I couldn't resist making a couple more, from leftover white yarn.
I made these half dozen little caps for this project, one of my favorites. I've mentioned this a lot recently, but if you're new here, Save the Children has once again begun a campaign to ask our President-elect and Congress to appropriate more funds to help new mothers and their premature babies, in third world countries. We all know how important it is to keep a healthy, full-term newborn's head warm during the first few weeks of life. Imagine how important it is for a premature baby.
You can download a kit to participate in this program by simply clicking on the Knit One Save One button above. The kit includes everything you need, including patterns for knit or crochet caps, a tag to put on your cap which will show your name and what state you live in, and a form you can use to write a short note to our new President.
You only need to make one cap to participate. The deadline is December 31st. Your letter will go to Save the Children and they will deliver it to the White House. Two years ago, 22,000 Americans participated. I'm sure numbers like that get some attention, even in Washington D.C. The caps went to newborns in Bangladesh, Malawi and Vietnam.
Save the Children would prefer you use one of their patterns. The only reason is because their patterns are the correct size for a premature baby. I made a cap using one of their crochet patterns.
I like mine better. I mean, it's a cute cap, but I still like my little stocking cap better.
I can't teach you to crochet, here on my blog. But I can tell you, the pattern I use for this stocking cap is very, very easy - definitely a beginner pattern. It uses only two stitches - the chain stitch, and the single crochet stitch.
So here are the instructions for making this cap in preemie size:
I used worsted weight yarn and a size H crochet hook. As with any pattern, you may have to adjust this one, depending on the yarn you use and the size hook you use. But if you use worsted weight yarn and an "H" hook,
For the first row, work a single crochet in the second chain from the hook and in each remaining chain. (30 single crochet stitches) Chain 1 and turn.
The entire cap is done in single crochet worked through the back loop of each stitch.
On row 2, work a single crochet in each stitch of the previous row to within 4 stitches of the end. (26 single crochet stitches) Do not work any stitches in these last 4 stitches. Chain 1 and turn.
For row 3, single crochet to the end of the row. (26 single crochet stitches) Remember, you are working through the back loop of each stitch. (This creates the "ribs" in this cap.) Chain 1 and turn.
For row 4, work a single crochet in all stitches, including the skipped 4 stitches on row 2. (30 single crochet stitches) Chain 1 and turn.
For row 5, single crochet to end of row. (30 single crochet stitches) Chain 1 and turn.
Repeat rows 2 through 5 until cap is approximately nine inches wide. When the desired width is reached, end with the completion of row 3 and sew the side edges together.
You can add a pom pom or tassel if you wish.
Here's what you need to know, in order for your cap to fit a preemie:
So adjust your beginning number of chain stitches, if you need to, so that it's seven inches long, and continue working the rows until it measures nine inches wide.
It's that simple.
Here are a few photo notes on how to assemble the little cap. I apologize for the inconsistency of these photos - big black clouds were rushing across our sky and my light kept changing. But you can see more detail if you click on the photos.
When I make my beginning chain, I leave a very long tail of yarn at the beginning. When you end your cap with row 3, you'll be at the other end of the cap, and I leave another very long tail. Thread that tail through a large-eyed darning or tapestry needle and simply sew the two edges together. I'd call this whip-stitching it together.
Both your "tails" will now be at the same place, the top of the cap. I tie them together in a tight knot.
Now thread both tails through the tapestry needle and make a running stitch all around the opening at the top of the cap.
Pull the yarn up very tightly, to completely close the hole, and again, I tie it in a very tight knot. I don't want this coming loose the first time the cap is washed.
Push the needle through the center of the closed hole, to the right side of the cap, pulling the yarn straight through.
Turn your little cap right side out. Now the two "tails" are sticking out of the top of the cap. You don't have to, of course, but I like to add a tassel, so I cut several lengths (about 24) of yarn to make the tassel.
Simply lay those little lengths of yarn across the two tails and tie the tails into a very tight double knot.
Trim the tassel and tails.
Turn up the cuff of the cap. And there you are.
A cute, cute and very warm cap for a tiny premature baby. And this will be perfectly acceptable to Save the Children because it's the right size.
I originally posted my pattern for a simple stocking cap last February. It was quite easy to adapt it to a tiny size like this, but I've made this cap for my nieces and nephews and my own children, since 1982. I even made my father a stocking cap, in royal blue and bright orange - Bronco colors. LOL
Here's a cute pink cap I made for my seven month old granddaughter, Avery, using the basic pattern. I remember that I made the beginning chain stitch ten inches long. I measured her head and made the cap a couple of inches less wide than the circumference of her head. You want it to be snug but remember, it stretches.
Obviously, she's a lot bigger than a preemie, but her little cap fits perfectly and she'll wear this all this winter and maybe even next winter, because it stretches and the cuff is adjustable.
And if, after studying these instructions, you still have any questions or need help, short of my teaching you, via cyberspace, to crochet, please feel free to email me. My email link is in my profile.