Need a Gift Now: Try a Beanie

I need to make a birthday present . . . stat. We've all been there—that birthday, baby shower, or holiday seems months away until it is next week. First I panic, then I reach for a hook and skein of yarn and start crocheting a circle. My favorite quick gift-project is a great hat. I do love a fast beanie.

Crochet Beanie  
Boyfriend Beanie, Interweave Crochet
Accessories 2010

The formula for a hat is simple enough that you can whip up a fabulous chapeau while watching a movie in the evening or visiting with friends. Create a circle by chaining several stitches; I usually begin with four to six. Slip-stitch in the first chain to form a ring. Then I work twelve double crochet in the ring, slip-stitching in the first dc to join.

Chain three to begin the next round (this chain counts as the first double crochet) and double crochet in the first double crochet, then work two double crochet in each double crochet around. The multiple double crochet stitches worked in a single stitch are increases. These increases create a flat circle to form the crown.

  Crochet Hats
  Goldilocks Family of Hats, Interweave
Accessories 2010

To increase the next round, chain three and double crocheting in the first double crochet as for the previous round. Then work one double crochet in the next double crochet followed by an increase (two double crochet) in the next double crochet. Continue in this pattern of a single double crochet followed by an increase around.

On each additional round, work one additional single crochet between the increases. For a baby hat, I increase until the circle measures about 4.5" in diameter before working in even rounds without increasing.

Shell Stitch Crochet Hat  
Breezy Hat, Interweave Crochet Summer

For more in-depth information on crocheting hats for all ages, including different methods to start the crown, check out Marty Miller's article "Circle in on the Perfect Hat" from Interweave Crochet Accessories 2010.

For a great quick beanie with a wonderful twist, try crocheting with a self-striping yarn for faux Fair Isle like that used for the Boyfriend Beanie (Interweave Crochet Accessories 2010) or work the hat in asymmetrical shells like those used in the Breezy Hat (Interweave Crochet Summer 2009).

Complete your Interweave Crochet collection and find more fabulous hat patterns during the Crochet Me back-issue sale. Hurry and take advantage of this great sale today.

Best wishes,

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