Washable Watch Cap Knit Inside-out

finished watchcap hand knit

A watch cap is pretty simple to make, and can be quite boring once the casing on is done. Any knit one, purl one, pattern can take ages to finish. But it is good and easy enough for evening knitting, when no pattern has to be followed … and I could be drinking wine.

Sometimes I begin a hat with one pattern in mind and switch to another once I get going. I must have some type of ADD or something, but I am doing that a lot recently. (See the Curly Snowflake Hat)

I’m getting a start on some hand-knit Christmas presents for my kids and have wanted to knit a hat for my youngest son. I have some washable Lorna’s Laces yarn so I got started.

Beginning the ribbed watchcap
Cast on 144 stitches and knit one, purl one… on and on

I have tried to do a Tubular Cast-on, but I failed to pull it off. So, now I stick to the Old Norwegian / German Twisted cast-on, which is stretchy and nice for a hat.

I cast on 144 stitches to a size 4 needle. I’m not sure where I got that number or which hat specifically I planned to knit. I have Churchmouse Classics, Ribbed Watch Cap and Beanie pattern, which I have wanted to try, and also a Stockinette Wachcap in my Hat’s On book. Both are similar but the Churchmouse hat has a different decrease at the top, and it’s knit inside out. Neither pattern suggests that number for a cast-on, but I ended up doing the Churchmouse crown decreases. Since my stitch numbers were different I had to do some figuring.

This is “sock” yarn, and the Churchmouse cap calls for fingering yarn also, but in smaller needle sizes, with a larger number cast on. So my hat is looser. But I didn’t begin with this pattern in mind!

Crown, wrong side
Crown, wrong side, which is how it’s knit

The Decreases at the Crown

I was curious as to how this type of inside-out knitting and decreasing would look. Well, if you were curious too, there you have it. In my photo above, which is the wrong side – but knit as the right side until the end – you can see the four decrease sections.

Ribbed watchcap
Ladders! Ugh

The photo above is how the hat looks when it’s turned rightside out. As I was knitting on my DPN’s I had such trouble trying to keep the yarn tight to prevent “ladders”. You can see my difficulty in the finished product. Between each decrease section there is a weird row that doesn’t look right. That is the change between DPN’s where the yarn was looser. I pulled the yarn tight to try to prevent this, but it didn’t work.

I have never had ladder problems before, and I blame the stretchiness of this yarn. I bought my Lorna’s Laces Grand Street Ink color a while ago on sale somewhere, and it’s not cheap. This yarn is nice for making washable items which can also go in the dryer. This hat is for my son who will not be washing anything by hand!

Notes and Observations

I was glad to be done knitting this hat! Haha… But, I would like to try the actual Churchmouse pattern – correct cast-on with the correct yarn – maybe in the “beanie” without the long, rolled brim. It would mean less knitting before the decreases.

Next time I would use something like Rauma Finull wool, which I use for colorwork hats. I think that would turn out very nice, but then it would need hand-washing, so couldn’t give it to my son!

There is the dilemma. Knitting for boys is tough.

finished watchcap hand knit
Finished watchcap – washed and drying

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