Monday, February 1, 2010

Knit One Below (K1B) Baby Hat

Variegated yarns are beautiful, but they are not always easy to incorporate into projects. You never know until you start knitting how the colors will pool. If the yarn is self striping each colored section is long enough for you to knit multiple rounds in a single color. Otherwise, you don't know if you'll get a spiral, or big patches of color that appear unordered.

The book Knit One Below: One Stitch, Many Fabricsby Elise Duvekot discussed a wonderful technique to mix up the colors a bit, Knit One Below (K1B). The patterns in the book are fantastic, and I highly recommend it. Using this technique, you can effectively create vertical stripes.

  • Peaches & Creame, Salmon Royale (Color 169). This 100% cotton yarn is 4 Ply worsted weight. This pattern consumed almost the entire 2 ounce ball.
  • Size 3 (3.25 mm) double pointed needles. (the K1B stitch ends up being fairly loose, so you want to use smaller needles to have a tighter fabric.
  • Yarn needle or crochet hook for finishing
  • Gauge: 4 sts/inch over K1B fabric, 6 rows/inch (visible rows of K1B fabric, actual 24 rows knit)
  • Finished Size: 14" Circumference, 6.5" high. (Baby 3-6 Months). The fabric is very stretchy, so it is great for a growing head!

The colorway.
The Pattern:

CO 60 sts. Join and knit 1 round.
Round 1: *K1, K1B* repeat across
Round 2: *K1b, K1* repeat across
Repeat rows 1 and 2 until the project measures 6 inches, ending on a round 1. This should be about 65 rounds.

Crown Decreases:
Row 1: *K1b, K1, K1B, K1, K1B, K1, K1B, K3tog*, repeat across (48 sts)
Row 2: *K1, K1B* repeat across (Note: you are K1B'ing into the k3tog stitch. If you are having trouble a crochet hook could help.)
Row 3: *K1B, K1* repeat across
Row 4: *K1, K1B* repeat across
Row 5: *K1B, K1, K1B, K1, K1B, K3tog*, repeat across (36 sts)
Rows 6-8: Repeat rows 2-4
Row 9: *K1B, K1, K1B, K3tog*, repeat across (24 sts)
Rows 10-12: Repeat rows 2-4
Row 13: *K1B, K3tog*, repeat across (12 sts)
Row 14: K2tog across (6 sts)
Cut wool, draw though remaining stitches and weave in loose ends.

K1B fabric is stretchy, like a ribbed pattern. This photo shows the stretched fabric.

Notes: At first I cast on 70 sts, but the circumference as 16 inches. This fabric is very stretchy, so I wanted to have the size be smaller so it could fit a younger baby. Therefore I switched to 60 sts, which I predicted should have a circumference of ~13.5 inches. There is a lot of give to the hat, so you could decrease the number of stitches even more if you want it to have a tighter fit.

Suggested Pattern Variations:
  • Add a brim to the hat: I started running out of yarn (see below), but if you had plenty of yarn, you could increase the number of rows of the main pattern.
  • Mix different variegated colorways (or solids) to make the vertical stripes more distinctive. (There are many different single color saturation colorways available in cotton.) Alternate colors in each round (Use color A for round 1, color B for round 2) to create the vertical stripes.
  • Use up your remnant yarns in many colors to create a pattern. (See ChemKnits' Knit One Below Beer Cozy for an example of the patterns you can create.)

The hat and the remaining yarn (left) and what the hat would look like with a brim (right).

The right side (top) and wrong side (bottom) of this K1B pattern. This is how a brimmed hat would appear.

Abbreviations used in this pattern
K1B (or K1b) - knit one below
K2tog - Knit 2 stitches together
K- Knit
P - purl

This this pattern was created by ChemKnits for your personal or charity use. This pattern is not to be replicated, sold or redistributed without permission from ChemKnits. © 2010 ChemKnits