Tom Daley on how to knit the perfect hat for your dog

BY Tom Daley

14th Nov 2022 Life

Tom Daley on how to knit the perfect hat for your dog
Tom Daley is known as much for his knitting as for his diving these days, and with winter coming he shares this guide to knitting a hat for your dog
I mean, who doesn't love a dog in a hat? I do love dressing up dogs; the first item I was photographed knitting at the Olympics was a jumper for Izzy the Frenchie!
This fun and playful hat is knitted in neon colour stripes with contrast black, and two pompoms for added cute factor. Ideal for all pooches, from your neighbour's greyhound to your Auntie's poodle—and of course Ned, pictured below. Note of caution: a dog should never be left alone wearing any garment or with a pompom.
Knit a hat for your dog

How to knit a hat for your dog

Measurements (one size)
Head circumference 32cm (12½ in)
Finished length 22cm (8¾ in)  
Will fit medium to large size dog breeds  
What you will need 
  • Schachenmayr Bravo 100% acrylic 133m (145 yards) per 50g (1 ¾ oz)
  • A 1 x 50g (1 ¾ oz) ball in Black (08226) 
  • B 1 x 50g (1 ¾ oz) ball in Neon pink (08234) 
  • C 1 x 50g (1 ¾ oz) ball in Neon green (08233) 
  • 1 pair 3.25mm (US 3) knitting needles 
  • 1 pair 3.75mm (US 5) knitting needles 
  • Stitch holders 
  • Pompom maker or cardboard for pompoms 
  • Scissors 
  • Yarn needle 
Tension (gauge)  
23 stitches and 30 rows to 10cm (4 in) over stocking/stockintte stich on 3.75mm (US 5) needles. Change needle size as necessary to achieve correct tension (gauge). 
St(s): stitch(es)
St st: stocking (stockinette) stitch
K: knit
*: repeat instructions following a single asterisk as many times as directed afterwards
P: purl
Dec: decrease/decreasing
Tog: together
Tbl: through back loop
RS: right side
To make 
Stripe sequence 
2 rows A  
2 rows B  
2 rows C 
Using 3.25mm (US 3) needles and A, cast on 71 sts and follow stripe sequence as given working in rib as follows:  
Row 1 (RS): *K1, p1, rep from* to last st, k1.  
Row 2: *P1, k1, rep from * to last st, p1. Repeat last 2 rows a further 11 times.  
Next row: Rib to last 9 sts and slip these unworked sts onto a holder. 62 sts.  
Next row: Rib to last 9 sts and slip these unworked sts onto a second holder. 53 sts. Change to 3.75mm (US 5) needles and starting with a knit row, continue in St st and follow stripe sequence as set until work meas 23cm (9 in) from cast-on edge, ending with RS facing for next row.
Shape crown  
Row 1 (RS): K34, k2tog tbl, turn. 1st dec.  
Row 2: Sl1, p15, p2tog, turn. 1st dec. 
Row 3: Sl1, k15, k2tog tbl, turn. 1st dec. Rep last 2 rows until 17 sts rem. Leave rem 17 sts on stitch holder.  
With RS facing, slip 9 sts from second holder onto a 3.25mm (US 3) needle, keeping stripe sequence correct pick up and knit 33 sts along side of hat, k17 sts from crown holder, pick up and knit 33 sts along other side of hat, then rib as set across 9 sts from rem holder. 101 sts. Starting with A and following stripe sequence as set, work 9 rows in rib. Cast off (bind off) using a 3.75mm (US 5) needle.  
To finish
Weave in any yarn ends.  
Join neckband at front.
Ned and Tom

Masterclass: adding pompoms 

Who doesn't love a pompom? They bring such joy and they're a great way to use up scraps of yarn.
They're really easy to make, either with a store-bought pompom maker or in the traditional way with two circles of stiff cardboard, slightly wider in diameter than the finished size of the pompom with a hole in the centre of each, measuring just under half the diameter.
Pompoms (make 2)
Make two pompoms using a pompom maker or cardboard circles approx. 6cm (2½ in) in diameter. Measure 8m (9 yards) each of two colours and hold together to wind the pompom. Using the long yarn ends on the pompoms, sew securely to the hat in the ear positions. 
  • If you're using a pompom maker, open out the two parts and hold them together. Wind two yarns along each half in turn until the semicircular gap is filled, then fasten the catches. If you're using cardboard, thread a large-eyed needle with two long strands of yarn. Holding the circles together, stitch the yarn continually through the centre and around the outer edges, keeping the strands close together, until the centre space is almost filled.  
  • Insert the tip of sharp scissors between the two sides of the pompom maker or two cardboard circles and snip through the layers of yarn all around the edge.  
  • Slip a length of yarn through the centre space and wrap it tightly around the yarn strands. This will be the centre of the pompom. Firmly knot the yarn, leaving long ends that can later be used to attach the pompom. Remove the pompom maker or cardboard circles.  
  • Fluff up the pompom and trim any uneven strands of yarn sticking out for a neat, round finish.
Made with Love by Tom Daley is published by HQ, HarperCollins on October 27, 2022 (Hardback, £28)
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