Friday, 4 December 2015

Doulton Hat Knitting Pattern

Ah, sigh, Wovember is over - well, not quite, there are still a few last posts going up on the website.  My personal project was a Wovember Hat Pattern and though I haven't finished work on the medium and small sizes and colour variations, here we are in December already and it is definitely woolly hat weather in Wales.  I'm happy with the large size, now I've made it twice, so time to write up the core pattern. 
Joining in with the general celebration of wool, I bought these three 100g skeins of Border Leicester Sheepswool yarn direct from the Doulton Flock, or use this link to Etsy shop.  Compared to the superwash merino I had been working with earlier in the month, my first
impressions of this yarn made me wonder if it was actually a good choice to use for refining the hat pattern. Border Leicester wool yarn felt firm and crisp and though smooth, I wondered how comfortable it was going to be, worn against the forehead.  A pleasant surprise was in store.  Just wait til you have washed the finished knitting - the slip stitch fabric stays very much the same dimensions as before washing, it keeps its body and elasticity, yet gains significantly in softness and flexibility. Doulton Flock yarn has turned out lovely to wear against the skin, plus I bet this hat will last a lot longer than my first, squashy merino one, which already shows signs of pilling.

The Doulton Hat Pattern

These instructions are only for the large size, which measures 58cm in circumference and 20cm in depth. Medium and Small sizes and colour variations are now here.

Knit in stocking stitch on a 4mm circular needle, after washing and laying flat to dry, my gauge came up the same as stated on the yarn information - 20 stitches and 28 rows to 10x10cm.

This pattern uses two kinds of slip stitch, both taken from Margaret Radcliffe's Essential Guide to Color Knitting Techniques and converted for working in the round.  How I love that book, slip stitches are considerably easier than Fair Isle knitting and though the fabric grows more slowly in length, it comes up thicker, which is ideal for warmth.n  All rounds are knitted in one colour only, so you never need to carry strands of yarn along at the back of the work.  Honeycomb Stitch is used doubled over to make a full brim, Two Tone Lattice decorates the body, then the crown is completed in a standard stocking stitch shaped by reduction in quarters.  The slip stitch sections do not shrink in length the way that stocking stitch does when washed.  I would suggest knitting a stocking stitch gauge and changing needle size if it measures up differently to the stated yarn standard.

Two Skeins of Border Leicester Double Knitting Yarn from the Doulton Flock.
70g - about 150m of Main Colour (MC) in photo, dark grey
10g - about 20m of Contrast Colour (CC) in photo, light grey
4mm circular needle or Double Pointed Needles
Darning needle for finishing.

In Main Colour, cast on 108 stitches using longtail cast on for elasticity and a neat edge. Leave an extra metre of wool on the long tail for sewing round the brim at the end. Place marker and join to work in the round.
Honeycomb Brim - all stitches are slipped with the yarn in front.
Round 1  Knit
Round 2  *Purl 1, slip 1 purlwise* repeat to end.
Round 3  Knit
Round 4  *slip 1 purlwise, purl 1* repeat to end.

Repeat rounds 1-4 nine times, using Contrast Colour for rounds 3 & 4 of the second set.
This section forms the brim, which will be folded up on itself with the wrong side of the knitting concealed inside.

To start the body of the hat, arrange the knitting so that the wrong side is facing outwards. The last stitch that was knitted will be the first stitch of the next section as you work back in the opposite direction.

Set Up Round
In Contrast Colour, purl all the way round back to the marker.

Two Tone Lattice Body - all stitches are slipped with the yarn at the back
Round 1 MC *knit 4, slip 2 purlwise* repeat to end
Round 2 MC as Round 1
Round 3 CC as Round 1
Round 4 CC *Purl 4, slip 2 purlwise* repeat to end.
Round 5 MC Knit 1 *slip 2 purlwise, knit 4* repeat to last three stitches, knit 3.
Round 6 MC as Round 5
Round 7 CC as Round 5
Round 8 CC Purl 1 *slip 2 purlwise, purl 4* repeat to last three stitches, purl 3.

Repeat these 8 rounds three times.  On the fourth set, work rounds 1-6 then knit the next round in the Main Colour, placing a marker every 27 stitches.

Shaping the Crown
Decrease Rounds reduce the stitch count by eight stitches as follows
Knit 1, knit 2 together ( knit to 3 stitches before marker, slip 2 stitches knitwise then knit them together, knit 1, slip marker, knit 1, knit 2 together) three times, knit to last 3 stitches, slip 2 stitches knitwise then knit them together.

Decrease Round, then knit 3 rounds (100)
Decrease Round, then knit 3 rounds (92)
Decrease Round, then knit 3 rounds (84)
Decrease Round, then knit 1 round (76)
Decrease Round, then knit 1 round (68)
Decrease Round, then knit 1 round (60)
Decrease Round, then knit 1 round (52)
Decrease Round, then knit 1 round (44)
Decrease Round, then knit 1 round (36)
Decrease Round, then knit 1 round (28)
Decrease Round, removing markers except the first (20)
Knit 2 together 10 times, break yarn and thread it on a needle, pass it through the remaining 10 stitches, pull tight and fasten off.

Use the long tail of yarn at the begining of the work to sew, very loosely, the back of the contrast colour row in the brim to the set up row of the lattice pattern, which secures the turn up of the brim.

Machine wash at 30 degrees on a wool cycle with a wool washing liquid and block lightly while drying.


  1. This is such a lovely hat, and the pattern seems quite straightforward even for a relative beginner like myself :D

    1. Hallo, Yarrow - what an excellent name! I'm glad you like the hat, it is indeed very straightforward to knit. Looking at your blog, I do like the bird skull ceramics. I've been loving The Great Pottery Throwdown programme too, just sorry last night was the final episode.

  2. Thanks for sharing your lovely hat pattern.


    1. My pleasure. Getting to grips with the knitting maths is always a hurdle, but this one went very smoothly.