Friday, January 1, 2010

Wanted: Warm hat for bald head

Alpaca Ear Flap Hat

Happy New Year! My husband has the perfect head for knitted hats. It's round and shiny and quite susceptible to the cold. He started shaving his head several years ago when nature decided hair didn't belong there anymore. So, over the course of my few years of knitting, I've tackled several beanies for him - always from patterns that were good, but didn't quite fit as well as he wanted. This hat pattern was a lot of fun to create and I got his input every step of the way. And if you haven't yet noticed, it's made from my favorite yarn - 100% baby alpaca. Guaranteed warmth and comfort.

Skill Level: Advanced Knitter

Techniques involved: knit, purl, increase, K2tog, backwards loop cast-on ( there are several video sites showing this technique - Very simple)

Yarn: Plymouth Yarn - Baby Alpaca Grande - US 10.5 needle = 3.5 sts per inch

Amount needed for project : approx. 140 yds

Needles and notions: Size 10.5 , 16" circulars and 10.5 dpn, stitch markers, stich holder, tapestry needle

Fit's large man's head - 23" circumference +/- 1-2 inches

**note ** - 10.5 straight needles can be used during creation of the ear flaps.

**note** - when increasing stitches on ear flaps, do not increase the first or last stitch unless stated. This allows for a neater, more uniform edge. Increase by knitting in front and back of same stitch.

**note** - knitting in the round creates stockinette stitch.

Begin with earflaps:

Earflap #1
CO 6 sts

row 1 - knit
row 2 - purl
row 3 - knit, increasing 2 sts on row ( ex. K1, K in front and back of next stitch, K2, K in frontand back of next stitch, K1) = 8 stitches are now on needle.
row 4 - purl
row 5 - knit, increasing 2 sts on row
row 6 - purl
row 7 - knit, increasing 2 sts on row
row 8 - purl
row 9 - knit
row 10 -purl, increasing 2 sts on row
row 11 -knit
row 12 -purl
row 13 -knit, increasing 2 sts on row
row 14 -purl
row 15 -knit, increasing 2 sts on row
row 16 -purl
row 17 -knit, increasing 2 sts on row - 20 stitches now on needle
row 18 -purl
row 19 -knit, increasing 2 sts on row
row 20 -purl
row 21 -knit
row 22 -purl, increasing 2 sts on row
row 23 -knit
row 24 -purl
row 25 -knit, increasing 2 sts on row
row 26 -purl
row 27 -knit, increasing 2 sts on row - 28 stitches now on needle
row 28 -purl, increasing the first and last stitch in the row ( explanation: knit in front and back of first stitch, K26, knit in front and back of last stitch)

place stitches on holder.

Earflap #2

CO 6 sts
Repeat above - rows 1 - 28.
row 29 - knit, increasing the first and last stitch in the row.

If you knitted earflap #2 on straight needles, transfer to your circulars at this time.

Backwards loop cast-on 8 stitches.

Transfer earflap #1 to your circular needles. Your cast on stitches should be in the middle of the 2 earflaps. Join the earflap to the cast on stitches, knitting row 29 from above.

Backwards loop cast-on 8 stitches. Place marker to indicate beginning. Join the other earflap to these stitches by knitting. You now have a complete circle, joined. 80 sts on needle. Continue knitting in the round until hat height is approximately 4 1/2 inches long from your cast on stitches. Place 6 markers evenly around hat ( * note - of course 6 doesn't divide evenly into 80, so I placed markers at the following #s - beginning, after st#13, after st#26, after st#39, after st#52, after st#66.

Begin decreasing as follows:
all rows are knit, on rows where you k2tog, do so before each marker.

Row 1:K2tog before each marker. (decreased 6 sts)
row 2: knit
row 3: knit
row 4: K2tog before each marker. (decreased 6 sts)
row 5: K2tog before each marker. (decreased 6 sts)
row 6: knit
row 7: K2tog before each marker. (decreased 6 sts)
row 8: knit
row 9: K2tog before each marker. (decreased 6 sts) = 50 sts remain.
row 10: knit
row 11: K2tog before each marker.
row 12: K2tog before each marker.
row 13: K2tog before each marker.
row 14: K2tog before each marker.
row 15: knit
row 16: K2tog before each marker. = 20 sts remain.
row 17: knit
row 18: K2tog before each marker.
row 19: K2tog before each marker. = 8 sts remain.

remove markers - cut yarn , leaving tail and thread through remaining stitches, pulling tightly to close hole. Weave in ends.

Cut 6 lengths of yarn , approximately 24 inches each. Thread 3 pieces of yarn through each earflap tip, braiding them together to desired length and securing end with a simple knot. Cut even, leaving approx. 1 inch of yarn.



looks great, haven't made it the way the pattern reads...kudos at first glance

Liz Hahn said...

I wanted to try making this hat at our knitting class at the library. May we use your pattern?

Jackie said...

Liz - yes, I would love to see pictures of your finished hat. Remember, this fits a large man's head. My husband's head is 23 1/4 inch circumference and it fits him loosely. He likes it that way.

Anonymous said...

thanks for the pattern I'm sure my son will want one of these .

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Anonymous said...

I love the pattern, but how would i convert the measurments for a womans head

Sarawolf said...

My hubby also has a bald head, thak you for posting this paatern, he likes these hats cause it keep the wind out of his ears to.

alice said...

Thankyou so much for this pattern. I have severe panic attacks that make me very hot and have really wanted a hat that I can knit that has ear flats for riding my bicycle. Normally hats of this sort are lined with fleece and are just too hot for me. I am really looking forward to the actual knitting of this hat and seeing the end result.
Thanks again.

NurseyKnitter said...

Thank you to everyone for the nice comments. As far as converting this to a smaller size, I have not tried to do it - but I would simply decrease the width of the ear flaps (probably by at least 4sts on each side) and then decrease the amount of backward loop cast on sts by 2-3. This should create a smaller circumference. I would be very interested in hearing how it goes if someone tries this.

Amanda Hunter said...

I decreased the size of the hat by casting on 4 stitches, making the row 24 purl into the final row of purl and increase and using size 10 needles. It fits a 21" inch head perfectly. It was my first ear-flap hat and it was so easy thanks to your perfect directions! Thank you!!