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Laura's Loop: Petite Popover

They were skeptical at first, but I think I’ve finally convinced my colleagues of the magnificence of the dickie! I mean, seriously, what could be better?
No worrying about cramming layers into layers, just pop it on over a shirt or sweater, under a coat or jacket. Snug as a bug, I say! Your baby or tot's core will be toasty warm and his or her arms, flexible and free. Plus, this one has a cozy hood, eliminating one more thing bound to fall behind at the park or sadly slip out of a pocket.
Can you feel my soapbox enthusiasm? I do not exaggerate when I write that for a solid year of meetings I have espoused the renaissance of the dickie. And let’s be honest, the majority of my co-workers'  doubt focussed on the name. “Dickie” is not nearly as cute or endearing as Popover! (Thank you for the re-brand, Whitney!)
So here is my attempt to resurrect the dignity of the side-less vest. Knit in classic Worsted, rich, organic merino from Swans Island, and another in the super soft, plush and elegant 8-Ply Cashmere from Jade Sapphire. One needle. One little hood seam. Two classic stitch patterns. From both a knitter’s and a parent's point of view, it’s a no-brainer!
So, what do y’all think?!?! Can we bring back the dickie? Say yes!

The Materials

  • For the Gray Popover: 1 (1, 2) skein of Swans Island’s Worsted, 100% organic merino. This color is Seasmoke.
  • For the Ecru Popover: 2 (3, 4) skeins of Jade Sapphire’s 8-ply Cashmere,100% Mongolian cashmere. This color is Ivory.
  • A US #8, 16-inch circular needle
  • Stitch holder or scrap yarn
  • 1 yard of trim (for an optional drawstring). I used Purl Soho's green Neon Lacing for the Gray Popover and our Medium Braided Linen Cord for the Ecru Popover. 

The Pattern


5 stitches = 1 inch garter stitch


To fit most 12-18 month olds (2-4, 4-6 year olds)

Length from cast on to back of neck: 7 ¼ (8 ¼, 10 ¼) inches (adjustable)

Overall length from cast on to top of hood: 12 ¾ (14 ¾, 17 ¾) inches (adjustable)

Width across chest: 7 (8, 9) inches

Pattern Notes

Slip stitches as if to knit on the right side and as if to purl on the wrong side.

The Front


Cast on 36 (40, 44) stitches.

Row 1 (right side): Slip 1, k1, p1, k11 (13, 15), p1, k6, p1, k11 (13, 15), p1, k2.

Row 2: Slip 1, p1, k13 (15, 17), p6, k13 (15, 17), p2.

Repeat Rows 1 and 2 until piece measures 7 (8, 9) inches, or desired length, from the cast on edge.

The Neck

Row 1 (right side): Slip 1, k1, p1, k10 (13, 14), bind off in pattern the next 10 (8, 10) stitches, knit to the last 3 stitches, p1, k2. 26 (32, 34) total stitches; 13 (16, 17) for each shoulder.

Row 2: Slip 1, p1, knit to bound off stitches.

The Right Shoulder

Now working just the 13 (16, 17) stitches of the Right Shoulder...

Row 1 (right side): Bind off 4 (4, 4) stitches, knit to last 3 stitches, p1, k2. 9 (12, 13 ) stitches 

Row 2: Slip 1, p1, knit to bound off stitches.

Repeat Row 1 one more time. 5 (8, 9) stitches

For 2-4 and 4-6 Sizes ONLY

Next Row (wrong side): Slip 1, p1, knit to bound off stitches. 

Next Row: Bind off 3 (4) stitches, k1, p1, k2. 5 (5) stitches

For ALL Sizes

Row 1 (wrong side): Slip 1, p1, k3.

Row 2: K2, p1, k2. 

Repeat Rows 1 and 2 three (four, five) more times.

Repeat Row 1.

Cut yarn. Place stitches on a holder.

The Left Shoulder

With the wrong side facing you, join new yarn to the 13 (16, 17) stitches of the Left Shoulder. And now just working those stitches...

Row 1 (wrong side): Bind off 4 (4, 4) stitches, knit to last 2 stitches, p2. 9 (12, 13) stitches

Row 2: Slip 1, k1, p1, knit to bound off stitches.

Repeat Row 1 one more time. 5 (8, 9) stitches. 

For 2-4 and 4-6 Sizes ONLY 

Next Row (right side): Slip 1, k1, p1, knit to end.  

Next Row: Bind off 3 (4) stitches, k2, p2. 5 (5) stitches

For ALL Sizes

Row 1 (right side): Slip 1, k1, p1, k2. 

Row 2: K3, p2.

Repeat Rows 1 and 2 two (three, four) more times.

Repeat Row 1.

Next Row (wrong side): Cable cast on 26 (30, 34) stitches, working across newly cast on stitches, k10 (12, 14), p6, knit to last 2 stitches, p2. 31 (35, 39) stitches; 5 (5, 5) stitches still on hold for the Right Shoulder

Next Row: Slip 1, k1, p1, k11 (13, 15), p1, k6, p1, knit across rest of stitches, then work across 5 stitches on holder, k2, p1, k2. 36 (40, 44) stitches 

The Back

Row 1 (wrong side): Slip 1, p1, k13 (15, 17), p6, k13 (15, 17), p2.

Row 2: Slip 1, k1, p1, k11 (13, 15), p1, k6, p1, k11 (13, 15), p1, k2.

Repeat Rows 1 and 2 until The Back measures 7 1/4 (8 ¼, 9 1/4) inches or desired length.

Repeat Row 1.

Bind off in pattern.

The Hood

Joining new yarn, start to the left (as you look at the sweater) of the center stockinette stripe and... 

...pick up 60 (68, 76) stitches all the way around the neck to the right side of the center stockinette stripe.

Turn work.

Row 1 (wrong side): Cable cast on 3 stitches, purl those 3 stitches, k1, p6, k20 (24, 28), p6, k20 (24, 28), p6, k1. 63 (71, 79) stitches

Row 2: Cable cast on 3 stitches, knit those 3 stitches, p1, k6, p1, k18 (22, 26), p1, k6, p1, k18 (22, 26), p1, k6, p1, k3. 66 (74, 82) stitches

Row 3: P3, k1, p6, k20 (24, 28), p6, k20 (24, 28), p6, k1, p3.

Row 4: K3, p1, k6, p1, k18 (22, 26), p1, k6, p1, k18 (22, 26), p1, k6, p1, k3.

Repeat Rows 3 and 4 until piece measures 5 1/2 (6 ½, 7) inches, or desired length, from the back of the Neck. 

Repeat Row 3. 

Decrease Row (right side): K3, p1, k6, p1, k18 (22, 26), p1, ssk, k2, k2tog, p1, k18 (22, 26), p1, k6, p1, k3. 64 (72, 80) stitches

Next Row: P3, k1, p6, k20 (24, 28), p4, k20 (24, 28), p6, k1, p3.

Decrease Row: K3, p1, k6, p1, k18 (22, 26), p1, ssk, k2tog, p1, k18 (22, 26), p1, k6, p1, k3. 62 (70, 78) stitches

Next Row: P3, k1, p6, k1, p18 (22, 26), k1, p2, k1, p18 (22, 26), k1, p6, k1, p3. Note: You are no longer working the sides of the hood in garter, but rather in stockinette to prepare for seaming the top of the hood! 

Cut yarn leaving a generous tail of about 20 inches. 

Seam the Top of the Hood

Divide the stitches in two, sliding half the stitches to each end of the circular needle. Use the Kitchener Stitch to graft the two sides of the hood together.  

Finish the Hood

Using the column of purl stitches as a guide, fold the three edge stitches of the hood to the inside of the hood. Using a long piece of yarn, whip stitch the edge down. This will create a nicely finished edge as well as a channel for the optional drawstring. If you are putting in a drawstring, attach a safety pin to the trim to help you work it through the channel.

Weave in your ends and pop it over the head of your little loved one!!

Reader Comments (23)

I think this is super cute, and I hope I can find someone to make it for my son!
September 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAnna
Lovely! I am coming to NY in a few weeks and am sooo looking forward to shopping yarn at your shop. I might very well get myself this project as my baby can definitely use this one here in Oslo. You do however have so many good ideas and such wonderful yarns and fabrics!
September 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKrisha
Would you say this is an easy project? How long did it take you to make it? I have triplets so I was hoping for a project I could complete pretty quickly.

September 16, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterlinda
Wonderful idea... I really like it and I will try to do it for my son (18 months old). Even for mz, I really would like to have it...
September 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAusra
Hi Linda,
YES! Great question. This is a pretty easy project. The front and back knit up super quickly and once you get the hang of the pattern, it's great to do while watching TV or listening to a book on tape! The hood is quite simple as well. The potentially trickiest parts are the cable cast on, picking up stitches for the hood, and Kitchner Stitch to seam the top of the hood. Also, we are here to help with any questions! You'll breeze through these!
September 17, 2012 | Registered Commenterpurl bee
Any chance this can be adapted into a crochet pattern? I simply adore it and think it would be perfect for my twins since we live in Texas and winters aren't harsh and don't necessarily require too many layers. But alas, I don't knit :(

Regardless It is an ingenious concept and ├╝ber cute!!!!
September 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLaurenH
Hi LaurenH-

There are currently no plans to adapt this to a crochet pattern but we'll keep it under consideration going forward.

Thank so much for writing in and for your kind words about the pattern!

September 17, 2012 | Registered Commenterpurl bee
In Row 2 of The Back are you missing a p1 before the final k2?
September 18, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAlissa
Yes. I am.
Just fixed it.
Thank you.
September 18, 2012 | Registered Commenterpurl bee
Love this pattern! It's quick and easy and I've just completed two for a friend who had twins! Thanks for all the great patterns, Purlbee!
October 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAnnelise
I LOVE this pattern!

I am working on the right shoulder now. I thought I was supposed to be working on the side that will be the right when the child wears it, but as I read a couple of rows ahead I wonder if it is actually my right side as I look at it. Can you clarify for me, please?

October 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMaureen
Hi Maureen.
Glad you like the pattern! You are correct in thinking that the Right Shoulder refers to when it is on the child. Thanks for writing in. Let me know if you have any more questions!
October 17, 2012 | Registered Commenterpurl bee
Thank's for this lovely pattern. I made a french translation for a friend, let me know if you want it, it would be a pleasure to send you the pdf.
October 20, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSarah Shantti

A friend made one for me! Here is my post about it!
November 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAnna
Cutest model ever!
February 1, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAmy
I love this idea... shorter in front might be better for the busy kiddos who might be crawling. I guess just short enought not to trip them selves up..
However, this has given me a new thought... for a neck and shoulder warmer I have been trying to come up with- for an adult friend of mine. Think "tea cozy" for a human with a place for a head to poke out. The idea you have for the "pop-over" to re work for a high neck ( rather than hood) and a bit more over the shoulders for an adult who when sitting gets cold and stiff neck and shoulders and tops of arms... This problably makes no sences to you what so ever.. (Like I tell the Mr. can't you see what I am thinking?)
None-the-less this changes my line of thought for this adult need... Thanks so much for your creativity and amazing ideas!! brillant! I love this place, thanks.
March 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommentercynD
This should be absolutely great. Pop this on them, throw them in the car seat and you can even get the door closed before they have pulled it off. It's perfect!
March 12, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJan
Just made this adorable (I call) Little Red Riding Hoodie. Made it in bright red, ww yarn. It came out just right and my 14 mo old grand-daughter will where it yet this year. We live in Michigan and no doubt it will get cold enough before the end of April. I need to perfect the pick up stitches process so there aren't holes in my work, but I'm pretty pleased with the outcome. Thanks!
March 28, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersue
Hi folks. Love this pattern. How can this be adapted for all ages (babies to adults)? I thinks this is great for cold weather for children waiting at bus stops (or adults) etc. It eliminates the need for a scarf and a hat. It also dos not allow cold air to get into a gap that you may have between scarf and hat. Thanks, Pat
May 6, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterPat
Hi Pat.
Thank you so much for the kind words regarding this pattern.

Unfortunately, right now we do not have the resources to size this pattern up. I would love to develop an adult Popover this Fall sometime. So do please stay tuned.
May 8, 2013 | Registered Commenterpurl bee
This is a fantastic idea!! I will be making these!!!! Now if we attach mittens there would never be the hunt for Red October when you want to leave the house. LOL! I love this website! Thank you for the time you put into it!!
January 13, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterDanny and Hanks
Love the pattern. Want to print it out but without all of the pictures(one of the baby wearing it and one of the work itself.will do) Can I get the pattern? I don`t "tweet",facebook or other..I just EMail. Thank you. The baby is adorable. Is she yours?
March 20, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterMairmie
HI Mairmie-

Unfortunately we don't have this pattern available in another format. To print this pattern without the photos you can copy and paste just the text into a Word or Text document and print for there.

Thanks for getting in touch!

March 20, 2014 | Registered Commenterpurl bee

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