Arts & Entertainment Editor
Welcome to a new little series called COVID Crafts! The pandemic resulted in a lot of free time and boredom, so, naturally, many people picked up different hobbies to fill that space. Over a year ago now, I picked up a crochet hook, some yarn, and attempted to make myself a bee. Let me tell you, it took some time to figure out what the heck I was doing. After countless YouTube videos in the span of a few days, I managed to crochet a bee big enough to fit in my hand. I was extremely proud of myself, and thus began one of my favorite hobbies I’ve picked up to date.
Recently, I’ve been obsessed with making hats. I saw someone on TikTok who has been making beanies, and I thought to myself, “I need to learn how to make these.” So, I did. I found a tutorial by youtuber it’s erin b, found some yarn, and got to work! As it turns out, beanies are incredibly simple to make — you basically just make a long rectangle and crochet the ends together. For this tutorial, I’ll be showing you how to make a two-tone beanie!
What You’ll Need:
- a 5mm crochet hook
- two different colors of yarn (I like using Impeccable Solid Yarn by Loops & Threads)
- a darning needle
- a ruler
- a pair of scissors
- Firstly, you’ll want to create a slip knot with one of the yarns you have. A slip knot is very common for crochet projects to start off with, and it’s something you’ll be using very often if you continue to crochet. The way I like to create the knot is through the ‘X method.’ You take the tail end of your yarn and wrap it around your index and middle finger to create an X. Then, you take the top string of yarn and push it through the bottom loop. You’ll pull the yarn, making sure you hold onto the tail and working ends of the yarn so you don’t lose your loop. Pull through until it’s tight, and voila! You should have your slip knot! You’ll place your crochet hook into the loop you’ve created, and then you can begin crocheting. (TIP: If you’re a visual learner like me, I recommend you check out Crochet Guru’s YouTube channel. She has tons of videos on basic stitches, including how to create a slip knot. Her video has three different methods; the one I mentioned starts at timestamp 1:20 in the linked video!)
- Once you have your slip knot, you’re going to want to create a chain that is 11 inches long. Chains are often the foundation of crochet projects, as they give a place for the stitches that go on top of it! To create a chain, you start with your hook in the slip knot. Then, you wrap the yarn around the hook so that the working end (the end coming out of your yarn ball) is towards you. Once you have that, hook your yarn through the slip knot. Congratulations! You’ve just chained one. As I said earlier, you’ll continue to chain until you’ve reached 11 inches. (TIP: If you’re having a hard time, HappyBerry Crochet has a great beginner tutorial on how to create a chain.)
- After you’ve made your chain, you’ll want to add two more chains so that it stays 11 inches as you work your way up. Then, yarn over so that you have two loops on your hook. With those two loops, you’ll insert your hook into the second chain from your hook. Pull the yarn through the chain so you have three loops. Yarn over, and then pull through all 3 loops to create a half-double crochet! You’ll be doing one half-double crochet all the way down the chain. Once you finish placing a half-double crochet in the last chain, chain 1 on top of that and turn your row. (TIP: Crochet Guru has a tutorial on how to create a half-double crochet if you’re having trouble!)
- Next up, you’ll be doing half-double crochets all the way down the row, but you’ll only be placing them in the back loop. When you look at your row from the top-down, you’ll see that your half-double crochet creates a little ‘V’ shape. You’ll only be inserting your hook in the back loop of this shape, and you’ll be doing that for the whole pattern. Each row repeats this pattern. Half-double crochet all the way down the row, chain one, turn your work, and repeat until you reach 11 inches with that color. (TIP: Knitiversity has a great video on how to do a half-double crochet in the back loop, if the wording is a little confusing.)
- Okay! You’ve reached 11inches with one color! Now what? At this point, you get to change colors. You may be asking, “How do I do that?” The answer is quite simple. This all takes place in the last stitch of the row. Once you’ve pulled your hook through the back loop — there should be three loops on your hook — you’re going to take the tail end of your next color, fold it over to make a ‘U’ shape, and place it on your hook to pull through the three loops. After you do that, cut a four to five-inch tail of the first color; for now, you’re no longer working with that color. Then — back to the second color — you’re just going to be doing the same thing that you did with the previous color: chain one, turn your work, and half-double crochet down each row until you get 11 inches in that color. Your work should be 11 inches by 22 inches in total. (TIP: Keep your hook in; you still have to connect the two sides)
- Now comes the fun part — connecting the two sides! You’re going to fold your rectangle in half so that the two short ends (the 11 inches) meet. With your hook still in the work, you’re going to slip stitch all the way down. A slip stitch is when you just insert your hook into the stitch, pull the yarn through the stitch, and then pull the yarn through the loop. (HELP: Crochet Guru is back at it again with another super helpful tutorial. In case you’re having trouble, she has a video on how to crochet a slip stitch.)
- Once you’re done stitching the two sides together, chain one and then pull the yarn through. This should create a little knot at the end of your stitches. You’re going to want a fairly long tail in order to stitch the top of your beanie closed (I usually aim for 8 to 12 inches). Once you cut your tail, you can go ahead and weave in the three shorter tails you should have hanging. To weave, you just take your darning needle, place the tail of the yarn through, and blend it into the stitches. Your goal is to make it look as if they were never even there. Remember: you’re not doing this with the super long tail, only the short ones. (TIP: Here’s Crochet Guru’s video on how to weave in loose ends).
- You’re almost done! You just have to stitch the top of your beanie closed. To do this, you’re going to weave your needle through the little gaps along the top. Once you come back around full circle, pull the yarn real tight to scrunch it together. When that’s done, just tie a few knots at the top to secure it, weave in that tail, and you’re finished! Just create a fold on the opposite end and place it on your head. (TIP: it’s erin b’s tutorial shows how this is done really well in case you have trouble!)
Making a beanie is a super easy beginner project; I’ve made four of them by now. They usually don’t take me longer than a day and make wonderful gifts. Once you have the method down, you can experiment by making striped beanies! You just have to change out the color every two rows. Happy crocheting!
Featured Image Courtesy of Kim Tsuyuki/Quaker Campus