Pointy Hats for Newborns

I have to admit, there has been a time or two when presented with a fresh new baby that the words “old man” have crossed my mind. I know, I know, I’m being terrible. But listen, even with their little wrinkled brows and gummy grimaces, newborn babies fill me with wonder and overwhelm me with awe. And anyway, what’s so bad about looking like an old man?

Which is why I love the idea of celebrating a baby’s little-old-man-ness with this hat that seems plucked from the head of woodland gnome. Inspired by Joelle’s chunky-weight Pointy Elf Hat from her book More Last Minute Knitted Gifts, this version is in a laceweight cotton, especially designed for the world’s newest inhabitants.

I made these Pointy Hats for Newborns with Habu’s very elegant Cotton Nerimaki Slub. Textured puffs of cotton lend rich character and a soft, natural feel. And a festive sprout of Koigu Premium Merino Needlepoint Yarn is a perfect little pop of color for a perfect little baby, old man wrinkles and all!

We’ve put together six kits in six different color combinations, from soft and subtle to punchy and bright, for girls, for boys and for the unknown! Choose your favorite right here! -Laura


Get all the yarn you’ll need with the Yarn for Pointy Hats for Newborns kit. It includes…

Pictured above are the six colorways of the Yarn for Pointy Hats for Newborns kit:

  • Nerimaki Slub in Powder + KPM in 0000
  • Nerimaki Slub in Natural + KPM in 2130
  • Nerimaki Slub in Natural + KPM in 2403
  • Nerimaki Slub in Blue + KPM in 2220
  • Nerimaki Slub in Smoke + KPM in 2100
  • Nerimaki Slub in Natural + KPM in 1153

You will also need…


9 1/2 stitches and 13 rows = 1 inch in stockinette stitch


0 to 3 months

  • Finished circumference: 14 inches



With the Main Color, cast on 132 stitches.

Place a marker and join for working in the round, being careful to not twist the stitches.

Round 1: Knit.

Round 2: Purl.

Repeat Rows 1 and 2 three more times.

Next Round: Knit.

Continue working in stockinette stitch, knitting each round until piece measures 3 inches from cast on edge.

Shape the Point

Set Up Round: (K44, place marker) two times, knit to end.

Decrease Round: *K2tog, knit to next marker, slip marker, repeat from * to end of round. (3 stitches decreased)

Next Round: Knit.

Repeat previous two rounds 7 more times. (108 stitches)

Repeat Decrease Round every round until 3 stitches remain.

Cut yarn and thread it onto a tapestry needle to draw it through the remaining 3 stitches. Pull tight and bring tail to the inside of hat and weave in.

Add the Tiny Attatched Tassel

Cut a 24-inch length of the Contrast Color and thread it onto a tapestry needle.

Pinch the tip of the hat with the middle finger and thumb of your non-sewing hand. Bring the needle through the tip of the hat.

Then over the top of your index finger and back through the tip of the hat.

Repeat this, making as many loops as you want (I made 5 loops).

Tightly wrap the around the base of the loops a few times.

Bring the needle up through the center of the tassel.

Cut through the loops and trim the tassel to whatever length you desire.

Weave in your ends.

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25 Responses to Pointy Hats for Newborns

  1. Becky says:

    I am wondering – could this translate to an adult size? Thinking of college kids!

  2. purl bee says:

    Hi Becky-

    We don't have plans to write this in adult sizes at the moment but you might want to check out The Pointy Elf Hat from Joelle's knitting book "More Last Minute Knitted Gifts"

    Or you can look at all of our free hat patterns here:

    Thank you!


  3. Kristin says:

    These are adorable. Quick question: how many hats do you get out of a single kit?


  4. vanessa says:

    this is an adorable little project, but i am having trouble imagining how it will look on a baby and where it will sit on their head. any tiny models around to show it off? thanks!

  5. purl bee says:

    Hello Kristin,
    Thanks for writing in. Great question.
    You can only get one hat per skein, but there is some yarn left over. You could get two hats from three skeins.

  6. purl bee says:

    Hi Vanessa-

    Unfortunately we don't have any newborns around at the moment! But this hat is sized similarly to many other newborn hats.

    If there are any readers out there who have knit this and want to take a picture of it on a newborn please feel free to share it on our Facebook page!



  7. Ashley says:

    So adorable! One quick question just because I'm still learning….why wouldn't you use circular needles for this? Is it too small for that? Do I need to worry about the stitches falling off the double pointed needles when I go to join in the round? Thank you!

  8. Santaannanana says:

    I'm wondering if you can recommend another yarn for these hats. I'm having a lot of trouble with the habu cotton slub breaking while knitting with it. Any suggestions for substitutions? Thanks

  9. purl bee says:

    Hi Santaannanana,
    Just curious, which color were you working in?
    As for substitutions… Here is a link to all of our lace weights:
    I think Jade Sapphire's Sylph would be a fun option. It's airy-ness would lend itself to the stand-up, pointy shape.

  10. purl bee says:

    Hi Ashley,
    Your guess is correct. There are circular needles that go as small as 12 or 8 inches, but they can be very finicky. I typically do not work on circulars smaller than 16 inches which would have been too large for this project. As a result I suggested double pointed needles.

  11. Santaannanana says:

    I purchased the natural color. I have started it several times, working on double pointed as suggested, but the yarn keeps breaking where the slubs are. It just seems to pull apart. I will try one of your other suggested. Thanks for getting back to me

  12. Terry says:

    I recently ordered this yarn for these hats. After knitting a few inches , I realized that this would be way too big for an infant 0-3 months. I checked the Ravelry site to see if there were any finished projects using this yarn . One comment was about the number of stitches to cast on. The author chose to cast on 114 stitches instead of 132. I did not do a gauge swatch but I typically knit true to the gauge . I used a # 1 dp needle. I may try another yarn of the same weight to see how it turns out. I loved this whimsical look for the hats and the texture of the yarn added to the finished hat.
    I have 4 skeins , different colors so I will need to either scale down the cast on, or use it in combination with another yarn.

  13. purl bee says:

    I did have this issue a tiny bit, and almost exclusively with the Natural color. The dyed cottons seems to hold together better when being worked.

    Thank you for taking the time to give me (and our readers) your feedback. It's quite helpful.

  14. purl bee says:

    Hi Terry,

    Thank you for writing in. Please let us know how your gauge ends up working out and if you cast on a different number. Again, thank you for taking the time to share your experience, it's helpful to both us and our other readers.

  15. Barbara says:

    I had the same problem with the slub breaking. Will also try knitting with circular or at least on two circular.

  16. Lana says:

    I like this project, Beautiful hat. Thanks for sharing!

  17. Marci says:

    What is the row gauge for this project? I may be mistaken, but since you knit to a row count rather than to a number of inches, don't we need a row gauge to be sure it will be correct?

    Looking forward to getting started. Thanks.

  18. purl bee says:

    Hello Marci.

    The row gauge is 13 = 1 inch.

  19. Mel says:

    My gauge is also way off despite casting onto size 0 needles. It looks like it could almost fit me! This is especially frustrating because you can't rip back this yarn – it will tear. I hope I have enough left for the hat.

  20. Terry DiMaulo says:

    Third time is a charm! After doing a "reasonably on target" swatch, I cast on the 132 stitches on a 12 " circular needle. I did a 2×2 rib instead of the garter edge. I thought that might help with a snugger fit, I am not convinced it will. I switched to 9" circular and then finally to the double points when the decreasing made that necessary. I knit with Powder and I had no problem with breakage. The tassel color is LIme green from a stash of wool needlepoint yarn I inherited. The finished dimensions are 14" circumference and 6.5" from tip to cast on edge.

  21. Robin Bisland says:

    Casting on and beginning the hat on a 12" circular, then switching, once established, to the dp's, is much easier, since the yarn/thread is so fine and the needles so small. I waited to switch until I began to decrease, in fact. Also, I agree the hat seems a bit large (so far! I'm still finishing up) for a newborn/3-month-old, and wondered if working it on 0s wouldn't give a closer gauge to that. Love the materials though! and colors. Thanks, Robin

  22. Heike says:

    I like that little hat very much but I am not sure if I understand the pattern right!
    Normally, stockinette stitch means knit on the right side and purl on the wrong side, right?
    How does it work with dpn? The edge is scrolling so strong! Did I make a mistake?
    Thanks for your help!

  23. purl bee says:

    Hi Heike,
    Great Questions. Thanks for writing in.
    To create a stockinette stitch fabric when working in the round, on double pointed needles or circular needles, you knit each row because you are always working with the right side facing you. It's so quick and easy!
    As for your edge… Are you working in cotton? Cotton rolls less than wool fibers. Also, once blocked, any edge will relax a bit and roll up less.
    Let us know if you have any other questions.

  24. Michelle says:

    I'm near completion using the Natural. I've had to order another skein because of tangling and breaking. I'm determined to finish it but it has been frustrating.

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