Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Baby Giraffe Hat

When my brother and sister-in-law went to get my niece's birth announcement shots, the photographer used a giraffe hat for one of the scenes. They fell in love with the hat, so this trip out I decided to whip one up for my little giraffe.

As always, I present this pattern to you for free with the understanding that it's mine. Mine, I tell you! Do not copy or sell this pattern, or the hats you make with it, without my permission. This pattern is for personal and charity use only. Kthx.

Techniques You'll Need:
- Magic Circle
- Chain (ch)
- Singe crochet (sc)
- Half-double crochet (hdc)

- Crochet in Spirals & Rounds
- Increase
- Decrease
- Stitching

Extra Things You'll Need:
- Stitch marker
- Polyfill
- Darning Needle

Baby Giraffe Hat
Yarn: Red Heart Super Saver Yellow (main color); Bernat Solids (secondary color)
Gauge: Red Heart Super Saver: 9 hdc x 8 rows = 2.5 inches
Hook: US G (4.00mm)

My niece, whom this was made for, has a rather large noggin'.  She's six months but wears 12 month clothes now. I made the hat with a little bit of room for her to grow, so I'd say it's a 12-18 month hat... you should adjust accordingly. I'll present the pattern the way I made it, and include modifications  for the following sizes:
12-18 [0-3, 3-6, 6-12, T]
I haven't tested the other sizes, please let me know if they need adjusting. If you're making an adult version, the mods are on you ;)

The body is crocheted in the round, using the hdc stitch.
R1: Using the Magic Circle technique, sc 8 into the ring. Mark your last stitch.
R2: 2hdc in each stitch around (16)
R3: *hdc, 2hdc, repeat around from * (24)
R4: *hdc 2, 2hdc, repeat around from * (32)
R5: *hdc 3, 2hdc, repeat around form * (40) [Stop here for 0-3]
R6: *hdc 4, 2hdc, repeat around form * (48) [Stop here for 3-6]
R7: *hdc 5, 2hdc, repeat around from * (56) [If making T size, work another round with 6 hdc between increases]

Now for the mindless bit.. Hdc in a spiral until the hat measures about 5.5" [4", 4.5", 5", 6"] from the starting point for an baby size hat, 12-18 months. Work more rounds for a larger hat, less for smaller. I find that my rounds measure about .25 inches each.

Bind off main color & attach secondary. Work 1 round (not spiral) of secondary color. Bind off & weave in ends.

Horns (is that what they're called?):
Start with secondary color. Make two!

R1: Using Magic Circle, sc 8 into the ring
R2: 2sc in each stitch around (16)
R3-6: sc in each stitch around
R7: sc2tog around (8)
Switch to main color.
R8-12: sc around [Add more or less rounds here as you see fit for the size you're working towards]
Bind off & cut yarn so you have a 10" tail.

Weave in ends from start and color change. Stuff horns so that they're nice and firm, but not so much that the filling shows.

The ears are made in the main color, worked flat. Make two!

R1: ch 2 turn & sc into 2nd stitch from hook, ch & turn
R2: 2sc into stitch, ch & turn
R3: 2sc into each stitch, ch & turn
R4: 2sc, sc, sc, 2sc, ch & turn
R5: 2sc, sc, sc, sc, sc, 2sc, ch & turn
R6-7: sc all stitches, ch & turn at ends
R8: sc2tog
Bind off & cut yarn with 10" tail. Weave end from start.

As you might have noticed, my hat doesn't have spots. I made them but then decided I didn't want them. But! If you want to add spots, here's what I did:

Using secondary color, work in rounds, not a spiral!
R1: Using Magic Circle,  5 hdc into ring
R2: 2hdc in each stitch around (10).
Make 7 spots for base size hat, or more/less as you see fit.

Assemble the hat using the pictures on this page as a guide. For the ears, I attached them to the hat a bit curved, so they naturally folded. The horns I placed a bit behind the center of the hat, on the back side. If you decide to add spots, just do what feels natural ;)

Weave in all your ends, place on your giraffe, and enjoy!


  1. Hello, I am just starting with crocheting and was wondering if you could explain what the following means:

    "crochet in a spiral until the hat measures...". If I want to make a head for 0-3 months I am going to stop at R5. How do I continue from there? What stitch do I use from there to continue the spiral?

    For the second color, working 1 round (not spiral), does that mean that I connect the first and last stitch with slip stitch?

    Thank you so much for any help you can provide. I am hoping to finish this hat before my baby arrives ;)


    1. So when working in the round, in a spiral, you just keep crocheting around and around, not doing a slip stitch at the end of each round. This is why counting your stitches and markers are important, to help keep track of where a round actually ends.

      If you're going to end on Round 5, then yes, you'll slip stitch the first and last stitch together.

      Lemme know if you have anymore issues.

  2. Hi Tiffany,

    Thanks so much for replying back so quickly. I have reached round 5 but it doesn't seem to be enough to make a hat, even for a newborn. I am just wondering if I need to continue with another pattern as you wrote in your instructions to continue until the hat measures 4". I mean the sentence that starts with "now for the mindless bit, continue...". With what pattern do I continue here?
    Also when you say the hat has to measure 4", do you mean the radius, so from the middle to the bottom/end?

    I am sure that your instructions are very clear to someone who has crochet for a while. I really appreciate your help. Although I am struggling a bit here I am still enjoying this crochet project a lot and can't wait to see the final product ;)


    1. Heya Elena,

      So yeah, now that you've gone to Round 5, you do the "mindless bit." Just crochet until the hat measures 4" when you lay it flat on a table (like in the first hat pic on, from the crown (starting point) to the brim. I just clarified in the instructions, but you should be doing hdc's for the entirety of the "mindless bit."

      Lemme know if you need anymore help, I pretty much live next to a computer ;)


  3. Hi Tiffany,

    Wow, thank you so so much for clarifying. Everything makes sense now ;) Very kind of you that you respond so quickly. Can't wait to continue now.

    Have a great evening.

  4. Hi Tiffany,

    I finished the hat yesterday. This was my very first crochet project and it turned out so cute. I am so excited and just wanted to thank you again for answering all my questions.

    Have a great day!

  5. Was wondering how you go about competing row 3 of this pattern? am i still supposed to put 2 hcd in each pervious hole - i was having trouble commpleting this *hdc is this a single hdc in a single hole ? 2hcd and continue around from 24 ? confused

    I have completed many crochet patterns but cannot follow this

    Please Help - Also i was wondering what hcc is and how this works?

    Thank you Narelle

    1. Hi Narelle,

      In the previous round, you should have ended with 16 stitches. In round 3 you'll hdc in the 1st stitch, then 2hdc in the 2nd stitch (which means, yes, that you do 2 hdc in a single hole). Then you just repeat those two steps (hdc then 2hdc) until you've completed the round. When done with the round, you should have 24 stitches. This notation is shorthand that I've learned from a lot of hat patterns I've found online. Translated literally, Round 3 is:

      hdc, 2hdc, hdc, 2hdc, hdc, 2hdc, hdc, 2hdc, hdc, 2hdc, hdc, 2hdc, hdc, 2hdc, hdc, 2hdc

      hcc is a typo, my bad! Thanks for pointing it out :D

  6. Hi Tiffany, I am in Australia if you are wondering about the funny times appearing on the clock! Thank you for your help - I seem to be having problems getting it to curl into a hat - I have been trying to figure out where i am going wrong

    I think i understand this - 1 hdc in first hole and then 2 hdc in next- 1 hdc 2hdc until you get to 24 right?
    Same on next row but you put 1 hdc in first hole 1hdc in second hole and then 2 hdc in next - 1hdc,1hdc,2hdc until 32.
    am i understanding this correctly?

    i was also wondering if i am using baby wool - this will be really small right!

    Hopefully I will be able to figure it out

    Thanks very Much

    Cheers Narelle

    1. Sorry for the really slow reply..

      You're understanding correctly, yes. And yes, if you use baby wool, it'll be smaller than mentioned in the pattern. I used and made the design for worsted weight yarn, so baby-size will turn out rather small. You can try crocheting with two strands at a time to get to gauge, if you like.

  7. Lovely hat , I will make this one :) I hope it ends over the ears on the little one.. I comes comment here again when it is finnished. and link in my blog where i find this pattern..

    DS: I must borrow my friend google account because i dont have google account and you dont have Name/ URL to comment.. Can you change it ?? You do it in the setting i think.. ( you have these to choose between google, AIM, wordpress, LiveJournal, Typepad and OpenId) It would be great if you could change it :D

    Love Erica from Sweden

  8. Starting this soon and have a question: after every round do I sl st? As in after making my magic circle and the 8 sc, do I sl at and then move on to the next row and so forth?

  9. Lovely fur hat with the cut child.