Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Free pattern: Top-down toddler beret!

Top-down toddler beret

This beret is worked top-down using a magic loop technique (dpns and I do not get along). These are the instructions for the one I knit; because it is knit top-down, you could adjust it for any size you like by just increasing until you get the diameter you want, working your plain rounds and then decreasing until the opening fits the head in question. Do note though, that the i-cord edging tightens up the edge considerably, when compared to live stitches sitting on a circular needle.

Size: head opening has a circumference of 42cm; fits my almost 2-year old with some room to grow.

Yarn: Debbie Bliss Wool Cotton, 2 balls main colour, small amount contrast colour (you won’t use much of the second ball of the main colour).

Needles: 3.75mm circular – 24” (to use magic loop), 2x 3.25mm dpns for i-cord “stalk”

Tension: 23 st/10cm

With MC, CO 4 stitches onto one dpn.

*Slide these 4 stitches to the other end of the dpn. With the other dpn, K across all 4 stitches. Repeat from * 6 times.

Using the circular needle, kfb into each of the first 2 stitches. Pull the needle through the stitches just worked, so that they rest on the cable. Now kfb into the remaining 2 stitches. You have 8 stitches in total, 4 resting on the cable, and 4 that you have just worked on the needle.

K one round plain thus: pull the stitches that are on the cable onto the other end of the circular needle. 4 stitches are on each point. Now pull the other 4 stitches onto the cable. K the 4 stitches off the point, pull the needle through as before, K the remaining 4 stitches. All subsequent rows are worked in this way.

Next round: kfb in each stitch. 16 sts.

K 1 round plain.

Next round: kfb, K1, repeat to end. 24 sts.

K 1 round plain.

Next round: kfb, K2, repeat to end. 32 sts.

Keep increasing in this manner until you have worked the round that goes kfb, K18, repeat to end (160 sts).

K 10 rounds plain (you can knit fewer plain rounds if you would like a less slouchy beret – about 4 would work).

Now, in order to work the decreases, you’ll need to move a couple of stitches.

At the beginning of the round, K1 and slip this stitch past the loop so it is with the other group of stitches on the cable. K18, *K2tog, K18, repeat from * until the end of this group of stitches, where you are left with one stitch. You need 2 stitches to work a K2tog, so nab the first stitch of the next group, slip it along the loop and onto the working end of the needle. Now K it together with the previously lonely stitch.

For the second group of stitches, K18, K2tog, repeat to end.

K one round plain.

Next row: K17, K2tog, repeat to end.

K one round plain.

Next row: K16, K2tog, repeat to end.

Keep decreasing in this way until you have knit 12 sts between K2togs.

K one round plain and cut yarn.

Now add the i-cord edging (if you do not like i-cord, you could just K about 4-6 rows of garter stitch instead).

With CC, CO 4 sts onto a dpn and work about 4cm of i-cord as before on the dpns, depending on how long you want the ends of your tie. Then slip the 4 sts onto the left-hand point of the circular needle. Still using CC (and now using the other end of the circ to knit – no more dpns!), *K3 on your i-cord as usual, then K the last st of the i-cord tog with the first st of the hat. Slip the 4 sts back onto the left needle, and repeat from * until all the hat sts have been eaten up by the i-cord. Switch back to dpns and K another 4cm of i-cord for the other end of the tie. Cut yarn, and using a sewing needle thread the end through the 4 sts of the i-cord and pull tight. Secure the end, but do not break yarn. Now tie a single knot in the tie, and use the CC yarn end to secure the knot invisibly. Weave in all ends, block over a plate or saucepan lid, *put hat on toddler, toddler removes hat and throws it on floor, repeat from *.


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