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How to Crochet a Hat without a Pattern

After years of trying to crochet following a pattern, often with disasterous results, I decided to try crocheting without a pattern and simply crochet in the round and see what happened -- with delightful results.  For visitors to my website who know how to crochet, here are simple instructions for a basic brim hat if you wish to try your hand at crocheting without a pattern.

I use a K crochet hook for many of my hats but it depends on the yarn.  For LionBrand Homespun, I use a K or L hook and sometimes even an N hook depending if I want a stiffer hat (J) or a softer floppier hat (L or N)

Start by chaining 3.  Now single crochet (sc) into the first chain.  Continue making single crochet (sc) into the first chain

how to crochet a hat without a pattern

until back to the first sc.

how to crochet a hat without a pattern

Now sc into the first sc on the circle, starting the next round.  And sc into that same stitch again.  Sc into the next stitch in the round and again sc into that same stitch again.

Continue this pattern around the circle (do two sc in each stitch).

Now continue crocheting with single crochet around your expanding circle.  Here’s where the pattern is not needed.  What you want is a flat lying circle so you will probably need to sc again in each stitch to keep the circle laying flat, but at some point, you will notice that you won’t need to increase in every stitch.  Simply smooth the circle on your lap to see if it looks like a stretch to move to the next stitch and in that case, sc in the same stitch again before moving to the next stitch along the circle.  If you increase too often the circle will start to have a wavy edge.  If you don’t increase enough, the circle will start to bow up in a bowl shape.  The goal is to keep the circle fairly flat until the diameter of the circle measures about ½” less than the desired hat size:












Hat Size Circumference of head in inches
6 18.7
6 1/8 19.1
6 1/4 19.5
6 3/8 19.9
6 1/2 20.3
6 5/8 20.7
6 3/4 21.1
6 7/8 21.5
7    21.9
7 1/8 22.3
7 1/4 22.7
7 3/8 23.1
7 1/2 23.4
7 5/8 23.8
7 3/4 24.2
7 7/8 24.6
8    25

So for example, for a head circumference of 22.5” you would want to make a flat circle about 6.75” in

diameter (7 ¼ hat size - ½  = 6 ¾”). 

At this point, crochet a few rounds of the circle without increasing (ie, don’t sc twice in the same stitch.)  This will cause the hat to start to form a bowl shape.  When I first started making hats without a pattern, I would occasionally try the hat on myself to check the fit.  As you continue to crochet around the circle you will need to occasionally increase (two sc in the same stitch) since the goal is a hat with a diameter equal to the hat size (7 ¼ in this case).  Again, trying the hat on, as you go, is the best way to judge if you need to continue to increase or not.  For a basic brim style hat, simply continue the single crochet around and around until the hat is an appropriate length to turn up for a brim to your liking.  Finish off by slip stitching several stitches (or a complete round of slip stitches, although this takes some of the stretchiness out of the finished edge of the hat) to give a smooth edge, then fasten off, cut the yarn, and weave in the yarn tail to complete the hat.

Once you have the hang of making a basic brim hat without a pattern, you will be ready to experiment on your own.  Try making a hat using double crochet instead of single crochet.  Or end the hat at the base of one’s ears to make a skullcap style hat.  To make a flapper style hat simply increase your stitches at a regular interval once the hat is at the length of a skullcap to make a flaired brim to the hat.  Experiment and have fun!

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Our hats are hand crocheted, not based upon a pattern but instead, letting the flow of the motion and the spirit define each hat.  Many of our hats are custom orders.  If you see a style of hat but would prefer a different color or size, we would be honored to create a hat uniquely made for you. Simply

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