How to Knit a Basic Baby Hat: Free (and Easy!) Pattern With Step-by-Step Videos

Updated on October 2, 2017
whiteflowerneedle profile image

I'm a knitter, mother, sister, and friend who likes to write cute and simple knit patterns for babies.

There are a lot of reasons to love knitting baby hats. First of all, babies need them in all seasons to cover their small and delicate heads. Not only that, every baby looks adorable in a knit hat, and they are a sweet gift that you can give to friends and family, or to your favorite charity.

This is a great small-scale project for new knitters who want to learn how to knit in the round. Knitters can use either double-pointed needles or a circular needle. For beginners, I added a video to show how to use double-pointed needles.

(c) whiteflowerneedle 2013
(c) whiteflowerneedle 2013

Materials You Will Need

  • Four US #6 (4 mm) double-pointed needles or a circular needle
  • Yarn needle
  • Category 4 medium worsted weight yarn with a total length of approximately 50 to 100 yards: Color A (white) approx. 42 - 86 yards and Color B (yellow) 8 - 14 yards
  • A stitch marker for a circular needle user

Be Sure to Use Soft Baby Yarn

There are many kinds of yarn, and baby yarn is one of the softest for knitting. Choose a soft one for your little angel.

(c) whiteflowerneedle 2013
(c) whiteflowerneedle 2013

Hat Sizes

Age (in Months)
Actual Head Circumference
Hat Circumference
Hat Height
0 - 3
13” ~ 14”
3 - 6
14” ~ 17”
6 - 12
16” ~ 19”

How to Choose a Size

Babies are all different. When you choose to knit a hat, do not rely on age alone —measure the baby's head first.


22 sts x 30 rows = 4” x 4” in stocking sts

(c) whiteflowerneedle 2013
(c) whiteflowerneedle 2013

Abbreviations and Explanations

  • K = Knit
  • P = Purl
  • K2tog = Knit two stitches together

Pattern Instructions

  • With Color A, cast on (64, 80, 96) stitches evenly on three US #6 (4 mm) double-pointed needles. Make sure not to twist and join to knit in the round.


  • Cast on (64, 80, 96) stitches with a US #6 (4 mm) circular needle by using yarn Color A. Make sure not to twist and join to knit in the round. Place a marker to remember the starting stitch.

Rounds 1-4: (K1, P1) around.

Round 5: Change Color B and (K1, P1) around.

Rounds 6-8: (K1, P1) around.

Round 9: Change Color A and (K1, P1) around.

Round 10: (K1, P1) around.

Round 11: K around.

Repeat Round 11 to reach Round (26, 34, 42) OR the hat measures approx. (3.25”, 3.75”, 5.25”) from the cast on edge.

Start to shape top.

Round 1: (K6, K2tog) around. (56, 70, 84) sts

Round 2: K around.

Round 3: (K5, K2tog) around. (48, 60, 72) sts

Round 4: K around.

Round 5: (K4, K2tog) around. (40, 50, 60) sts

Round 6: K around.

Round 7: (K3, K2tog) around. (32, 40, 48) sts

Round 8: K around.

Round 9: (K2, K2tog) around. (24, 30, 36) sts

Round 10: K around.

Round 11: (K1, K2tog) around. (16, 20, 24) sts

Round 12: K around.

Round 13: (K2tog) around. (8, 10, 12) sts

Cut the yarn about 10 inches to work with. With a yarn needle, pull the yarn through all the remaining loops, draw up firmly, fasten securely, and weave in the wrong side of work. Weave in the other ends too.

Have fun!

Note: This pattern is not for commercial use. Please do not resell, distribute or reprint this pattern unless expressly for your own use and convenience.

How to Knit This Hat Pattern Step-by-Step (Video)

I made this video for beginners. It shows how to knit a hat for a baby that's 0 - 3 months old. Hats for 3 - 6 and 6 - 12 month-olds are described in parenthesis. I am using four double-pointed needles in the video. You can also use five double-pointed needles if you want.

Decorate the Hat With a Little Crochet

For baby girls, you can decorate the hat with a beautiful crochet flower, as seen in the examples below. Just imagine how beautiful your baby will be with one on!

(c) whiteflowerneedle 2013
(c) whiteflowerneedle 2013
(c) whiteflowerneedle 2013
(c) whiteflowerneedle 2013
(c) whiteflowerneedle 2013
(c) whiteflowerneedle 2013
(c) whiteflowerneedle 2013
(c) whiteflowerneedle 2013

Video: How to Crochet a Flower to Put on a Baby Hat

This video shows how to crochet a flower to decorate your hat with. This is a cute and fun way to decorate them. It is beautiful but not difficult.

Video: How to Make a Pom Pom

Pom poms work with hats for either boys or girls. Take a look at this video, which shows how to make a pom pom for a hat.

© 2013 whiteflowerneedle


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    • profile image

      Marilyn 2 weeks ago

      Enjoy your pattern for making charity baby hats but using the Magic Loop method. I’m not a fan of dpn or straight needles.

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      Joan Avery 3 months ago

      made your hat size 14-17 and it turned out great. (never made a baby's hat before). Is it possible to make this pattern in a size 21 circumference for big sister?

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      Yolanda Newsome 5 months ago

      Your hats are beautiful and easy, but can you design knitted fruity baby hats with leaves knitted together with different stiches and easy to follow the instructions? I have some but no one has been able to help me to interpret the written instructions.

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      Julia 22 months ago

      T Chandler, yes, that's what I usually do! For this project, it does not matter so much how many stitches are on each individual needle, so long as they are pretty equal.

    • T Chandler profile image

      T Chandler 22 months ago

      Ok, I've been wanting to expand my knit and try dpk. So that means I have to divide the 64 amongst 3 needles? so two get 31 and one gets 32?

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      Irene 2 years ago

      I loved this pattern. After watching the video I was able to successfully make this cute hat on DP needles. It was a real step ahead for me in my knitting adventure. I was sure I couldn't use DP needles but now I will be using them more often. Thank you Christy Hill.

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      Alisson 2 years ago

      I love this! But I screwed up, I need to go back but don't know how to un-do/un-knit - what do I do? Thanks for your help :)

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      Lisa 2 years ago

      I used 9" circular needles and it was a bit tight at the end after decreasing, but it's manageable.

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      Newbie 3 years ago

      Forgive me typo... The word should be try!

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      Newbie 3 years ago

      As simple as this pattern is, you should explain to novice knitters who trimy it that it cannot be completed in circular needles unless they are using the magic loop or then must switch to double pointed needle once they start to decrease. The decreased number of stitched will be too tight to fit "16 circular needle after a few rows of decreasing

    • whiteflowerneedle profile image

      whiteflowerneedle 3 years ago

      Hi Roseann, Some people likes row by row instructions but I should put the measurements too. Thanks for asking.

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      Roseann 3 years ago

      Instead of counting rows by any chance did you just measure up from the bottom for sizing?

    • whiteflowerneedle profile image

      whiteflowerneedle 4 years ago

      Thank you for comment :)

    • purl3agony profile image

      Donna Herron 4 years ago from USA

      This is a sup cute pattern. I love how fun, quick, and adorable baby patterns are! Voted up and thanks for sharing!!