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Old 04-13-2014, 11:25 PM   #1
XtopherCB
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basic hat cast-ons...
finally feeling ready to try a hat on new circular needles (thank you, last minute trip to seattle and a sale at hobby lobby)... but the few patterns i've been drawn to (like http://www.lionbrand.com/cgi-bin/pat...Key=1922244612) have comments suggesting the cast-on stitches are too many even for adult male heads. so for those out there who knit hats regularly, what is your usual basic cast-on amount? thanks much!
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Old 04-14-2014, 12:43 AM   #2
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It really depends on what yarn and needles you're using and your gauge.
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Old 04-14-2014, 02:06 AM   #3
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The Lionbrand pattern linked to recommends a sock-weight yarn whose gauge is 26 stitches in 4 inches, or 6.5 sts/inch. The pattern instructs the knitter to CO 124 sts, or approx. 19 inches in circumference. Given so many stitches and such a small-gauge yarn, this CO should stretch to fit many heads, those of teens as well as most adults. Men with larger-circumference heads may need a few more stitches in the CO.

I make hats quite frequently, but most of mine are crocheted of worsted-weight yarn and have a circumference of 78 double crochet stitches. They fit me very well (21.5" head) and I've seen other women wear them (Chemo Hats), too. Occasionally I run across a "large" worsted-weight yarn, so I work it with a #7 crochet hook rather than the G/6 (4.0mm) hook, and such a hat is definitely for men.

Does that help?
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Old 04-14-2014, 02:23 AM   #4
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DCM - yes that helps, thank you so much! i know it all depends on the gauge we end up with due to the yarn, the needles and our own abilities, but when i saw the comments stating it was too big even for a guy's head i got nervous. since i have a variety of needle sizes and a few interesting yarn choices, i'll give it a go. just hope i don't have to start over too many times. again, thanks for the info!
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Old 04-14-2014, 12:21 PM   #5
Jan in CA
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I make lots of hats with worsted weight and my usual cast on is about 80 with size 7 needles. That seems to fit most heads.
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Old 04-17-2014, 07:43 PM   #6
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I use a #8 American needle with a cast on of about 90 in worsted weight. I like to do mine with a rib stitch, either k1, p1 or k2, p2, whatever you prefer. This hugs the head and stays on better. The experts recommend you figure out your gauge per inch and multiply that for your head circumference. Subtract one inch so it fits better. Knitting will stretch. If you do it exactly according to your head size, your hat will twist around and ride up. You'll constantly be pulling at it to readjust it. It's annoying.

Here's a great one size fits all hat pattern that worked out very well for gifts this past Christmas. It hugs your head like it was custom made. A hint: Use a German twisted cast on for cuffs for hats and mittens. A regular cast on won't stretch enough to allow you to get it over your head or on your hands. Amy has an excellent tutorial for it at the top of the KH site right here under the Casting On section.

http://tanisfiberarts.blogspot.com/2...s-pattern.html
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Old 04-17-2014, 11:23 PM   #7
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Between 72 and 84 in worsted weight works for me, depending on how much ribbing there is and what the pattern stitch is.

I have a big head, but even so, many worsted hat patterns are far too big for me. I always look for the stitch repeat and leave out enough to get it into the range that usually works.
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Old 04-18-2014, 12:47 AM   #8
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Ribbing can be done on fewer stitches with the same needles you'll use for the rest of the hat or you can go down a couple sizes and knit the rib with those. Does the pattern say to do either?
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Old 04-18-2014, 05:53 AM   #9
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It's a good looking hat pattern that should be warm and dense because of the garter stitch used throughout. Since it's fingering weight yarn you'll be casting on more sts that you would with worsted weight. I'd try a gauge swatch first, to make sure of the gauge you're getting with your yarn and your tension as the Lady in PJ's recommended.
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Old 04-18-2014, 06:46 PM   #10
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So glad you posted this topic. I knit hats too big, almost every time. I'll try going down a needle size and casting on a few less stitches. I just ripped out one I'd been working on for a week. It was swimming on my large head, and I'm making it for a small-headed person. So frustrating!

So thank you.
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