How to Decrease When Knitting: Get Small and Mighty with These Tips

HomeTechniquesHow to Decrease When Knitting: Get Small and Mighty with These Tips

Decreasing when knitting a hat is important for creating the right shape. To do this, evenly distribute knit two together (k2tog) stitches throughout a row, starting with a larger number of stitches and gradually decreasing until you reach the desired size. This will help create a snug fit at the crown of the hat.

Are you ready to learn how to decrease when knitting a hat?

Knitting hats is a great way to show your creativity and make something unique. To get started, you’ll need to understand the basics of knitting and prepare your supplies.

Then, calculate the number of stitches needed for the project before beginning with decreasing with k2tog (knit two together).

Finally, evenly distribute k2tog stitches throughout the row and finish up your hat! With these tips and tricks, you’ll be able to create beautiful hats in no time!

Understand the Basics of Knitting

To get started with knitting, you need to understand the basics – like how to k2tog and spread out your stitches across a row.

Reading patterns is essential in knowing what kind of stitch to use when decreasing. Gauge swatches will also help you determine how tight or loose you want your hat to be.

When it comes time to decrease, you can evenly distribute knit two together (k2tog) stitches throughout a row. This will ensure that your decreases are uniform and that they appear seamless when finished.

Paying attention to detail while working on gauge swatches and reading patterns are key in mastering this skill – practice makes perfect!

Once you feel confident in understanding the basics, it’s time to prepare your supplies for starting the project.

Prepare Your Supplies

Before you can start crafting your beautiful hat, you’ll need to gather your supplies – and this is the first step!

The two most important supplies for knitting a hat are needles and yarn. When choosing needles, consider both their size and material. A metal needle will be more lightweight than a wooden one, but it won’t have as much grip on the stitches. Your choice of yarn will depend on what kind of look you’re going for – if you want a warm, light-weight hat try using wool or acrylic yarns; if you’re looking for something with more drape choose cotton or linen.

Once you’ve selected your materials, it’s time to measure out how much yarn and thread to use. Start by measuring the circumference of your head – this will be the width of your hat once finished. Then, decide on the length of your hat based on where it should sit on your head. Knowing these measurements will help you determine how many stitches are needed when casting on (the initial number of loops that form the base of your project).

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To calculate how much yarn is required for a specific project, wrap the skein around an object that corresponds to the stitch gauge listed in the pattern instructions (for example: four inches equals 16 stitches). Counting each loop gives you an idea of how far one skein will go – usually between 140 and 200 yards depending on its weight and thickness. This information helps when selecting which type and amount of yarn to purchase for a particular project.

Now that everything has been prepared, it’s time to get started!

Casting on allows us to secure our stitches onto our needles so we can begin knitting our hats right away.

Calculate the Number of Stitches Needed

Once the circumference and length of your desired hat have been determined, the next step is to calculate the number of stitches necessary for its completion.

To achieve this, you must first analyze the pattern that you’re following and adjust your tension accordingly. You’ll also need to consider how many stitches make up one inch in stockinette stitch.

To do this, cast on a few extra stitches when beginning the project so that you can measure them after knitting a few rows. Once you know how many stitches there are per inch, it’ll be easier to determine how many more or less stitches you need for your hat’s circumference.

For example, if your pattern calls for a 20-inch circumference and you find that there are 8 stitches per inch in stockinette stitch, then you would multiply 8 by 20 (8 x 20 = 160) to get the total number of stitches needed for your hat: 160.

Now that you’ve figured out how many stitches should be cast on initially, it’s time to begin decreasing with k2tog throughout each row until the desired length is reached.

This will create an even shape that tapers toward the top of the hat so it’ll fit snugly onto someone’s head. Keep in mind that depending on which type of decreases and where they’re placed within each row can affect both the shape and size of your finished product!

To help ensure success with this stage, take some time to familiarize yourself with different types of decreases such as knit 2 together (k2tog), slip 1 knit 1 pass slipped stitch over (ssp) or slip 2 knit 1 pass 2 slipped sts over (ssp2), among others – all while keeping track of where they should be placed within each row.

With practice and patience, soon enough you’ll master these techniques!

Begin Decreasing with K2tog

Mastering k2tog decreases is key to creating a perfectly-fitting hat! To achieve this, you must first understand counting stitches and knitting needles.

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To begin decreasing with k2tog, you need to use the same number of stitches as in the previous round. Then, you will use your needle to knit two stitches together for each decrease throughout the round. This can be done by taking one stitch at a time from left needle to right and knitting them together on the right needle. After completing each decrease in this manner, you will have one less stitch than before – resulting in a decrease of one stitch per round.

The next step is to evenly distribute these decreases across the entire row. This means that if there are 10 decreases required for that specific round, then they should all be spread out evenly so that every 10th stitch is decreased with k2tog.

It can be helpful to place markers between each set of 10 stitches so that it’s easier to keep track of them when decreasing. Additionally, keeping count of how many times you k2tog can help ensure that you don’t miss any decreases or accidentally add any extra ones in!

Once all the necessary decreases have been made and distributed properly across the row, it’s important to check your work before continuing on with more rounds. Make sure that all of your k2tog decreases were done correctly and are evenly spaced out – otherwise, your hat won’t turn out correctly!

If everything looks good then it’s time to move onto the subsequent section about ‘evenly distributing k2tog stitches’. With proper practice and patience anyone can master using this technique for creating beautiful hats!

Evenly Distribute K2tog Stitches

After k2tog-ing your way through the previous round, it’s time to make sure those decreases are evenly spaced out. Depending on how much you’re decreasing, there are a few different methods you can use.

If you’re only doing two or four stitches, try alternating them with one purl stitch in between each decrease for a nice textured pattern. If you’re decreasing more than that, consider using the yarn over method instead of k2tog – this works better with some yarn types and offers an alternative look.

Once you’ve chosen your preferred method of evenly spacing out decreases, it’s time to actually do it! When knitting in the round, follow your chart as best as possible; if there is no chart available then count every stitch carefully and keep track of where each decrease should go.

With a bit of practice, this will become second nature and soon enough you’ll be able to easily identify when to work a decrease without even counting! To ensure all the decreases line up nicely at the end of each round and create smooth curves around the hat, make sure all decreases are worked in exactly the same place for each row/round until they have been completed – don’t skip any rounds or increase/decrease stitches too quickly or unevenly as this could result in an unintended shape for your hat.

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It can take some patience but with careful attention and dedication to detail, you’ll soon be able to confidently distribute decreases throughout your hat project. Once all decreases have been made properly and evenly distributed across each row/round it’s time to move on to finishing off the hat – something we’ll cover in our next section!

Finish the Hat

Now that you’ve done the hard work of evenly distributing k2tog stitches, it’s time to finish off your project with a flourish!

To complete the hat, you need to decrease gradually until there is only one stitch remaining. You can do this by continuing to evenly distribute knit two together (K2TOG) stitches throughout each row.

As you get close to the end, you will want to bind off the last few stitches. This will create a nice finished edge and secure any open loops. When binding off, use a larger needle than what you used for knitting the hat.

This will help keep your tail from becoming too tight or difficult to weave in later on. Additionally, make sure not to pull too tightly when binding off – this can cause your edge to curl or become distorted.

Each stitch should remain loose so that all of them appear even when viewed from both sides of the fabric. Once all of your stitches are bound off, snip any excess yarn and thread it through your last loop with a tapestry needle and knot securely at the back of the work piece.

Congratulations – you’ve successfully completed a beautiful handmade hat! Now that everything is finished up, admire your handiwork and wear it proudly!

With practice and patience, soon enough you’ll be knitting hats like an expert in no time!


You did it! You’ve successfully decreased your stitches and finished your hat.

You can now proudly show off the beautiful piece of knitting you created. With a bit of practice, you’ll soon be an expert in decreasing when knitting a hat.

What’s more, imagine the surprise when your friends find out that not only did you make such a stunning hat but you also designed it yourself!

Enjoy wearing or gifting this creation knowing that with each stitch, you knitted something truly special.

Katherine Pearce
Katherine Pearce
Katherine Pearce is a knitting enthusiast and the founder of With a deep passion for the craft, Katherine aims to make knitting accessible to everyone, regardless of their skill level. Through, she provides online tutorials and resources to help others discover the joys of knitting and develop their skills.

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