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Math4Knitters, Crafty Living: Show 52

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Laura J. Gardner - The Journal Gazette
This child has superpowers of cuteness.

Math4Knitters, Crafty Living: Show 52

Laura J. Gardner - The Journal Gazette
Is she surprised that her hat is standing up a bit?

This is the last podcast of this year, so I asked and, graciously, was given some of the incomparable Meg Swansen's time this week.

Laura J. Gardner - The Journal Gazette
A tubular cast off helps keep everything nice and loose around the brim of the hat - but a sewn cast off would work, too.

Bonjour Baby Beret

The pattern this week is a re-imagination of one of the dishcloths from this summer. I took it, worked it in a different yarn, added another wedge, and turned it into a baby-sized beret. Oh, and I worked in alternating colors, so it has all of the fun striping effects I explored in Mostly Sideways Mittens.

My question, to begin with, was how big should the top of the beret be? Let's call it a platter, just to simplify the language. Maybe a 12" (across) platter and a 19" (around) head would be a normal adult size. That is a 38" platter around a 19" head. Exactly twice the circumference.

Gauge: 4.5 stitches/inch

Desired head size: 15 inches (newborn to about 12 months, according to this chart

Desired hat brim size (10% smaller than head size): 13.5 inches

Number of stitches needed at brim: 13.5 x 4.5 about 61 stitches. Let's round that up to 64 to make our math more simple.

So, we would want a 13.5" hat brim for a 15" head and a 30" platter on the hat - which is about 9.5" across, when we divide by Pi.

Cast on half that many, 4.75", stitches to start the whole thing - around 21 stitches. The platter of the hat is worked back-and-forth in short rows to create a round shape.

Add in the color changes with every garter-stitch stripe and you get a very nice, fun, and easy little hat to make, indeed. The mom of our size-tester and model declares that it even keeps her baby's ears warm. So, there's that. The name comes from what the baby's father said when he saw her wearing it, "Bonjour, Juliet!"

Laura J. Gardner - The Journal Gazette
The brim's ribbing is a little deeper than normal to keep baby's ears toasty and warm.


I can't really express in words how much I enjoy talking with Meg Swansen. She is so generous to share her time and thoughts with me and all of you. I hope you enjoy it. There are many, many links to our topics, books, and other verbal rambles.

Laura J. Gardner - The Journal Gazette
This is an aerial view - the top of the hat features some garter-stitch-rib striping that's a fun way to experiment with color.

Knitter's Almanac Commemorative Edition

Dover Publications

Schoolhouse Press


Stephanie Pearl-McPhee

Andrew Wyeth

Jeannine Bakriges, author of Spinning Around

Diagonal Knitting

Review of Diagonal Knitting on Knitter's Review

Knit One Knit All

Cheryl Oberle

Double Knitting (photos are by Meg)

Vogue Knitting

Purl When You Can is one of Meg Swansen's unventions (her term). It is covered in several books, including Meg Swansen's Knitting and Sweaters From Camp.

Speaking of Sweaters From Camp, Meg is working on revising and re-issuing the techniques and patterns from the book, so if you don't have $150 just burning away in your pocket to get a copy right now, don't despair.

Knit. Sock. Love. by Cookie A is available both as a printed book and an electronic book. Or buy both together.

Carol Anderson writes Cottage Creations Patterns

Traditional Pound Cake

America's Knitting Book

The Right Way to Knit

Barbara G. Walker's Knitted Doll Outfits - A Photo Gallery at Schoolhouse Press

Direct Link: Bonjour Baby Beret Pattern