Knit Hat Sew-Along / Patterns Sew-Along / Tutorials

Sew a Knit Hat Beanie from a Recycled Sweater

Did you know that you can turn old sweaters into really cool knit hats? In this tutorial, I’ll show you how to sew a knit hat beanie using a sweater. And I can pretty much guarantee that everyone will think you knitted the hat! This is a great upcycle/refashion project that can be done in a myriad of ways.

I personally love turning old cable knitted menswear sweaters into hats, and cotton sweaters work just as well as wool in case you are sensitive to itching. In fact, the sweater I’m using in this tutorial is made of cotton and is so soft to wear.

To sew a knit hat beanie using a sweater you’ll need:

  • A knit hat sewing pattern. I’m using my Brisa Beanie Pattern in this tutorial, and you can also use Ullvi for a more slouchy fit.
  • A sweater, preferably with waist ribbing, that has a bodice that is wide enough for the pattern.

I’m making a watch cap style beanie with a folded rim in this tutorial. But you can of course also use this method to sew a knit hat without the fold, just sew the side seam all the way instead of stopping just above the waistband ribbing.

How to sew a knit hat beanie using a sweater sewing tutorial

1. Cut out the knit hat pattern piece

Place the lower edge of the pattern at the end of the sweater and cut the piece out as a single layer

How to sew a knit hat beanie using a sweater sewing tutorial

2. Stitch the beanie

Follow the instructions, with one important exception; stop just before the waist ribbing,  as you will fold up the ribbing and want to avoid any visible seams.

How to sew a knit hat beanie using a sweater sewing tutorial

3. Turn the hat

The right sides are now facing outwards. Mark with a pin where the seam should start. It’s best to let it start slightly above the ribbing, the fold will hide the seam.

How to sew a knit hat beanie using a sweater sewing tutorial

4. Stitch the side seam on the waist ribbing

I like to use a sewing machine here for more control. But a serger also works.

How to sew a knit hat beanie using a sweater sewing tutorial

How to sew a knit hat beanie

5. Fold up the ribbing to create a rim on the beanie

This was super easy, right? This method is in fact very similar to how RTW single layer beanies are made in the garment industry. They place the patterns on rectangles with cast off edges and then sew the hats together as I describe in the instructions for my knit hat sewing patterns.

How to sew a knit hat beanie

P.S. You don’t need to use a sweater with ribbing. Above is a version of the Ullvi knit hat pattern that I made using a sweater without ribbing at the waist.


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    November 30, 2018 at 9:05 pm

    […] I like to line my hats with either cotton or wool knit or fleece (for extra warmth). In this tutorial, I’m using a cotton rib knit (and the outer fabric is from an old sweater!) […]

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    December 20, 2018 at 4:12 pm

    […] The finished pom-pom attached to a Brisa Beanie made from a recycled sweater (check out my tutorial for how to make a knit hat using a sweater) […]


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