How to Knit a Beanie

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To knit a beanie, use a 16-inch needle to begin the bottom of the hat, measure the person's head to determine how many stitches to cast on, determine which decorative stitches will be sued and decrease the stitches incrementally to taper up to the top. Learn the basic steps of knitting a beanie with a demonstration from an advanced knitter in this free video on knitting.

Part of the Video Series: Knitting Tips
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Video Transcript

Hi, I'm Allison from ImagiKnit in San Francisco and I'd like to show you how to make a beanie with knitting. The most important thing is to make sure you have a sixteen inch needle and the size will be determined by the type of yarn you use, but the length definitely needs to be about sixteen inches from point to point. This length of a needle will work for a six month old up to an adult. If the beanie is for a baby that's a premi or younger than six months, you will need a shorter needle and those are harder to come by. Once you have your pattern for your beanie and all of your materials, you'll go ahead and get started with a cast on. Most beanies are done from the bottom or this portion here and then knitted upwards. Very few are done from the top down. Cast on all of your stitches on your sixteen inch needle and then place a ring marker on your right hand needle. Before casting on, make sure that you know the size of the hat that you'd like to make. What you should do is make a gauge swatch so you know how many stitches per inch that you'll get with your knitted fabric using the the yarn and the needles that you've chosen. Also, you should measure the head of the recipient. For example, if the recipient's head twenty two inches and you are getting three stitches per inch on your gauge swatch, you should subtract two inches from the head size. So that's twenty two minus two is twenty and then twenty times three, your stitches per inch, equals sixty. So you'll cast on sixty stitches. Once you're finished casting on, making sure to leave your tail long enough to weave in later, you'll go ahead and place your ring marker on your right hand needle before connecting the stitches. Make sure that the part that looks like a braid from your cast on is all along the middle and doesn't come up and over the needle like this. This would cause you to make a figure eight, also called a mobius. and that's the worst thing that you could do 'cause that could never be a hat. So make sure that you don't have any twists and the little part that looks like a braid is along the inside. Now we're ready to connect, so we will just connect between the first and the last stitches that were cast on. So with our working yarn here attached to the ball, we'll go ahead and just knit into the first stitch cast on. For your first round, you can use a combination of knits and pearls if you like to make ribbing or seed stitch. And that will make a border like this on your hat. If you just use the knit stitch all along for the whole hat, you'll end up with a border like this that rolls automatically. You don't need to do anything special. It'll just happen by using the knit stitch. Once you have knitted four and a half to five and a half inches, depending on the size of the person you're making the hat for, approximately for and a half if it's a baby or a child, and about five and a half for a larger adult. Then you will start to decrease. Make sure that your finish your round, which will be where you've placed your marker. Then you'll go ahead and start your decreases. Decreases are determined by the number of stitches that you've cast on. For example, if you've cast on eighty stitches, that would be ten groups of eight stitches, so for your decreases within each group of eight stitches, you'll do knit six and then knit two together equaling eight stitches. So each eight stitches will decrease to seven stitches so that you have only seventy stitches after one decreased round. So here I have a hat that I have completed five and a half inches and we're at our ring marker, which is the end of the round. We're going to make our first decrease round. So I'm going to go ahead and knit six. And then, decrease by knitting two together. So we now have seven stitches instead of eight in that first group. No I'm going to continue that. Once you've completed your first decrease round which was the knit six, knit two together, for eighty stitches cast on, the next decrease round will be knit five, knit two together. You'll repeat that all the way around until you come to your marker again. The the following row will be knit four, knit two together and so on. The last decrease round will be knit two together all the way around. Once you've completed that, you will break your yarn leaving approximately three to four inches and use your darning needle to pull the tail of yarn through all of the remaining stitches and cinch.

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