Biggie Braids is a simple cabled hat is a super thick yarn for a FAST and satisfying knit! It takes one skein of yarn, fat needles, and makes for a very satisfying little project. It also makes for an impressive looking holiday gift without a lot of labour.
The Weekend Hat by Hiromi Nagasawa is a great little project for fall and winter! It’s a pretty cabled toque that can be worn with the brim turned up like a fisherman cap or turned down to make it slouchy, or knit half a brim for a true beanie.
Portage is a classic-styled cabled toque, made with a classic wool, worked in the round from the bottom up. Simple and elegant, this never goes out of style – plus cables create density in the fabric which helps to keep you warm! It’s also kind of an easy project to choose when you don’t know what to knit, it makes a gorgeous gift or you can keep it for yourself.
Le Massif Scarf is worked in the round, featuring simple but striking geometric patterns. It is bold, stylish, and deliciously warm. This is a great exercise if you want to practice your stranded colourwork.
14″/35cm in circumference
Kelbourne Scout: 3 skeins in main colour, 1 skein in each of 2 contrast colours (shown in 26 Charcoal, 709 Sunflower and 105 Natural)
Compass is a gorgeous cabled cowl designed in the style of traditional aran sweaters (my heart skipped a beat when i found it). The cowl is written for two sizes, depending on how you like to wear your winter neckwear. If you prefer not to work the tubular cast on and bind off, a long tail cast on and binding off in pattern may be used in their place.
Custom Hats, by Kate Atherly, an awesome knitting instructor and designer, is an ebook that has something for every knitter. It’s not a standard pattern book, this is a complete recipe for making your own custom-fit hats, for any head, with any yarn. Just grab a skein and start knitting. With instructions for slouchy and beanie-style hats, and tutorials added for decorative flourishes like different cuff finishes and pom-poms and tassels, this book has everything you’ll ever need to keep everyone in your family warm.
The recipe includes all the instructions and numbers for three styles of hat with three choices of cuff, in 13 gauges and 17 sizes, covering preemies to XL adult heads. And if those don’t cover your needs, the formulas are included so you can calculate your own.
The book steps you through the whole process: from choosing yarn and determining size right through to finishing, with tutorials for all the key knitting techniques – casting on, working in the round, stretchy and decorative bind-offs, even weaving in the ends. There’s a whole chapter with ideas and instructions for customizing the hat with colour, changing up the hem pattern and style, and adding decorative flourishes like pom-poms and tassels.
Don’t worry, a yardage table will help you make sure you’ve got enough yarn: and there’s lots of tips and tricks for what to do if you think you’re going to run out, and how to use up small quantities of yarn leftovers. There’s even information on making hats for the most delicate of heads: premature babies, cancer patients and others losing their hair because of medical treatments. Photo tutorials and guidance on fit and yarn help you make your first hat perfect. For experienced hat knitters, the advice on customization and straightforward but powerful formulas empower you to get designing.
Kelbourne Scout is a classic yarn for the sake of yarn. It’s an unfussy, strong, versatile, heathered wool. Scout is a Dk weight, woolen-spun yarn, so it’s light, airy and springy – perfect for fair isle, cables, or any other technique that requires a bit of definition. Made with 100% Peruvian wool, it’s comfortable to work with and wear (it passes my yarn-o-meter, meaning it’s not as buttery soft as a merino wool, but it isn’t remotely in the itchy or uncomfortable range of fibres).
If you love the projects we’re sharing today but you aren’t a fan of traditional style woolen-spun yarns like Kelbourne Scout (it isn’t itchy, but it also isn’t baby-bum soft), you can substitute the following yarns:
2. If you like knitting with a more traditional yarn, but you find it too itchy for a hat, try lining your hats with a headband sized strip of fleece fabric – it’s also beneficial as it makes the hat warmer!
ALL Cascade 220 Superwash Sport is 35% Off! This yarn is on clearance and we won’t be ordering any more, so this is a “While Quantities Last” opportunity.
Cascade 220 Superwash Sport is a super soft, 100% merino superwash yarn. It’s great for kids and babies (I frequently use it for my niece and nephew), and the 50g skeins make it a nice choice for colourwork. 1 skein is usually enough for a baby hat, 2 for an adult hat or mitts/gloves, 4 for a scarf or infinity cowl, 8 for a baby blanket (approx 30″ x 30″). It’s also perfect for blankets and afghans that require a lot of colours, like those by Attic 24.
I know everybody’s always looking for a yarn that “does stuff”, but sometimes there’s something to a clean, simple cable in a soft, smooth merino. It never goes out of style, it looks good with everything, anybody can wear it – ’nuff said, start your holiday knitting! Plus, the pattern is FREE.
I made this Braided Cable Hat with super soft, super pretty Diamond Luxury Baby Alpaca Sport, and I have NO REGRETS! The baby alpaca looks sensational, it’s super soft, super fluffy and airy, and of course, it’s warm. The cables are simple, great for any skill level, and the pattern is a freebie, so that’s always a bonus too.
I topped it with a Raccoon Fur Pompom (size 16cm) – they’re my favourite because they are so light and fluffy, and don’t weigh down the hat too much. If you aren’t a fan of fur you can go with a faux-fur pom-pom, or go classic and make your own pom-pom – I swear by the Clover Pom-Pom Makers, they make BEAUTIFUL pom-poms! Whatever you choose, we sell them all and you can get everything in one place.
Overall, I’m super pleased with this project – it looks like a $200 hat, which isn’t bad for $20 worth of yarn. But beware, once you make one everyone you know will start putting in requests for one of their own!
Our Bulky Mobius Cowl is a great little last minute gift. It works up fast on 10mm/US15 needles and the mobius technique makes it entertaining. The yarn, Malabrigo Rasta, is stunning: it’s buttery soft and I’ve never seen a skein that didn’t knit up like a Monet painting. Plus, it’s a one-skein project!
I thought this cowl would make a great one-skein gift idea, so I gave it a try and I think it worked out really beautifully! I used one of my favourite bulky weight yarns, Diamond Luxury Baby Alpaca Sport, and the end result is SUPER soft and cozy! I had to make some modifications to make this project come out to it’s fullest potential, so please read the notes below before starting (and maybe print them off and keep them with your pattern instructions).
HACKS & Modifications
I made some changes to the pattern because let’s face it, you often get what you pay for with a free pattern.
For the ribbing, I went down to a 5mm/US8 needle for the ribbing. 2×2 rib is normally a looser tension than other stitches, and you need to go down a needle size to mitigate this and prevent the ribbing from fanning out later.
For the cable section, I went up to a 6.5mm/US10.5 needle, because the yarn is very fluffy and airy. If you are using a denser yarn with more definition (see suggestions below) you can stick with the prescribed 6mm/US10 needles
Because my yarn is big and fluffy, and has a lot of aura (haze), the cable from the original pattern was not showing up or working well, and I had to switch it out for another type of cable that would show better. I went with a simple braided cable that I was already familiar with, Chart A from Lopi Braided Hat & Mitts. It is the same number of stitches as the original cable, so I just did the new cable instead of the old. If you use a yarn with more definition (see options below), you can do either cable.
I worked 6 rounds of ribbing at the top and the bottom (to conserve yarn).
I worked 4 pattern repeats from Chart A of the Lopi Braided Hat & Mitts, and changed to the ribbing after finishing row 6 of the chart.
I don’t usually bother using a cable needle. Making cables without a cable hook is not a skill for the novice, but if you are feeling intrepid and are comfortable with retrieving dropped stitches and are good at ‘reading’ your stitches (recognizing where and what they are), you should definitely it give it a try, it can save you a lot of time and effort: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-6DB6WhAKvY
If you need to conserve yarn or change the size of the pattern, you can omit the first 4 sts of the pattern (the single rib at the start doesn’t really do much for the design). In *my project* (yours may be different), based on the total number of rounds, each stitch represents about 40 sts in the scheme of the entire pattern. Omitting 4 sts from the cast-on will give you about two extra rounds. Each cable represents 8 stitches, so you can increase or decrease the pattern in a multiple of 8 sts. If you want to modify this for a child you’ll definitely want to omit stitches, it fits an adult comfortably.
Because all of the yarns we’ve suggested (above) bloom beautifully, you can try pushing your needle size up to a 12mm/US17 and omit a ball of yarn.
The yarn suggested in the pattern is super-bulky, so expect your cowl to be too. If this is too much for you, consider substituting a slightly thinner, bulky weight yarn, and smaller (8mm/US11) needles. If this seems too narrow, add a second cable pattern repeat.
The pattern is knit flat and seamed in a circle, but if you want to do something more knitterly like a 3 needle bind-off or kitchener stitch, you can cast on using a provisional cast-on (casting on with scrap yarn).
This scarf is quite long and voluminous – it calls for a lot of yarn, but you don’t have to make it quite as big as they did. You can scale it back by omitting a pattern repeat (make it 2 cables wide instead of 3 by omitting 14 stitches from the pattern), and don’t make it quite so long.
Oy vey, how pretty is this cabled hat?! I think it would look amazing in a simple yarn like Cascade 220 Superwash (the heathered colours would be especially fetching), but any worsted weight solid, semi-solid, heathered or tweed yarn would look amazing! Be sure to wash your hat and lay it flat to dry to settle the cables.