Pattern Review: The Ten Stitch Hat

I recently completed Frankie Brown's Ten Stitch Hat. Frankie Brown has lots of "ten stitch" patterns, most of which are baby blankets.  The basic premise is that you are only ever working flat across ten stitches, creating a strip that coils around itself, and connects to the body of your work at the end of every other row.

I first encountered this concept through Jenny Guay's Five Stitch Dishcloth, which she developed as a way to play with Frankie Brown's concept on a smaller scale. Worked in a square, this technique involves the use of short-rows to create the corners.  One of Frankie Brown's baby blanket patterns, however, is circular, and she used that technique to create a hat pattern.  Like with the corners on the square pattern, the shaping that makes the circle is also achieved through the use of short-rows.  She also creates the appearance of a coil by starting with one stitch and using a combination of increases and short-rows to increase to the ten stitches used for the rest of the project. She creates a smooth end to the coil by decreasing at the same time as she creates the joins at the end of every other row.

The Ten Stitch Hat is a fun pattern. It took me a little bit at the beginning to figure out how to follow the pattern, simply because Brown provides instructions by garter ridge (two rows) rather than by each row. That means that each instruction that would normally be a row actually takes you across the row twice, and remembering that took me a few tries.  I probably shouldn't have started it while sleep deprived. Once I had the hang of reading the pattern, it was really easy, and I got into the rhythm of making the crown. After I made the crown, there was very little thinking until I was ready to decrease at the end of the hat. 

Starting the crown does leave a small gap that you do have to sew up along the way or at the end, which I don't mind, but I think is worth mentioning.

The pattern calls for DK yarn and size 3 (3.25 mm) needles, and the intended gauge makes an adult sized hat.  I used size 3 needles and sport weight yarn, and the smaller gauge made a kid sized hat.  Since the hat I made was intended for my donation stack, any hat that will fit a human head is fine, but it's worth noting that when the pattern says DK, it really means DK.

Overall, the pattern is well-written, has lots of useful instructional photos, and is fun to do.  This is a pattern I'll be keeping on hand for future use, and I really enjoyed making it.

This post has been linked to Busy Monday, Inspire Me MondaySenior Salon, Wonderful Wednesday, The Stitchin' Mommy, and Thursday Favorite Things.