A few people have emailed or commented asking for the hat pattern, which makes me laugh, because I knit a lot like I cook, which is to say I assemble the basic ingredients, fudge my way through, and hope for the best. (Though this is the part where it’s helpful for me to tell you that this usually works better with food than with yarn). This is not my own pattern (hah!), but I have no idea where I got the pattern to begin with, so I can’t give credit where credit is due, but I’ve adjusted it along the way.
Anyway, here ’tis:
I used a soft merino wool. I got one dark green skein for the leaves, and so far have managed to make 4 of these hats out of the leftover merino from a sweater and one fresh ball – and there’s still enough for probably one more hat, so it goes a long way.
Gauge doesn’t actually matter much in this case, since babies’ heads change size pretty quickly. For a newborn, size 8 needles work well, and for 3-6 months size 9 needles. I used size 10 on the striped hat and cast on 60 instead of my usual 54 or 56 for an 8-month old with a lovely and very large head.
Cast on 54 or so stitches and get going in stockinette. If you feel like doing stripes instead of a fruit hat, you can start about an inch and a half in – this gives you plenty of room for the roll at the bottom. If you don’t like a rolled bottom, work the first 3 or 4 rows in garter stitch to keep it flat, or you can get fancy and do a little picot brim (which I did once for a friend’s baby before Roo was born, and it was very cute, but it completely escapes me now how I did it).
Work in stockinette for about 4 inches. Then start your decreases:
Knit 7, knit 2 together around.
Knit 6, knit 2 together.
Knit 5… you get the idea. When you get to knit 3, knit 2 together, you’ll want to switch to the dark green for the stem. After you’ve knit 1, knit 2 together, keep going around and around in stockinette until your stem is as long as you like it. A word of warning: I always get sick of using double pointed needles, which make me feel like I am all thumbs, so I stop too early, but be ye not so stupid: a long stem looks really cute.
For the leaves: use dark green yarn. You can switch to smaller needles if you want to (size 3 works well) but it’s just fine to keep using the same size needles you were using for the hat, since the gauge doesn’t really matter.
Cast on 3 stitches and knit 2 rows in garter stitch.
Continue in garter stitch increasing at beginning and end of the next 2 rows (7 stitches total).
Work 5 more rows in garter stitch, then decrease 1 stitch at beginning and end of the next 2 rows (3 stitches).
Slip the next stitch to the other needle, knit 2 together, and bind off. Attach them to your hat – you can attach them all around, so they’re more secure, or just near the stem so they’ll curl up a little. It’s cute either way!
You can make this adult size too – use size 10 or even 12 needles and a thicker wool, and cast on something more like 80 stitches.