Can I make a hat?

knit_knot_eat's picture

After about 2 weeks of doing this, I am clearly obsessed. I am just about done with my first real scarf, and my wife says I need a matching hat now. Am I crazy for even thinking about this? I can knit and purl (and switch between them). I can do increases and decrease (thanks for the help on this), and I have circular needles and did a magic loop (which is sooo cool and easy, I loved it).
So is doing a hat too big of a stretch for me now? Can it be done simply with the magic loop and decreases?

I don't think they called them needles on accident. Only difference between this and drugs is I don't have track marks on my arms!

knit_knot_eat's picture

So how do I do a Turkish

So how do I do a Turkish cast on with 1 circular needle? I can't fid any instructions on the net.

MasonM's picture

I know the instructions for

I know the instructions for the Turkish cast on call for using two circular needles, but I do it with just one using the magic loop technique. It works just fine.

Mason

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knit_knot_eat's picture

Does anyone know how to

Does anyone know how to start at the top and work down? Someone was telling me that this is their preferred method of making hats but I can't find any instructions on it. I might like this better too since I am more comfortable doing increases than decreases.

MasonM's picture

You just start with a closed

You just start with a closed type cast on such as a figure 8 or Turkish cast on (I prefer the Turkish) and then work your increases at the proper rate for the shape you want and until you reach the desired diameter for the hat. More increases, such as 8 every row, will make a flatter top where fewer, say 6 every other row, will make it more rounded, and even fewer will make it more cone shaped.

Mason

Linux: because a PC is a terrible thing to waste

crmartin's picture

Here is a link to an easy

Here is a link to an easy pattern Carrot Cake Hat: that was posted by Steven. I have made a couple of these for chemo patients.

Randy

knit_knot_eat's picture

Great, so I can use the one

Great, so I can use the one set of circulars and just use the magic loop method. I am going to give it a try once I finish my scarf.

MasonM's picture

Knitting a hat in the round

Knitting a hat in the round is pretty simple. Go for it, I've made dozens of them and there's really nothing to it.

You don't need to use DPNs for the smaller diameter part if you don't want to. You can use either the Magic Loop technique or use the two circulars method, whichever you prefer. I'd much rather do that than fiddle around with DPNs.

Mason

Linux: because a PC is a terrible thing to waste

knit_knot_eat's picture

Why do I need to move to

Why do I need to move to DPNs after a certain point? Can't I just stay on the one set of circular needles?

YugiDean's picture

The DPNs allow you to do

The DPNs allow you to do smaller diameter knitting. You could use the magic loop method to continue using just a circular needle. I don't really prefer that method because it makes my head hurt remembering to slide the stitches around and all that mess, but if you want to do it that way, you can. Plus, if you use the magic loop method, my experience has been that you'd be better off using a longer length cable needle the more stitches you have. I'm doing a double-knit hat right now that started off with 120 stitches, and I just don't think 60 stitches would work well with my short 16" circular in the magic loop method.

But in the end, it's all a matter of personal preference. DPNs look far more intimidating than they actually are, and as long as you're not using 12" DPNs or something, I don't think they're that clunky, either. The point is that as you decrease, you can't continue knitting in the round like you do in the beginning because circular needles can only go so narrow without forcing you into DPNs or magic loop. :-)

"Men can starve from a lack of self-realization as much as they can from a lack of bread." --Richard Wright

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YugiDean's picture

You can knit a hat either in

You can knit a hat either in the round or flat. Both have their pros and cons. If you knit it flat, I think it's easier because you don't have to fiddle with double pointed needles. The downside is that you obviously end up needing to seam it, and I'm not that great at that (which doesn't mean you wouldn't be).

Knitting in the round makes for a cleaner finish (no seam) and is actually more fun in my opinion because you don't ever have to knit a "wrong side" row OR turn your work. Just make sure to mark the end of the row with a stitch marker. The only "con" to knitting in the round is that you have to use double pointed needles when you get to the top of the hat. I have heard of people knitting top down on hats, but I haven't ever tried it. In any case, the double-pointed needles LOOK far more difficult than they end up being. But one good tip for DPNs is that I would either get DPNs that are made out of wood (as opposed to metal or plastic) and/or get lots of those rubber things you put on the ends of your needles to keep stuff from sliding off. There's nothing that causes panic more than losing the stitches off one of your DPNs! Honestly, though, that's never happened to me, even when I first started. Unless you use super-slippery needles and have a very loose tension, you should be okay as long as you're careful.

If you're just starting out with a hat, I would just do something super simple with a k2p2 rib pattern. Cast on a multiple of four stitches on circular needles. I think 88 (give or take) would be appropriate for a worsted weight yarn. I'm usually hovering around the 100 mark, but my hats are not that tight on me. All rows (until you decrease) should be repeats of *k2, p2* Continue in this manner until the hat is the depth you prefer (just put it on and try it, but be careful not to let your yarn slide off your circular needles).

Once your hat seems to be approaching the depth you want, you can decrease by repeating *k2tog, p2tog* around for ONE row. This essentially knocks all your ribs down from two stitches in width to one. You'll probably need to move your stitches onto DPNs at this point. You'll want to use four DPNs and use a fifth one as your working needle. I've never seen a DPN set that did not come with at least five needles. Repeat about six rows of the *k1, p1* rib, then start decreasing again. You can knit the first stitch, then k2tog all the way around. You'll have one stitch left. Knit it together with the first stitch. Do this one more time and you can stop there with 11 stitches left (if my math is correct) and then cut your yarn with plenty of length to thread through all the remaining stitches with a tapestry needle, pull it shut and tie off. I usually thread the yarn through the top so I can flip the hat inside-out and weave the long strand in on the inside of the hat. You could also just tie it off really well. However you prefer. No one's going to see the inside of the hat unless you make it a point to show them, so you can be sloppy if it makes you feel more comfortable! LOL

Once you get a feel for knitting in the round and using DPNs, you can try stepping up the complexity of your pattern.

"Men can starve from a lack of self-realization as much as they can from a lack of bread." --Richard Wright

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MMario's picture

well - not until you start

well - not until you start selling your blood to buy yarn

yup - you have all the "tools" needed to do a hat in the round. I haven't done many so I will let others make suggestions as to patterns, technique, etc; but there's no reason you cannot do a hat to match your scarf. It's a nice logical progression.

MMario - I'm not divorced from reality - we're having a trial separation
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