Sunday, December 9, 2007

Easy Seamless Crochet Preemie Hat



Several (make that a long time ago) years ago, I was given some patterns for knit and crochet preemie items. A "Guardian Angel" type organization. After making dozens of the little sets, I started to adapt the pattern to make the items seamless (I hate seaming). So the first of my adapted patterns is the crochet hat.


The original size is for 3-5lb babies but this hat is easily changed for different size heads and yarns. And it is so simple it will be easily memorized.


Easy Seamless Crochet Preemie Hat
For 3 - 5 lbs

Materials - baby yarn or fingering yarn
3.5omm crochet hook (US E/4)
needle for weaving in ends

NOTE - Crochet in back loops only, all rows and rounds. Crochet loosely, you want a soft texture, light and airy. My notes are in red.


Cuff:
Chain 17.

(this can be wider by adding more stitches, or narrower by less stitches.)

Row 1 - 1 sc in 2nd chain from hook, sc to end, turn.
Row 2 - ch 1, sc to end.

(Remember to sc in back loops only.)

Continue till piece measures 8 1/2 inches.

(I usually do about 40 rows or any even number)

Fold cuff over so that starting row is lined up with last row, and the starting thread is on my left and my hook and working thread is on the right. This saves weaving in ends in a minute. Pick up 1 loop from each start and end rows and slip stitch up the seam.

(I'm sorry I have brain fade right now due to an income tax course I am taking and I can't verbalize what I'm seeing in my mind....you are going to close the cuff into a circle and just pick up 1 thread from the front and 1 from the back....email me or I'll try to redo this part later.)

When you get to the end of the seam, chain 1 and turn work.

(on the next row, which is the pick up row, crochet over that starting thread...see, no ends to weave in!)

Sc 40 stitches evenly around cuff. Join with slip st. Do not turn, you are working in the round.
Row 2 - ch 2, dc to end, join with sl st.
Row 3 - ch 1, sc to end, join with sl st.
Row 4 - ch 2, dc to end, join with sl st.
Row 5 - ch 1, sc to end, join with sl st.
Row 6 - ch 2, dc to end, join with sl st.
Row 7 - ch 1, (sc 3, sc 2tog) repeat to end, join with sl st.
Row 8 - ch 2, (dc1, dc 2tog) repeat to end, join with sl st.
Row 9 - ch 1, (sc 1, sc 2 tog) repeat to end, join with sl st.

There should be about 10 stitches left now, break yarn, thread through the back loop of those 10 stitches and pull tightly to close. Fasten off. This is normally the only thread I have to weave in if my cuff threads work out properly.

After you have made one, you will be able to see how to adjust this for a variety of sizes and yarns.
First match yarn to hook, a loose light fabric is wanted.
The original makes a hat for about a 10" head size. I make hats in 6, 8, 10, and 12 inch cuffs. There are some very small preemies and a full term would be the 12" size.
When you pick up the first row for the crown of the hat, I just match the number of stitches to the cuff eg. 40 stitches to 40 rows. This is not critical. If I wind up with an odd number of stitches I just add an extra stitch at the end of the row. Especially the decrease rows, sometimes I lose or gain a stitch. But nothing is set in stone. By the time it is finished, you will not be able to see that extra stitch. I hope this is clear enough to understand. I never realized how hard it is to write a pattern out.

Booties to match soon. These are seamless, too. Maybe next week after my final exams.