28 Free Knit Hat and Beanie Patterns

You’ll love this pattern collection of 28+ easy knit hat patterns. From beanies to slouch hats, these patterns are the perfect way to keep warm this winter. We’ve searched everywhere for modern knit hats that anyone would love to wear.

However, before we get to the list, we want to outline some basic principles of hat knitting for those that may be closer to the beginner skill level.

Beginner Knit Stitches & Methods

Hats or beanies are perfect projects for beginner knitters to take on. Knitted hat patterns usually take only a couple of hours, and only a skein or two of yarn (sometimes even less!).

If you’ve ever wondered how to knit a beanie for beginners, you’ve come to the right place.

To get you started, we go over some of the more common techniques used when knitting a hat.

Casting On

All knitting starts with casting on. Doing so creates loops of yarn on the knitting needle, which will become the first row of stitches for your hat.

While there are a few casting methods, the single cast on and longtail cast on methods are the first ones I’d recommend learning, but we will only focus on the single cast on method here:

  1. First, we need to make a slip knot. Start by making a loop with the yarn.
  2. Bring the yarn through the loop, creating another loop with a knot at the end.
  3. Next, we cast on. Slide the slip knot onto the needle, and pull the yarn to tighten the knot.
  4. Wrap the working yarn (the end connected to the ball of yarn) around your thumb, so you have a loop around your thumb.
  5. Bring the needle under and up through the loop around your thumb.
  6. Remove your thumb from the loop and pull the yarn.
  7. Continue from step 4 until you have the desired number of stitches casted on your needle.

Knit Stitch

Once you’ve learned how to cast on, the next step is to learn your first knit stitch.

The knit stitch is another basic knitting technique that you’ll need to know to make many of the knit patterns found on this page. In fact, this basic stitch is the foundation of knitting. 

I found that it is easiest to learn the knit stitch with circular needles, so you don’t end up losing one. A knit stitch worked back and forth is called a garter stitch, which is what I used to create this beginner knit blanket pattern.

To provide a visual, we’ve found this wonderful Knit Stitch video tutorial by Sheep & Stitch.

Knit Hat Sizes

About half of the free knit hat patterns we listed below come with multiple sizes. These are most commonly listed as small, medium or large sizes. However, with some ingenuity and a little measuring, it is actually pretty easy to resize a hat.

Hat sizes based on the circumference of the wearer’s head. To get this measurement, take the tape measure and wrap it around the person’s head at the forehead level. This measurement is called the “head circumference”, and will correspond to one of the 11 hat sizes in our resizing chart.

Tools & Supplies for Knit Hats

Obviously, you will need yarn to create a knit hat. The most common yarn weights using in knitted hats are medium/aran/worsted and bulky/chunky. The lighter the yarn weight, the tighter the knit stitching will be, which is usually what a knit hat is known for.

Natural yarn such as wool or alpaca is most commonly used in knitted hats. By using natural yarn, you end up with a much more refined drape and the extra warmth needed to deal with cold winters.

Most knitted hat patterns will also call for either straight or circular needles (unless you are doing hand-knitting). Some may even require both! This will most often occur when a pattern has multiple parts, such as a main hat section plus ribbing.

I would recommend using wooden needles when starting out. They are easier to handle and are fairly inexpensive.

Free Hat Knitting Patterns

We’ve scoured the web and found some of our most favorite free knitted hat patterns. Scroll through them below and find your next knit project!

Easy Beginner Knit Hat

Use this easy and free knit hat pattern for complete beginners to make your first knit hat! You’ll love how fast this beanie works up since it uses Lion Brand Wool-Ease Thick + Quick yarn.

Designer: B Hooked

Knit Hat From a Rectangle

Learn how to knit one of the easiest knit hat patterns ever that was created with beginners in mind. This pattern has directions to make a hat in all yarn weights, such as #5 bulky weight yarn and #4 medium weight yarn, plus more.

Designer: Yay for Yarn

Northward Knit Hat

This hat features multiple chunky cables that run the length of it. This free knit pattern comes in four different size options and uses bulky weight yarn.

Designer: Tin Can Knits

Seed Stitch Chic Hat

The Knit Seed Stitch Chic hat uses one ball of Chic Sheep by Marly Bird yarn, works up in a few hours. This is a great beginner pattern.

Designer: Marley Bird

Bankhead Knit Beanie

This beautiful knit hat pattern comes in 5 different sizes from baby to Adult XL. It uses Peace Fleece worsted #4 weight yarn.

Designer: Susie Gourlay / Knit Natural

Double Pom Pom Hat

This double pom pom hat uses worsted weight yarn and size 7 double-pointed needles. This pattern is made easier if you have a pom pom maker.

Designer: Little Red Window

Twisted Rib Hat

The tiny braided ribs create a beautiful pattern on this semi-slouchy hat. While this pattern suggests Merino wool, any Light Worsted #3 weight yarn should work. This free pattern also comes with a free matching mittens design!

Designer: Purl Soho

Bashful Knit Lace Hat

This lacy knit hat pattern from Marley Bird uses DK or Light weight yarn and comes in three different sizes: small, medium and large.

Designer: Marley Bird

Classic Knit Hat

This classic hat is a basic piece suitable for anyone and is lovely in any color. The pattern is simple and quick and is perfect for beginners. This pattern suggests 100% wool Aran (medium weight) yarn.

Designer: Little Grey Heart

Rafa’s Knit Hat

This knit hat was designed for men who want just a simple beanie. Using medium weight yarn and a US 5 needle, this knit hat should come together very quickly. it comes in three different size options.

Designer: Joji Knits

Speargrass Knit Hat

The Speargrass knit hat uses a chevron pattern to get its unique look. This hat uses worsted weight yarn with a size 7 knitting needle. It comes in only one size, but it can easily be resized.

Designer: Susie Gourlay / Knit Natural

#HatNotHate Knit Hat

The knit hat is one of a series to celebrate the #hatnothate initiative to stand up to bullying. We also participated with our own crocheted version of this hat!

Designer: Rebecca Kevelson for Clinton Hill

Little Cables Knit Hat

This hat features interspersed small cables throughout the pattern to create a wonderful texture. It uses any 8 ply/DK weight yarn with 4mm double pointed needles or circulars.

Designer: Knitting Box

Red Heart Hat, Scarf and Mitten Set

This easy pattern features a set of accessories that will all match. This set is made with Red Heart Comfort 3 weight yarn and 4.5mm (US 7) and 5.5mm (US 6) knitting needles.

Designer: Red Heart Design Team


Available in five sizes, this knit hat uses Aran weight 100% Merino yarn and two different knitting needles. This hat has a ribbed bottom and a slouchy cap.

Designer: Les Tricots de Dilia

Tier Cake Hat

This hat is knitted with bulky yarn, and is warm and comfortable to wear. The body of the hat is knitted sideways and can be adjusted to be any size.

Designer: ABC Knitting

Beginner Slouchy Knit Hat

This knit slouchy hat free pattern is made entirely of knits and purls, making it perfect for beginners and a quick knit for old hands. Written specifically for beginners, this pattern is for people looking to make their first knit hat.

Designer: Sheep & Stitch

Madelon Hat

The Madelon Hat is a classic ribbed design that is knit in the round and seamless. This knitted hat uses Super Bulky yarn and a 9mm needle.

Designer: Hannah Mann

Camel Seed Stitch Slouchy Hat

This free hat knitting pattern uses simple seed stitch knitting to create the interesting texture and simple 2×2 knit and purl ribbing for the cuff.

Designer: Cathy Payson for Red Heart

Northern Lights Knit Hat

This eye-catching cable design and gradient color of this knitted hat make it stand out from all the others. It uses US4 and US7 size circular knitting needles and Alize Baby Wool #4 weight yarn.

Designer: Crazy Hands

Seasonal Stocking Knit Cap

This easy knit cap is 20″ wide, which falls into the child head size. It uses 2 balls of Lion Brand Wool-Ease yarn and a US8 (5mm) knitting needle.

Designer: Lion Brand

Warm Quick Hat

This knit hat uses a 16″ circular needle in US 11 (8.0mm). It was thrown together quickly, but looks great!

Designer: Lazy Daisy Knits by Amanda

Swirled Ski Cap

This hat has a unique swirl pattern that is created by working it in the flat in stripes, which is then decreased at opposite sides to create a parallelogram. Once stitched together, the swirls pop out.

Designer: Craft Yarn Council via Caps for Kids

Chunky Knit Messy Bun Hat

Premier Yarn Serenity Chunky Heathers & Solids or any super bulky yarn and a 9mm (US13) needle create this messy bun knit hat. It can be worked flat and seamed, or with a circular needle to avoid seaming all together.

Designer: Marni Reecer

Super Slouch Hat

Knit in the back-and-forth method, this airy slouchy knit hat is perfect for fall days. It is created with DK/Light Worsted yarn and both US4 and US7 needles.

Designer: Balls to the Walls Knit

Mossing Around Knit Hat

The Mossing Around knit hat uses both the double moss stitch and garter stitch to create this beautiful hat. It is knitted with Aran yarn and straight 4.5mm needles.

Designer: Drops Design

A Tweed Hat

Knit with the stockinette stitch with Berroco Blackstone Tweed Chunky yarn, this knit hat is a fan favorite. Designed to fit an adult man’s head, it can easily be resized.

Designer: Sweet Fiber Yarns

The Shilling Hat

Knit with worsted weight yarn, this knit hat comes with a detailed pattern and chart to get any beginner started perfectly.

Designer: Earth Morning Knits

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