Pattern: French Braid

Hat1

A sweet baby knit that you could whip up in a weekend, this little hat is ideal for last-minute gifts.
The slip-stitch design is worked over just two rows, so it’s easy to memorise for knitting on the go.

Download the PDF at French Braid or follow the instructions below. Happy knitting!

MATERIALS
1 (2: 2) 50g/100m balls of Rooster Yarns Baby Rooster (shade 405)
3.25mm (US 3) knitting needles
Tapestry needle

TENSION
25 sts x 34 rows measures 10x10cm in stocking stitch

FINISHED MEASUREMENTS
30 (36: 42)cm circumference

ABBREVIATIONS
K Knit
P Purl
Psso Pass slipped stitch over knitted and increased sts
Rep Repeat
RS Right side
Sl Slip
St(s) Stitch(es)
WS Wrong side
Wyib With yarn at back
Yrn Yarn round needle

PATTERN

HAT (MAKE 2)
Cast on 42 (50: 58) sts using 3.25mm needles.
Row 1 *K2, P2; rep from * to last 2 sts, K2.
Row 2 *P2, K2; rep from * to last 2 sts, P2.
Rows 1 and 2 set K2, P2 rib.
Work in K2, P2 rib for 8 more rows, ending with a WS row.

Row 1 (RS) K1, *K1, sl1 purlwise wyib, K1, yrn, psso, K1; rep from * to last st, K1.
Row 2 (WS) Purl.
Rows 1 and 2 set slip-stitch pattern.
Work in slip-stitch pattern until hat measures 15 (17.5: 20)cm from cast-on edge, or desired length, ending on a row 2.

WORK TIES
Next row K2, sl1 purlwise wyib, K1, yrn, psso, K2, turn work.
Next row Purl to end.
Continue working these two rows over the first 6 sts of the row only until tie measures 4cm.
Cast off and break yarn.

Rejoin yarn to sts on needle.
Cast off 30 (38: 46) sts, K2, sl1 purlwise wyib, K1, yrn, psso, K2.
Next row Purl.
Next row K2, sl1 purlwise wyib, K1, yrn, psso, K2.
Next row Purl.
Continue working the last two rows until tie measures 4cm, ending with a purl row.
Cast off.

Make second hat piece the same.

MAKING UP
Join side seams using mattress stitch. A one-stitch seam edge has been provided for this.
Join cast-off top edges using mattress stitch, then knot ties together. Weave in ends and block gently.

Hat2

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Off the needles: Sawley hat

There’s one problem with going on holiday – leaving views like this behind when it’s time to come home:

France1

Just beautiful. I could happily spend all winter playing in the Alpine snow.

Before our trip, the first few weeks of January passed in a blur of back-to-work business, but I managed to squeeze in enough knitting time to make myself a new bobble hat. As soon as I set eyes on ‘Sawley’ in Rachel Coopey’s latest book, I knew I had to make one, and I had just the yarn for it in my stash.

Coop Knits

I have no idea how you pronounce its name (Snail-don? Snarl-dan?), but it’s wonderful. Grippy and warm, and perfect for colourwork.

Knitting Fair Isle to a deadline turned out to be a bad idea – so many tangles! so many mistakes! – and there’s some duplicate stitching to be done to fix the errors, but I’m calling it finished nevertheless:

Sawley hat

It’s lovely and warm, and a little bit big so it keeps the wind out of my ears too. What more could you ask for?

Hats off

At this time of year I always have an irresistible urge to knit accessories: hats, scarves, arm warmers, leg warmers… you name it. But this winter I think I need to take a break. Why? I just reorganised my wardrobe, and seeing all of them in one place came as a bit of a shock.

In my defence, my hat collection spans at least a decade and a half – and I do still wear them all. Most of them… Sometimes.

There’s the beanie bought for my first Reading festival; a stripy hat taken on a climbing trip with school; the oversized one I wore to play football at uni; a bargain baker boy from Accessorize; my favourite Fair Isle, a Christmas gift from my parents; a slouchy one bought to replace another, moth-eaten slouchy one; a stashbuster knitted on the Eurostar; a quick knit taken on holiday with friends; and the souvenir alpaca from Germany, made into a lacy Lucy in the Sky.

SarahLouKnits Lucy in the Sky

Sorry, Caput Helianthus and all the others in my Ravelry queue, you’re just going to have to wait.