Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Slouchy Cabled Beret Knitting Pattern

Hi All,
I have just finished knitting this hat for myself, which I adapted from some previous patterns (as I never seem to find exactly what I am looking for) and I thought I would share it with you. This hat is finer and more roomy that previous hats I have knitted as I am growing an afro and I need my hats to expand so I can fit in all my hair. I also recently shrunk the last hat I made for myself by washing it in the machine, which has taught me a harsh lesson to hand wash all my woollens, as much as I hate it. 
Back to the hat, the beret shape is a bit more interesting and can be worn in more ways that a traditional beanie, despite being just as easy to knit.
You will need:
·         Yarn: 100g Rowan Pure Wool Aran, or any wool of a similar weight.
·         Needles: 4x 4mm double pointed needles (dpns) and one cable needle
·         A darning needle for weaving in ends.

Stitch abbreviations
K- knit stitch
P- Purl stitch
C3F (Cable three forward)- place the next three stitches on a cable needle and hang at the front (right-side) of your work, knit the next three stitches on the left hand needle before knitting the three stitches off the cable needle being careful not to twist the stitches.
M1(make one)- insert the needle into the next stitch, wrap the yarn around and bring to the front as you do with a normal knit stitch, but before you lift the stitch off the left hand needle knit another stitch through the back loop.
P2tog- purl 2 stitches together
SSP (Slip slip purl)- this is a left leaning decrease which complements the right leaning P2tog. Insert your needle into the next stitch as you would for a knit stitch and slide it onto the right hand needle, repeat for the next stitch. Slip the two stitches back onto the left hand needle. With the yarn in front purl the stitches together, inserting the needle up through the back of both stitches (through the back loop)
K2tog- knit 2 stitches together

1.    Ribbed edge
Cast on 96 stitches. I used long tail cast on method which creates a stretchy edge good for rib stitch. Split the stitches between three of the double-pointed needles and join to round, being careful not to twist the stitches.
Rows 1-8: K2, P2 (rib stitch)
Row 9: K1, k1, M1

You should now have 144 stitches split across your 3 needles, and be ready to start the cable pattern.

2.    Cable Pattern- body of the hat
[The hat pictured here is cabled every 4th row, which creates this very tight almost spiral cable pattern. For a more traditional cable pattern you can cable every 6th or 8th row instead]

Row 10, 11 & 12: K2, P2, K6, P2, repeat to end (12 times in total)
Row 13: K2, P2, C3F, P2, repeat to end.

Repeat rows 10-13 for 36 more rows.
N.B. Knitting the crown decrease will add approximately 3 inches to the hat. If you need/want to increase the length of the body of the hat, you may need additional wool.

[Tip: the good thing about knitting on dpns is that you get a good sense of what the hat will look like finished and you can try it on as you go, but be careful not to drop
any stitches!]

3.  Begin decrease for crown (cabling where necessary, although this is not essential and you may wish to stop the cables at the start of the crown).

Row 1: K2, P2, K5, P2tog, P1, K2, P1, SSP, K5, P2, rep to end (132)
Row 2: Pattern
Row 3: K2, P2, K5, P2tog, K2, SSP, K5, P2, rep to end (120)
Row 4: Pattern
Row 5: K2, P2, K4, P2tog, K2, SSP, K4, P2, rep to end (108)
Row 6: Pattern
Row 7: K2, P2, K3, P2tog, K2, SSP, K3, P2, rep to end (96)
Row 8: Pattern
Row 9: K2, P2, K2, P2tog, K2, SSP, K2, P2, rep to end (84)
Row 10: Pattern
Row 11: K2, P2, K1, P2tog, K2, SSP, K1, P2, rep to end (72)
Row 12: Pattern
Row 13: K2, P2, P2tog, K2, SSP, P2, rep to end (60)
Row 14: Pattern
Row 15: K2, P1, P2tog, K2, SSP, P1 rep to end (48)
Row16: Pattern
Row 17: K2, P2tog, K2, SSP, rep to end (36)
Row 18 Pattern
Row 19: K, K2tog, K, SSK, rep to end (24)
Row 20: Pattern
Row 21: K2tog, SSP, rep to end (12)
Row 22: Pattern
Row 23: K2tog, rep to end (6)
Row 24: pattern
Row 25: K, K2tog.rep to end (4)
Row 27: K2tog, k2tog (2)

Cut yarn and pull through the last two stitches on the needles. Pull tight and weave in all ends.
Finished hat before blocking

To achieve the traditional beret shape the hat will need blocking. To do this you need to stretch the hat over regular dinner plate and gently steam using a medium to hot iron. The hat will require a good steam but be careful to overdo it or get the iron too hot or close to the wool which could cause felting, which is the last thing you want after all your hard work! After steaming leave the hat to cool on the plate for several hours or overnight, then wear and enjoy!

This is the first pattern I have posted so let me know if you make it and email me with any questions.

Happy knitting

After Blocking


  1. Really cute! I'm going to keep an eye out for you and your beautiful creations that you'll be doing.
    I will try this pattern soon.
    Thank you,

    1. Thanks Jean,

      Glad you like it! Youll have to let me know if anything in the pattern doesn't make sense and how you get on with it. I will try and think up some new patterns soon.

  2. Hi Jemilah-

    I love this pattern and I've been trying to follow it, but I'm confused: if you cast on 96 stitches, when you get done with the ribbing and do the K1 M1 row, you end up with 192 stitches, not 144, don't you?

    It seems like either you should cast on 72 to begin with, or else there's something else going on that I'm missing. Can you help?

    Also, if you're interested, my knit blog is



    1. Hi Jennifer,

      Glad you are trying out the pattern. You should end up with 144 stitches as you are increasing every other stitch. You would end up with 192 stitches if you increase every stitch. So knit the first stitch as usual, then move onto the next stitch where you will do an increase (e.g. Knit into the front then the back of the stitch). Hope this is explanatory, happy knitting.

  3. when decreasing, row 2 says pattern. what does that mean?

    1. Hi Amanda,

      Pattern means work that row, following the pattern as set by the row above. I just realised I made a mistake in row 1 of the crown decrease, which I have corrected to read:
      K2,P2,K5,P2TOG,P1,K2,P2,SSP,K5,P2 repeat to end. In row 1 you have now decreased each set of 6 knit stitches in a row to 5 knit stitches in a row. therefore Row 2 will be: K2,P2,K5,P2,K2,P2,K5,P2,repeat to end. In row 3 you have reduced two of the sets of 2 two purl stitches to one purl stitch, therefore Row 4 will be, K2,P2,K5,P1,K2,P1,K5,P2, repeat to end. I abbreviated it to "patt" so you can continue to cable where you decided to. If you are cabling every 4 rows like I did you will include a cable on rows 4 and 8 of the crown decrease. However as you are reducing the number of stitches in the cable rows, in row four you only have 5 knit stitches, so move 3 stitches onto a cable needle, knit the remaining 2 stitches and then knit the three stitches off the cable needle, in row 8 you have only have 3 knit stitches left, so move two onto a cable needle, knit 1 stitch and then knit the two stitches off the cable needle.

      I hope this long reply is helpful, but come back to me if not! Sorry for the mistake, copying out patterns is not easy!