Knitting The “Skiff” Cable Beanie Pattern

Skiff Hat with cables

I’m back to knitting hats, and this pretty cable hat caught my eye. It’s called the Skiff Hat by Jared Flood. The hat can be knit as a Beanie or Watchcap and I chose the beanie as a trial. I’m not an experienced cable knitter and had to see if I could figure this out. I could… it’s easy, but it’s all in chart form, and I had to do some pre-knitting preparation.

Skiff Hat

Many previous Skiff Hat knitters remarked that their hats came out very big. The pattern calls for Brooklyn Tweed Shelter yarn, which is a worsted weight. I’ve never knit with Shelter, but I have knit with Quarry, which I think is similar only chunkier.

Skiff Hat knitting pattern

One suggestion was to use DK yarn instead of worsted and go down a needle size, or more (yes, more). I used the size called for on the ribbing and went down one needle size for the top. I could have gone even smaller.

For this trial knit, I choose to use up some yarn in my stash. The lighter blue is Madeline Tosh “Baltic” and the darker color is “Dubrovnik”, I think, and both are DK weight.

The semi-solid blue is very pretty, but the color stained my fingers and my bamboo needles! I wasn’t too happy about that. The yarn would also occasionally split when I was trying to do some of the stitches.

Bamboo needles turning blue from yarn dye
Blue dye colored my bamboo needles

End Thoughts on Knitting “Skiff”

The beanie did come out large. It’s loose around the cuff and tall on my head, and I consider my head to be average size. I am still waiting for it to dry, but I don’t anticipate it to become smaller.

The hat is knit from a chart with perfect explanations for each of the cables. One of the cable stitches uses two cable needles, but it’s pretty easy to do and I enjoyed seeing the twisting of the stitches bring this beauty to life.

Skiff hat pattern with cables
Washed and drying flat

Directions for a tubular cast-on are included with the pattern and I found it difficult, so I used the Old Norwegian / German Twisted cast-on.

Helpful Things

Before I began knitting, I went through the pattern Legend, showing all the stitches, and cables, and I used color pencils to differentiate each type of cable on the chart.

I also wrote out the cables next to each color on the Legend page, such as 2F, K2, K2 for the pink color – So when I saw the pink cable in my row, I would know to slip 2 onto the cable needle and hold to the front, knit two regular, then knit two from the cable needle. This was a big help for me, because the printing is tiny on the pattern, and my eyesight is poor.

DPNs Work as Cable Needles

I used DPN’s in place of cable needles throughout, which worked fine. At the crown I used 3 DPNs to hold the stitches, one to knit, and another to do the cables. Five DPN’s is all you need. I also did one extra round after the pattern ends, with a K2tog all the way around. Otherwise you are left with an enormous number of stitches to pull up with yarn to close the opening.

The Watchcap version is the one I want to make, with a wide roll brim and pompom. I’d like to make it for my daughter, who has a small head, so I’ll have to figure out how to knit it differently. I definitely need to use smaller needles and possibly fewer stitches around the brim, with an increase before the cable pattern begins.

Skiff hat crown
Top of hat

More Fun Hats I Have Knit

9 thoughts on “Knitting The “Skiff” Cable Beanie Pattern

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