Year of Hats

Introducing the Year of (Bulky) Hats: Wister by Courtney Kelley

We continue to be overwhelmed at the positive reception to our Year of Hats from 2019, and it was a no brainer to do it again in Germantown Bulky!

As with the Year of Hats, the Year of (Bulky) Hats is a year long series featuring a FREE hat pattern every month.

The first pattern in the series is the Wister Hat designed by Courtney Kelley, and it is sure to be the squishy, slipped stitch, cabled, cosy hat of your dreams! She hopes you enjoy knitting it as much as she did.

Like a lot of people, I enjoy the process of knitting for the calming repetition it provides. It slows my mind down, and allows me a few moments of meditative peace at the end of a busy, busy day. These days, with three kids under the age of 5, I really don’t want to knit anything I have to think about too much! The moments I have for knitting are few and precious, and I don’t always want to squander them trying to wrack my brain to figure out where I left off in a chart of a section of complex shaping. I want something I can look at and immediately get into rhythm with. This hat delivers! There is a simple two-row repeat which is easy enough to keep track of, and you only ever have to count to 2. I have already knit this design more than once – I think it’s addictive.


Kelbourne Woolens Germantown Bulky (100% N. American wool; 123 yds/100 gm skein): forest green 310, 1 skein.
14 sts and 23 rnds = 4” (10 cm) in Spiral Slip Stitch on larger needles, after blocking.
1 – 16” (40 cm) US 8 (5 mm) circular.
1 – 16” (40 cm) US 10 (6 mm) circular.
1 – set US 10 (6 mm) DPNs.
Check your gauge and adjust needle size(s) accordingly if necessary.
Ring marker, stitch marker, cable needle (optional), tapestry needle, Kelbourne Woolens label, sewing needle
18.25 (46.5 cm) circumference, unstretched; 9” (23 cm) height.
Knitting, purling, simple cable cross.

Our amazing retailers will be carrying kits (and many have the Wister Hat kit in stock now!) and we will also have them on our site.

The Wister Hat wouldn’t be a Kelbourne Woolens pattern without useful tips! Even though the repetitive pattern is easy to memorize, there are three embedded links in the PDF to help you with any new skills:

• Working From Charts: This one is a four part series that includes knit/purl stitches, colorwork, cables, and lace!
Cabling Without a Cable Needle
Working Cables Across Repeats

You can download the FREE Wister pattern on Ravelry here.

Knitting a sample? Be sure to tag us on Instagram @kelbournewoolens and use the hashtags #YearOfBulkyHats and #KelbourneWoolens.

Images: Linette Messina Kielinski

6 thoughts on “Introducing the Year of (Bulky) Hats: Wister by Courtney Kelley

  1. Diane Wagner says:

    Looking forward to this hat series. Will you be publishing release date of the upcoming hats? I bought the hat kit from Yarn Bar in MT. No store in my area was stocking them. I used to knit only socks, then discovered knitting hats. Now I’m enjoying knitting hats.

    1. Hi there! Each hat will be published on the first Friday of the month, so February’s pattern will be on 2/4, March on 3/4, April on 4/1, etc…Yarn Bar is an awesome shop! We’re go glad you were able to get a kit from them. – Kate

  2. Chantalle says:

    I cannot, for the life of me, figure this pattern out! I bought the kit from a local independent yarn shop to get back into knitting (my grandmother taught me the basics over a decade ago, and I haven’t practiced a ton since then). The only part I know I did right is the brim. But I’ve knitted and unraveled and re-knitted the next eight rounds three times. The cables don’t seem to be developing, and I know I’m doing something wrong. It just looks like a lumpy moss stitch after the brim, and I can’t bring myself to unravel it again. I’ve read the pattern and tips on this site over and over, and I just can’t figure out what I’m doing wrong… 🙁

    1. We’re sorry to hear that you are having difficulties! Perhaps you could email us at for assistance, or see if the LYS where you purchased the hat is offering a class or private lessons? – Kate

  3. Barbara says:

    I loved knitting this hat – the pattern was so easy to memorize. My friends commented on how the hat “swirled”
    around. It was a quick knit and I’m looking forward to the next month.

  4. Margaret Walthers says:

    What cast on is recommended for this hat? I tried a 1 purl, 1 knit cast on and the other was cable cast on.

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