    I can't see the picture of the hat! Would love the directions for the scarf!!

  • hobie117 9 Nov, 2010

    I can't see the picture of the hat! Would love the directions for the scarf!!

  • Katjewave 9 Nov, 2010

    I'm with kipsnow. I would love to see what the hat looks like.

  • klpsnow 7 Nov, 2010

    Nice picture of a scarf! Too bad they didn't really show the hat!

  • lildevilious 16 Feb, 2010

    just finished this hat and loved the easy no brainer type of knitting. increase the length to 8 and it could be a 9 but looks good for the girls. am going to try to do a guy's with a ribbed cuff and do it on the rounds

  • lildevilious 16 Feb, 2010

    thank u so much for very simple way of using bags and bags of wool. the heads of quesnel bc will be much warmer next winter.

  • craftyoneIllinois 4 Jan, 2010

    Could someone please tell me what yarn is used for the scarf.

  • asweetp 27 Jul, 2009

    I finally made this hat and loved how it turned out! This is a great way to use scrap yarn and all those funky fibers that are milling around the stash.

  • lmauck 27 Jun, 2009

    can someone tell me how to do the decreasing rows? do i, for example, do I "knit 3, knit 2 tog"

  • sewswell 18 Jan, 2009

    i saw the earlier post with the scarf directions, but does anyone know what yarn they used for the scarf pictured? for the hat, you can vary the number of stitches depending on your yarn combination. I have done some with 44 and 50 stitches. I had to go to a #17 needle to get anything to work with 40 stitches.

  • ferlie 14 Jan, 2009

    I am hoping that s you knit these hats and scaves you remembber to make some for your logal shelter. This is something that is needed these cold days. Ontario, Canada

  • ssfmg 12 Jan, 2009

    I used Patons Bohemian yarn on size 8mm/US11 needles and it is too small but will fit a child perfectly! I am going to reknit this one but knit more than 6 inches and it should fit fine. Bohemian is really nice for this toque. Has anyone tried the corn yarn?

  • susanwhite 11 Jan, 2009

    Thanks twingirl for the info about decreasing. That was my question also.

  • twingirl 11 Jan, 2009

    I noticed in the instructions, when you're decreasing, that it only says "knit 3, knit 2 together" but it doesn't say "repeat across row" (and so on for subsequent decreasing rows) I assumed that was the case, and it turned out fine, so I'm just passing that along to others. I found this pattern was really easy and really fun, and it turned out cute. I'll be making more, and probably some scarves as well. ! Hello from Vancouver, Canada!

  • bonnoslobbo 8 Jan, 2009

    Have any of you out there used the new bamboo yarn? It seems SO soft and nice. The colors are limited, however.

  • bonnoslobbo 8 Jan, 2009

    I had a superb 4th grade teacher who taught us to knit, to embroider, and to crochet. I knitted two simple sweaters that year that I actually WORE. We also learned about the chemistry of baking long before the there was Alton Brown on Food Network! We brought our baked goods from home but before sharing we had to give a report to explain our recipe and methods and define terms such as "creaming", "folding", "Farenheit", etc. I can STILL knit, embroider, AND crochet! Thanks, Mrs. Baucum!!!

  • sewswell 8 Jan, 2009

    the cotton was only for practice. the hat calls for chunky wool and mohair. further down the comments, there are also directions for the scarf.

  • klpsnow 8 Jan, 2009

    I'm surprised that they suggest cotton yarn to a beginner. Cotton isn't as elastic as animal fibers, so it's not as pleasurable or as easy to work, nor as warm for a winter hat. I would recommend a good basic wool or my newest obsession, alpaca (especially if you have aversion to sheep's wool).

  • Alysyn 8 Jan, 2009

    Forgot to add, that when you knit in the round, you don't have to do any of the purl rows, which makes the project go faster! I have changed a lot of sweater patterns to get the front and back put together and knitted on the round until I have to split for sleeves, just because I hate purling so much!

  • Alysyn 8 Jan, 2009

    If you like knitting on the round better, this is a really quick knitted cap. I like it because it has no seam up the back. It would probably work on one of the round looms, but I have never used one to know for sure.
    http://www.wrenross.com/designs.htm

  • Debbiecakes08 8 Jan, 2009

    I have the knitting looms how would you make this hat? Does anyone have a pattern for this hat using the loom?
    Thank you
    Debbie

  • euni 8 Jan, 2009

    I think the scarf could easily be made from the same yarn/needles. Cast on 12 to 14 stitches, depending upon the desired width of the scar. Work in stockinette stitch until the scarf is as long as desired. Not sure how much yarn this would use as I am just "guesstimating" how many stitches to cast on. See you later. I am on the way to the yarn shop. Happy knitting

  • meadresearch 8 Jan, 2009

    Oh, I wish to knit. lol. I learned a tiny bit in high school a looooong time ago. Soon.

  • blkshep 8 Jan, 2009

    knit in stockinette stitch applies to two needle knitting (where there is a right side and wrong side) Knit on the right side (side that shows) and purl across the wrong side (inside of garment). Most commercial sweaters are knit in stockinette stitch.
    Good luck...knitting is very relaxing, fun and a great way to meet new friends.

  • LaLaAndrew 8 Jan, 2009

    Will someone tell me what, "Work in stockinett" means. I haven't knitted since I was a child and made a pair of bedroom shoes. Hate to invest in the materials unless I think I can do it. Thanks! Would also like the directions for the scarf.

  • di-novak 8 Jan, 2009

    To belovdofgd: You didn't say what size needles you used, or type of yarn. Your way sounds like it's easier, and a fun way to make hats for children. Di

  • belovedofgd 8 Jan, 2009

    I make these for kids all the time with a circular needle and make them look like veggies. Cast on 72 stitches and knit around for 4". Then decrease each row, k7, k2tog. They are adorable!!

  • boonedesigns 8 Jan, 2009

    Even easier knitting.
    I can't figure out Knitting but I cheat using a knitting loom. They are great about $11 for a set at walmart or other stores with crafts. I have made hats that look identical of this one in about a couple hours. Scarfs in a few nights while watching TV. They are so easy and wonderful for a non-knitter. I made the cutest baby hats, adult hats

  • regijh 8 Jan, 2009

    Does anyone know how to calculate the pattern to make it for a child?

  • ehuber 8 Jan, 2009

    Does anyone know what specific yarns were used for the hat and scarf in the photo? Someone posted that the scarf pattern was from MS MS Holiday Handmade Gifts special mag from 2006. Unfortunately, I don't have this pub. Perhaps the hat was also in that issue. It may mention the yarns that were used.

  • leolisa 8 Jan, 2009

    I noticed someone asked how much yarn would be needed for the pattern? I knit alot of hats without using patterns and for that type of hat 80-90 yards should be more than enough. I usually knit in the round to avoid the seam however. But this seems similar to rolled brim hats I've made.

  • colleenroche 8 Jan, 2009

    this hat's adorable, but i want to make that scarf!!

  • lbuser 8 Jan, 2009

    Does anyone have Crochet instructions for this hat or for this type of hat? I don't know how to knit but I would love to try this in crochet.

  • kayzie2 1 Jan, 2009

    The amount of yarn is listed as "You will need: U.S. size 15 needles, 1 skein chunky wool in red, 1 skein mohair in beige." for the hat.

  • jojo13 4 Dec, 2008

    I went to a knitting store to purchase yarn for this hat. The owner told me that she could not establish "how much yarn" to sell me as the yardage was not given. Could you tell the amount of yarn needed for this pattern as I would really like to make this hat.

  • MarthaRules93 11 Jun, 2008

    The only thing I have knitted before this was a scarf, so this was great for just beginning! Accept I used a super thick yarn so it was hard to knit with but it was worth it cause the hats superr warm!

  • asweetp 18 Mar, 2008

    You can't get any easier than this! If you have never knit a hat before, you need to try this one. This is also a great stash buster! I used thee different novelty yarns (a ribbon, a boucle, and a suede-type), adjusted my needle size to get the recommended gauge, and the hat knitted up beautifully!

  • luvs2knit 21 Feb, 2008

    I love this pattern. It is SO easy and the hats are incredibly warm. I ended up making two of them in red and white for gifts for Valentines Day. Will definitely be making more of them next winter.

  • LowellGal 27 Jan, 2008

    I'm so excited - I just made my first knit hat! I never knit anything more challenging than a scarf, but I saw these directions and decided to give it a go. I bought the needles and yarn this afternoon, and voila! I knew I needed a larger size, so without really knowing what to do, I cast on 45 stitches (instead of the recommended 40) and knit and purl'ed for 6-1/2" (instead of the recommended 6") and it was perfect! Hmmm, hat

  • LowellGal 27 Jan, 2008

    I'm so excited - I just made my very first knit hat! I never knit anything more challenging than a scarf, but I saw these directions and decided to give it a go. I bought the needles

  • Mary0521 25 Jan, 2008

    Simplest scarf is a rib scarf that won't curl and is reversible - use same yarn and needles - cast on 16 stitches - k1, p1 across the row. Repeat this row for as long as you want the scarf to be then bind off gently. Will look like the one in the picture and it's fun and easy. Works for both men and women too. Adjust the pattern to any yarn. Cast on an even number of stitches making it whatever width and length that suits you.

  • simaswalker 25 Jan, 2008

    I haven't knit for years and picked it up because of this cute cap. I've made 3 since yesterday. They are so easy to make, comfortable and fit really well!! Does anyone out there think that a guy would wear this cap?

  • sonomahead 25 Jan, 2008

    see CraftyinOR's earlier post for reference to the scarf pattern.

  • patricedv 25 Jan, 2008

    Did I miss something? Quick Knit Hat and Scarf - where's the scarf pattern??

  • alnath 25 Jan, 2008

    where do i find the pattern for the scraf pictured with the knit hat? It appears to be chunky yarn knitted with a large needle.

  • sonomahead 24 Jan, 2008

    Just a note on the scarf, for stockinette you k a row, then p a row (knitting the row when the stitches look live a "v" and purling the rows when the stitches look like a hyphen), k1 p1 will produce a rib.

  • sonomahead 24 Jan, 2008

    Just a note on the scarf, for stockinette you k a row, then p a row (knitting the row when the stitches look live a "v" and purling the rows when the stitches look like a hyphen), k1 p1 will produce a rib.

  • lauraks555 16 Jan, 2008

    This is cute! It should be in the Knitting category!

  • kellimaier 11 Jan, 2008

    I have done almost no knitting this year because of classwork....but I could fit this in!

  • kickypants 6 Dec, 2007

    I've made soooo many of these hats in a variety of colours for my 6 yr old daughter and for myself. I LOVE them because they can be done in one day and take practically no skill whatsoever.

  • drmorrison 6 Dec, 2007

    Thank you, craftyinOR! I appreciate it so much! Nice to get a response...I thought it was a shot in dark. Now neat! I have been crocheting a ton, but haven't done a lot of knitting. My favorite new book (if you are interested) is One Skein...I am making several projects (knit and crochet) for gifts this year. You can find it at the following link. Thanks again! http://www.amazon.com/One-Skein-Quick-Projects-Crochet/dp/1931499748/ref...

  • craftyinOR 6 Dec, 2007

    The scarf is from MS Holiday Handmade Gifts special mag from 2006.....the scarf is awesome, I did a bunch last year for presents. Use a bulky cream colored wool and a fine light-blue mohair with size 20 needles, and cast on 14 stitches. It's a stockinette stich (knit 1, purl 1) and use all the yarn. It's very east, but it does roll up on the edges quite a bit.

  • craftyinOR 6 Dec, 2007

    The scarf is from MS Holiday Handmade Gifts special mag from 2006.....the scarf is awesome, I did a bunch last year for presents. Use a bulky cream colored wool and a fine light-blue mohair with size 20 needles, and cast on 14 stitches. It's a stockinette stich (knit 1, purl 1) and use all the yarn. It's very east, but it does roll up on the edges quite a bit.

  • drmorrison 4 Dec, 2007

    Does anyone know how to find the scarf pattern (shown with the hat)?

  • resalee 29 Nov, 2007

    I recently purchased 5 skeins of Red Heart Rag Doll wool on sale. I have enough to make 2 scarves and a hat, but could not find a pattern that I liked for the hat - this is the one. Thank you.