Back in January I was at a baby shower with some friends. It was a classy affair with afternoon tea at a lovely tea shop / boutique. We arrived a bit early so had a little look round the boutique whilst we waited and saw a lovely hat that my friend fell in love with.
Very pretty and hand made, totally worth the £35 price tag (I like to see handmade stuff properly valued) but that put it WAY outside my friend's budget.
"I'll make you one." I said boldly, "No problem!"
With the photo above on my phone I shopped for suitable yarn.
The only yarn I could find in the right colour was regular double knitting. I also found a ball of a fluffy fur yarn called Touch by Sirdar that I thought I could mix.
I found this brilliant free pattern from Classy Crochet for a chunky rib hat.
The pattern is done on a circular needle and I don't have any this big, so I just used regular straight needles and did a little bit of experimenting and a few minor adjustments to make it work with what I had.
I used 2 strands of my peach Double Knitting and 1 strand of the fluffy stuff.
I wound a small ball of the peach from the main ball so I could use the 2 stands together without getting in a right mess.
I'm not going to re-write the pattern, but if you grab it from here I'll just explain the changes I made below:
- I used size 9mm and 10mm regular needles and started with 45 stitches instead of 42.
- I did the regular rib as per the pattern.
- For the main body of the hat I just did a mock fisherman's rib, due to my lack of circular needles. There's a great tutorial with photos for it here from Wool and the Gang.
- So for my row 6 I did the decreasing as per the pattern but not the p1 belows - I just did regular pearls. I ended up with 30 stitches instead of 28.
- Then in Row 7 I did just pearl all the way along
- Row 8 : p1, k1 below, p1, k1 below to the end.
- Row 9: all pearls again
- I repeated these 2 rows as my rib, ending on a pearl row.
- For the top shaping I followed the decreases on the pattern from Classy Crochet maintaining my slightly different rib.
The yarn is so fluffy it doesn't show any slightly odd things that happen to the rib anyway!
I sewed up the side seam and added a pom pom and gave it to my friend as an early birthday present.
She said she already had some flowers to add so I didn't try to recreate that bit. If I get chance I'll photograph it completely finished next time I see her wearing it.
As you can see my version is a little more white fluff than the original inspiration but it's close enough.
If you want to make one I suggest getting the pattern from Classy Crochet and just having a go. As with any pattern, if you don't use the same wool your results can vary, but this pattern is quick and easy enough to experiment with. I made this in an evening, and sewed it up/added the pom pom the next evening.
The only thing I'd add is that if you are a beginner, stick to a plain chunky yarn like the original pattern, this knitting with several strands and all that fluff took a bit of concentrating!
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