blocking part 1: how to flat-block a wool hat

remember these gifts from a little while ago?

red wool

one of the skeins is now a wool hat. it was a gift for someone who likes their hats extra warm, and their wool extra woolly. check and check.

i blocked the hat after i finished knitting it. if you haven’t heard of blocking before, this is basically how i did it.

  • slipped the hat into a sink full of warm water.
  • gently pressed the hat into the water to get it completely soaked.
  • lifted it out of the water and pressed the water out against the side of the sink. note: a clever reader mentioned they use a salad spinner to spin small knit items like socks. if you missed our chat about salad spinners, read this post. something for everyone here ;-)
  • laid it flat in a towel and rolled the towel to squeeze out the extra water
  • unrolled, placed hat on a dry towel and shaped it
  • let it dry completely, for about one day

what does blocking do? in this project, the result isn’t as noticeable as it is in some larger projects, like shawls, sweaters or blankets. but basically, blocking an item makes the stitches appear more even. and also, blocking a wool garment helps to keep its shape once dried.

you’ll notice the hat was quite pointy when it came off the needles, prior to blocking:

knit hat to be blocked

while it was wet, i pulled the hat into a more rounded shape at the top and allowed it to dry  flat on the towel. after blocking, the stitches look more even and aligned as well…

wool hat knit and blocked

next time, i’ll share how i blocked a hat that was shaped so it doesn’t lie flat.

© imadeitso, 2011. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to ana at with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.
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24 Responses to blocking part 1: how to flat-block a wool hat

  1. Alyssa says:

    Looks great Ana! Blocking’s a wonder, isn’t it? And it’s important enought that the report for the Master Knitter Prog. Lvl I is on blocking, actually.

    Another thing that works for beanie type hats – a balloon or small children’s ball. :)

  2. Dvora says:

    I love how the hat came out. The yarn knit up beautifully!

  3. Debbie says:

    Ana~Your hands never rest. Your always creating. Your blog is beautiful. Connecticut is ALL about snow. I’m dreaming of spring. xo

  4. 'Joyce' says:

    Ana, wow, this hat is lovely. Your work is super neat. Blocking makes a huge difference. Thanks for sharing.

  5. Beth says:

    The hat looks great. I knitted a hat for hubby but didn’t block it. He’s not going to wear it in public, only in the shop where he restores vintage BMW bikes. Do you think it’ll be possible to block it in the spring when it gets too warm to wear it?

    • imadeitso says:

      i don’t think it’ll be too late. it may block itself a bit (with wet weather, sweat) before then :)
      any other knitters out there want to chime in with their thoughts?

  6. Pingback: blocking part 2: shaping a knit hat | i made it so.

  7. Lindsay Ann says:

    OoooOoOoo, I can’t wait! I’ve never actually blocked something!!

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  17. Julie says:

    I love this hat! Are you free to share the pattern? Thanks!

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