Free baby knitting pattern.

Newborn Baby Hat to Knit – Free Knitting Pattern


(This post contains affiliate links.)

Looking for a quick, classic handmade baby shower gift?  Want an easy knitting pattern to donate to charity?  Look no further.

The following pattern is one I designed years ago, originally published on another website.  I have decided to add it here, as well, where I can update some of the information and give further suggestions for customization.

This teeny tiny newborn hat is made with soft acrylic yarn and size US 7 knitting needles. It is a great beginner’s baby knitting project because it is relatively easy but also requires the use of a few more complicated techniques that beginners should learn, such as decreasing stitches.

This pattern is written for flat needles, but it can easily be adapted to knitting in the round.



Approximately 18 stitches and 24 st st rows = 4 inches.

Abbreviations Used in This Pattern:

  • R – Row
  • K – Knit
  • P – Purl
  • tog – together
  • sts – stitches


  • Cast on 60 sts
  • R1-R10: (K1, P1) across for brim
  • R11: Knit
  • R12: Purl
  • Repeat rows 11 and 12 6 more times. (24 rows completed)
  • R25: (K4, K2 tog) across
  • R26: Purl
  • R 27: (K3, K2 tog) across
  • R 28: Purl
  • R29: (K2, K2 tog) across
  • R30: Purl
  • R31: (K1, K2 tog) across
  • R32: Purl
  • R33: (K2 tog) across

Instructions for Finishing

  • Cut the yarn, leaving a long tail.
  • Using the yarn needle, draw the yarn through the remaining stitches on the needle.
  • Pull tightly and secure the yarn.
  • Sew the back seam of the hat with the right sides facing.  This is called mattress stitch, which you can learn here.
  • Sew in the loose ends.

Variations on Newborn Baby Hat and Instructions for Larger Sizes

For a neat variation on the newborn hat, consider making the brim in a different color than the rest of the hat. To do so, simply change to a new color of yarn after row 10. Try making the cuff a contrasting color to the rest of the hat for a funky look, or simply make the cuff a neutral color, such as white or grey, and then make the rest of the hat in a more vibrant color.  Another option is to add a pom-pom to the top.

For a larger hat, use size 8 knitting needles. The number of cast on stitches may also be increased to fit a larger baby’s head. Keep in mind, however, that the number of stitches cast on are a multiple of 6. Likewise, if increasing the width of the hat, it may also be necessary to increase the length. If so, simply add a few additional rows of stockinette stitch after row 24 before the decreasing begins.

Donate this Hat to Charity

One of the coolest things about providing free patterns is seeing how they are used by others.  This pattern, in particular, has been adapted in numerous ways.  One Ravelry user, along with her knitting group, knit heaps of these hats to donate to hospitals.  That just makes me so happy!  I have donated finished products, as well, to the organization Bundles of Love here in Minnesota.  So, if you decide to knit some of these for a charity, be sure to let me know how it goes. 🙂

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7 thoughts on “Newborn Baby Hat to Knit – Free Knitting Pattern

  1. Thank you very much for making this pattern available! I was searching for a pattern that could be worked flat to make purple baby caps for the shaken baby initiative in the months of November and December. This one will be perfect and quick to make..

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Linda,

      Unfortunately, I don’t have a printer-friendly PDF for this. You should be able to copy and paste into a word document, or highlight the pattern and print the selected section.

      Hope that helps.



  2. Thanks for the pattern. We’re knitting hats and blankets for a local photographer who takes photos of babies who’ve died. It gives the babies something for the photo and the family can choose to keep the articles or bury the baby in them.


  3. Many thanks for sharing your pattern. Just what I’m looking for a group of school kids that I’m teaching to knit at the moment. They will enjoy making this for our local baby unit. Every hat counts so thanks again for the pattern.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi. Lovely pattern thankyou. I was just wondering how I could attach a pom pom to this beanie. Would I sew it on before or after sewing up the seam? Thanks


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