Friday, October 7, 2016

Freebie Friday - Built For Speed Beanie

This week we learned all about double crochet and Magic Loop... and today we're going to put those techniques to good use in the Built For Speed Beanie!

I call it "built for speed" because this is going to be the fastest hat you'll ever make.  It may even become your "go-to" like me.

The pattern is available as a free download on Ravelry, or you can download a .pdf here.

Instead of starting with the pattern, I'm going to start with the Appendix!  Let's do the math...

This technique is called a "Basic Bucket" because once you know it you'll be able to make anything round, AND be able to troubleshoot why it is or isn't the shape you intended.

You'll also be able to make a hat that fits - every time!


The term “basic bucket” refers to a specific progression of increases that create a flat circle… it’s all in the geometry.

You may hear this referred to as The Rule of 12. I find that sometimes I need to make it 8, or 10, so we’re going to have a more flexible interpretation. Your stitch count in row 1 is your “base”. Round 2 is your base x 2. Round 3 is your base x 3.

The Built for Speed Beanie uses 12 so:

Round 1: 12 stitches (base 10 would be 10)
Round 2: 24 stitches (base 10 would be 20)
Round 3: 36 stitches (base 10 would be 30)
And so on.

In other words, for every stitch in Round 1, there are 2 stitches in Round 2, 3 stitches in Round 3 and so on:

Round 1: no increases
Round 2: 2dc (inc) in every stitch
(repeat of 2 stitches in Round 2)
Round 3: dc in next dc, 2dc (inc) in next dc
(repeat of 3 stitches in Round 3)
Round 4 has a repeat of 4 stitches, round 5 a repeat of 5, etc.

You could continue this progression as many rounds as you like, and you’ll still end up with a flat circle! But if your circle of increase rounds doesn’t lie flat:

Cupping: edges are tight, pulling circle into a cup shape – if it’s just a little bit, it will be ok as the hat will eventually be cup shaped. If it’s a lot: Try using a larger hook or try increasing your base, i.e. 8-10-12-whatever is needed to make it flat.

Rippling: edges are loose, making a ruffle – if it’s just a little bit, it will be ok as the shape of the hat will camouflage it. If it’s a lot: Try using a smaller hook or try decreasing your base. 

 Here's quick example:


If we do the math, you can use this same “basic bucket” formula to make a hat from any gauge yarn for anyone of any size. A great rule of thumb is that the diameter of the circle (straight across the widest part) at the end of your increase rounds should be a little less than 1/3 of the final circumference you need. In terms of geometry, the circumference is equal to the diameter multiplied by pi (3.14).  

So for these approximate circumference sizes, the flat circle should have a diameter of about:
Regardless of how many increase rounds the pattern says, if you stop increasing at these measurements and start working “even” the hat ought to fit ok. This is how you can substitute yarns with an appropriately sized hook and still make it to size.

If your circle is smaller than you need, add one more round of increases and remeasure. If your circle is larger than you need, rip out one round of increases and remeasure.

If you have to decide between slightly larger and slightly smaller, go with slightly larger. The post stitch ribbing will bring it in enough to be worn comfortably. If it’s still slightly large after post stitch ribbing, rework the ribbing with one size smaller hook.

If you've come this far, you won't need me to go step by step with the actual beanie pattern.  The step by step photos make it particularly suited for beginners, and everything about basic buckets and sizing is included in the Appendix of the pattern for handy reference. 

The pattern is available as a free download on Ravelry, or you can download a .pdf here.

Once you know this technique.  You can customize it using colors and added details.  Like this!

No comments:

Post a Comment