“Color Dipped Hat” by machine

I often see little hand knit projects that I like and want to make by machine. This pattern is a project of that nature. Purl Soho has a beautiful free hand-knitting pattern for a fisherman’s rib hat which can be worked with only a few modifications on any standard gauge double bed machine, and it comes in four sizes: baby, toddler/kid, teen/adult small, and adult large!  See more and more beautiful images at their site (click through the link above or picture below).

The “Color-Dipped” Hat from Purl Soho. Image ©Purl Soho. Click through this picture to go to their hand-knitting pattern.

The hat is in full fisherman’s rib, worked in two colours at the base of the hat.  Fisherman’s rib is a basic double-bed machine stitch in which needles first tuck, and then knit.  The needle setup is a 1:1 ribbing setup (alternate needles on each bed).

We have to make some modifications to the pattern because a) we will need to knit this hat flat; b) some machines can only change colours after two rows, so a two-row pattern is given. The basic procedure is given below, but please reference the original website for further details.

Here is my machine- knitted version. Baby size.  I knitted this with some unlabelled sock wool in grey and burgundy on my Passap Duomatic 80.  The stripe pattern was worked with the locks set for 2 rows N/AX and two rows AX/N, changing the colour every two rows.  Stitch size 5.

Yarn: two colours of wool, fingering/sock weight, 450m/100g.  A yarn with a bit of a halo would give a nice shadowed effect. About 50g MC and 20g CC for baby size. More like 100g MC and 40g CC for adult large.

Gauge: 24 stitches and 36 rows = 10 cm or 4 inches in Fisherman’s Rib. Note: this is the hand knitting gauge. The machine gauge is 24 sts x 72 rows – we do two rows for each hand knit row, since our tuck stitches require a separate row to our knit stitches. Fun fact I learned when converting this pattern.

Stitch patterns:

One-colour fisherman’s rib:

  • Row 1: main bed knits, secondary bed tucks.
  • Row 2: main bed tucks, secondary bed knits

Two-colour reversible fisherman’s rib:

  • Rows 1-2.  Colour 1: main bed knits, secondary bed tucks.
  • Rows 3-4. Colour 2: main bed tucks, secondary bed knits.

Body of Hat

Cast on 88 (104, 120, 136) stitches in 1:1 rib. Hang a cast on comb if you have one.

Work 40 (48, 56, 60) rows in two-colour reversible fisherman’s rib.

Work 88 (88, 116, 116) rows in one-colour fisherman’s rib. Use edge weights to help the edge stitches knit off properly.

Crown of Hat

tried, I really tried to make this hat with evenly spaced decreases, but I could not do it. Here’s my solution for working the crown of the hat.

Reduce the number of stitches by half. Lift each stitch onto its neighbor, manually knitting through the tuck loops before lifting. Rack the beds so secondary bed stitches are exactly between main bed stitches. If necessary, transfer edge stitches across the bed to maintain pattern.

Work 6 rows and reduce stitch size slightly. Repeat twice more.

Knit one final row of ordinary 1:1 ribbing. Take stitches off onto yarn and pull top closed.


Stitch the seam both inside and out with mattress stitching, using contrast colour yarn where appropriate.

Little Johnny loves his new hat! He is nearly 3 and the “baby” hat stretches just fine.


You could knit this all in one colour, of course.  You could make a matching striped fisherman’s rib scarf.  Solid one colour, stripes on the back (ombre stripes, for example)?


I knit this hat three times, and the crown decreases are to blame; the technique I give above was by far the best of the ones I tried.  You must also check your selvedges carefully – since the hat is seamed, extra loops at the edges are difficult to hide.


    • Do you have a chunky double-bed as well? I ask because Purl Soho just came out with a pattern for matching scarf in a chunky wool. Looks beautiful. I only have a single-bed chunky but of course one could make a scarf on the standard machine as well.

      Please let me know if you do end up doing a project!


  1. Definitely going to try this, I think you’ve done a great job! I was just looking at the purl soho hat and wishing it was a machine knit pattern. So thank you ❤️


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