Sugar Cube Hat by Vikki Bird

Sugar Cube Hat

October 2020
DK (11 wpi) ?
22 stitches and 32 rows = 4 inches
in stocking stitch
US 5 - 3.75 mm
US 6 - 4.0 mm
49 - 273 yards (45 - 250 m)
Premmie (Newborn, 6 months, 12 months, Child/Teenager, Adult, Large Adult)
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2020 has been a strange old year: with a pandemic shutting all of us up in our homes, one thing I really missed was coffee-shop knitting. The Sugar Cube Knits set is a homage to this activity, featuring a simple textured stitch pattern, made up of knits and purls, that looks like stacked sugar cubes.

I like to have many hats for all eventualities: the Sugar Cube Hat is a good one for cooler days that haven’t yet turned to deep winter days. The hat is long enough to cover your ears, but not so large you can’t fit it under a hood. This hat is my go-to for the school run, or for just popping out to the shops; it also makes a good emergency hat – it’s small enough to slip into your bag so you know your head will never get cold!

The hat uses a beautiful tonal brown DK yarn, dyed specially by Blue Fern Yarns, to evoke the warm tones of brown sugar. The merino/bamboo blend really helps the stitches to pop.

The hat is worked in the round from the bottom up, starting with a deep ribbed cuff (which you can make double depth if you like your ears to be really cosy!), then the main body of the hat is worked, finishing with the crown decreases. You can add a pom-pom if you like – you can make it a detachable one so you can take it one and off depending on your mood.

The pattern is needle-neutral, so you can knit this hat on your choice of DPNs, short circulars or magic loop.

a: Hat circumference 27.5 (32, 36.5, 41, 45.5, 50, 54.5) cm 11 (12.75, 14.5, 16.25, 18.25, 20, 21.75) in
b: Hat depth from rim to crown (for folded-back brim, this is measured from the base of the brim once folded) 11 (12.5, 14.5, 16.5, 19, 21, 23.5) cm 4.25 (5, 6, 6.5, 7.5, 8.5, 9.5) in

Choose a size that is 0–5 cm (0–2 in) smaller than your head circumference, measured around your ears.

If you want a slouchier fit, follow the stitch count for your size, but go up a size for the lengths.


  • 22 sts and 32 rnds = 10 cm (4 in) in stocking stitch worked in the round on 4 mm (US 6) needles after wet blocking, or size needed to obtain correct tension
  • 22 sts and 34 rnds = 10 cm (4 in) in Sugar Cube pattern worked in the round on 4 mm (US 6) needles after wet blocking, or size needed to obtain correct tension

You will need DK weight yarn in the following amounts:

  • Single-brim hat: 45 (60, 80, 100, 130, 160, 200) m 50 (70, 90, 110, 145, 180, 220) yds
  • Double-brim hat: 60 (75, 105, 130, 160, 200, 250) m 70 (85, 115, 145, 180, 220, 275) yds

I would recommend using a smooth DK weight yarn with good stitch definition to make the stitches pop. The sample is knitted in merino/bamboo, but a merino or merino/nylon blend would also work well. If you want a warmer pair of mitts, you can use a non-superwash wool.


  • 3.75 mm (US 5) and 4 mm (US 6) DPNs, set of 5, or
  • 3.75 mm (US 5) and 4 mm (US 6) circular needles at least 80 cm (32 in) in length to work magic loop, or
  • 3.75 mm (US 5) and 4 mm (US 6) circular needle, 40 cm (16 in) in length – note: if you choose to use a small circular needle, you will also need DPNs in the larger size to work the crown decreases


  • Stitch marker x 1 to mark beg of rnd
  • Additional stitch markers to mark pattern repeats (optional)
  • Balloon for blocking (optional)
  • Pom-pom (optional)

Pattern notes
The instructions are for the smallest size, with larger sizes in parentheses: Premmie (Newborn, 6 months, 12 months, Child/Teenager, Adult, Large Adult).

The sample is knitted in Blue Fern Yarns Boo (DK, 225 m per 100 g skein, 80% superwash merino, 20% bamboo) in the colourway Muscovado and size Large Adult – single brim. Yarn support was provided by Blue Fern Yarns; you can find all their yarns on their website: This colourway was dyed specifically for this pattern.

If you are knitting the hat in hand-dyed yarn and are
working from more than one skein, you may wish to alternate the skeins throughout to avoid a
colour jog when you start a new skein.

This pattern was tech edited by Jo Torr.