Sock Monkey Baby Hat

Sock Monkey is a doll traditionally made from a sock. There is no hard and fast rule on how one has to look. I used yarns in my stash though any colors will do. This baby hat is made with two strands held double and crocheted at the same time. The eyes, mouth, ears and pom pom are all made with one strand. The Ragg color is a grey/white blend. The yarn was made that way but it is not necessary to use bi-colored yarn. A similar effect can be achieved by using one strand of grey and one strand of white when crocheting. An alternate color is a brown and white. For that matter, any colors can be used. A pink and white held together would make for an adorable girl monkey hat (see picture). These hats were made for the local Army hospital neonatal unit.

Materials:

Yarn:      Red Heart Super Saver Solid Burgundy (red)

Red Heart Super Saver Solid White

Red Heart Ragg (grey/white)

Hook:    L11/8.00mm for the hat

J/10/6.00mm for the eyes, ears, mouth

Stuffing for mouth

Yarn Needle

 

Abbreviations

Ch = chain

Dc = double crochet

Hdc = half double crochet

Inc = increase, crochet two stitches in the same space

Sl st = slip stitch

Sc = single crochet

St = stitch

 

Sock Monkey Hat

Newborn

White yarn held double

Ch 2 (or magic loop)

Rnd 1: 6 sc in second ch from hook. (6)

Rnd 2: Hdc inc in each stitch around. Join with a sl st. (12)

Rnd 3: Ch 3, *dc inc, dc* five times, dc inc. Join with a sl st. Finish off. Cut yarn; weave in ends. (18)

Attach two strands of burgundy to any st of rnd 3.Crochet with yarn held double.

Rnd 4: Ch 3, *dc inc, 2 dc* five times, dc inc, dc. Join with a sl st. Finish off. Cut yarn; weave in ends. (24)

Attach two strands of ragg to any st of rnd 4. Crochet with yarn held double.

Rnd 5: Ch 3, *dc inc, 3 dc* five times, dc inc, 2 dc. Join with a sl st. (30)

Rnd 6-7: Ch 3, dc around. Join with a sl st. (30)

Rnd 8: Ch 3, dc around alternating between crocheting in the front loop and the back loop. (Dc in the front loop, dc in the back loop… around.) Join with a sl st. (30)

 

Mouth

Red (one strand)

Ch 11

Row 1: Sl st in second ch from hook, sl st, 2 sc, 2 hdc, 2 sc, 2 sl st. Continue working around on the other side of the ch. 2 sl st, 2 sc, 2 hdc, 2 sc, 2 sl st. Sl st into next st. Finish off. Cut yarn; weave in end. (20)

Attach white to same st as last sl st of row 1.(one strand)

Row 2: Ch 2, dc in same st as ch 2 space, dc, 2 hdc, 2 sc, 2 hdc, dc, dc inc, dc inc, dc, 2 hdc, 2 sc, 2 hdc, dc, dc inc. Join with a sl st to the top of the ch 2. (24)

Row 3: Ch 1, sc around. Join with a sl st to the first sc. Finish off. Cut yarn leaving a long tail to sew mouth to face. (24)

Stuff the mouth and sew to the front of the hat along the bottom of the brim of the hat.

 

Eyes (make 2)

Black (one strand)

Ch 3

Rnd 1: 9 hdc in third ch from hook. Finish off. Cut yarn leaving a long tail to sew to face. (8)

Sew eyes above the mouth as desired.  If there is enough yarn left, make a couple nostril stitches on the mouth. See picture for placement.

 

Ears (make 2)

Ragg (one strand)

Ch 3

Row 1: 6 hdc in third ch from hook. (7)

Row 2: Ch 2, turn. Hdc in third st from hook, 6 hdc inc. (14)

Row 3: Ch 1, turn. Sc in each st across. Finish off. Cut yarn  leaving  a long tail for sewing. (14)

Sew ears to the sides of the hat.

 

Pom Pom

Make a pom pom and sew it to the top center of hat. For directions on how to make a pom pom without a pom pom maker, click on How to Make a Pom Pom.

Adapting Patterns, Variations on a Theme

Often we fall in love with knit and crochet patterns based on completed projects we see. Sometimes, however, the project isn’t quite to our liking. Learning to see through projects to what they could be when adapted will increase your options.

Mr. and Mrs. Sock Monkey

Case in point, my sister wanted a sock monkey ski helmet cover. Up to this point I had only crocheted a sock monkey hat. Rather than wait for a pattern to appear online, I used the basic directions for the sock monkey hat and adapted it where it needed it. Since I was making one for her husband as well, I decided to make them Mr. & Mrs. Sock Monkey. Simple adaptations in the form of eyelashes and longer stranded pom-poms feminized it. Adaptations in the form of increased rows and sizes of rows helped them fit on the helmets. I also decreased around the brim so it would naturally hug the helmet and stay on.

A simpler adaptation to make is changing color. It is amazing how different a project looks when done in a different color. For Christmas I made five ponies from the same pattern. I hate to say it but some of them were cuter because of the color of yarn! The more colorful ones reminded me of the “My Little Pony” toys. I also made other adaptations based on recipient request. One pony became a unicorn. Another a Pegasus. For the Pegasus, I followed the directions for the wings of a dragon. This simple change saved me lots of time in trying to create a wing pattern. The horn I had to made on my own.

Thinking back on my childhood, I remembered how enamored I was with horses that had stars on their foreheads. The simple adaptation of a second color made the brown pony unique.

I hate to say that the color can make or break the project, but it is true. There have been times where the project I made just didn’t work for me because of the colors I chose. It’s a little disheartening when you spend so many hours on the project!

Making adaptations is easier to do when you have experience making similar projects. I made a Max doll from “Where the Wild Things Are” for my nephew. There were a few aspects of the original pattern I didn’t like. Because I had made a similar sized doll before, I used the leg construction of the other doll to make the legs for Max. I also made a different crown because I didn’t like the one in the pattern. Minor adjustments to the eyes, nose and hair, and I was much happier with the doll.

I followed the entire pattern for the giraffe project (below) except for the spots. It called for sewed spots. I wasn’t sure I would do them adequately so I crocheted each spot. In the end it was probably the longer/slower way to make the spots, but I was happy with the result. It was a minor change, but had a significant impact aesthetically.

Adapting patterns may require extra time and reworking of various sections, but they can be well worth the effort. Give yourself plenty of time to play with the pattern and don’t be afraid to experiment with color. You may not like every change you’ve made, but that will add to your knowledge of the craft and help you make future decisions.

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