Knitting, Plain Speaking, Politics

Banned on Ravelry! Make Hats Great Again

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, here it is.  The happy hat, the charming chapeau, the tasteful topper, the lovely lid, in short:

The most beautiful MAGA hat in the world!  The world has never seen anything like it!  Ever in the history of the world.  No one’s ever designed or knitted a hat this beautiful!  No one!

Now, you must be careful.  Because this hat is dangerous.  It’s so dangerous that the world’s largest site for knitters and crocheters, ravelry.com, won’t let its members post a pattern for a hat like this, and has banned support for, and patterns and projects that demonstrate support for, the current President of the United States, Donald J. Trump.

It’s OK to have other political opinions and cite, and discuss them widely.  It’s OK if those opinions offend site members who support President Trump, but people who do, or who disagree with what’s said, may not respond with opinions that are deemed “support for Donald Trump or his administration.”  They must keep their opinions to themselves.

Meanwhile, it is perfectly OK for Ravelry members to post patterns  with knitted, and crocheted, designs that say “FUCK TRUMP” or patterns with names like “President Prick Cactus.”  That’s all good.

But a pattern for a nice MAGA hat like this?  Nope.  As the owner of the Ravelry site is alleged to have tweeted, after removing some equally dangerous patterns from Ravelry earlier this year, “I’m sorry that you had to look at that shit.”  (I guess he’s doesn’t give a flying fig about about my poor eyes having to look at all the  the “FUCK TRUMP” shit, and he has never wondered if, perhaps, I’d rather not look at “FUCK” anything shit.  On a nice knitting and crocheting site.  For Pete’s sake.

Now, to be clear, Ravelry may set any sort of policy it likes.  And people are free to agree or disagree.  Or leave or stay.  But when Ravelry makes a statement saying they are banning any “support of Donald Trump or his administration” because “support of the Trump administration is unambiguously support for white supremacy,” they’ve gone too far.  I don’t know any supporters of President Trump who are white supremacists, or who support white supremacy.  And I would imagine the number of Trump supporters on Ravelry who are white supremacists, or who support white supremacy, is vanishingly small.  What Ravelry should be doing, as any social networking site should be doing, is removing individuals who have shown themselves unable to adhere to its terms of service, which terms they agreed to when they joined the site.  It should not be calumniating tens of millions of good people (tens of millions of them not even Ravelry members) it doesn’t know anything about, by making false and defamatory claims like that on the basis of manufactured evidence or no evidence at all.

Anyhoo, as a public service, and because I can, I’m offering you the world’s greatest knitted MAGA hat pattern, absolutely free!  No ifs, and, or buts.  Anyone may print this pattern and knit this hat.  My only request is that you do it all in a spirit of goodwill, and with a happy heart.  You are all welcome, no matter your political affiliation, as long as you meet those two conditions.

Now that’s inclusivity!

WORLD’S GREATEST MAGA HAT PATTERN
 by rightwingknitjob, ©2019

A few notes before you start: Most average heads are about 20 inches around.  You should knit the hat a little smaller than that, since knitting stretches, so if your gauge (tension) is 5 stitches to every inch, you will need about 94 stitches to knit a 19-inch hat.  If you are knitting for a child, or if you yourself have a big head, you will need to adjust accordingly

This pattern is knitted flat and then seamed.  Easy-peasy.

This pattern requires you to have an even number of stitches.  With worsted weight yarn, and 4.5mm (US7) needles, you’ll probably knit to a gauge of about five stitches per inch.  So, whatever circumference you think you need, subtract an inch, multiply by five, and if you come up with an odd number, subtract one more stitch.  That should be good enough.  This is like horseshoes.  Close counts.  If your gauge is wildly different, or if you’ve chosen a much finer, or bulkier yarn, you’ll need to adjust for that.

You can have a pompom, or a tassel, or not.  You can roll the brim, or not (if you like a wide rolled brim, increase the ribbing to four inches, or do two inches of plain stockinette before starting the logo.

You can use the logo chart on other projects.  Perhaps on either end of a scarf?  Repeatedly around either the lower part, or the yoke of a sweater?  As long as you don’t have increasing or decreasing taking place during the twelve logo rows, you can place it anywhere on your design.

Ready?  Here it is:

Yarn:  Two colors (strongly suggest red and white, but whatever floats your boat) of worsted weight yarn.  4oz (100g) of the main color for hat and tassel; a few yards (12-15 should be plenty) for the logo.

Needles: One pair straight 4.5mm (US7) needles, or one circular needle of the same size, or size needed to obtain a gauge of approximately 5 stitches per inch.

Gauge: Approximately 5 stitches per inch.

Miscellaneous: One large yarn needle with a big eye.  Cardboard for the pompom, if you don’t have one of those nifty pompom-making things.

Instructions:  Cast on 94 stitches with main color, very loosely.  Remember, this is going to go around your head, and you are going to feel any tightness every time you wear this hat.  It is almost impossible to cast on too loosely.  If you are having difficulty keeping the stitches loose, cast on using needles two sizes larger than the ones for the hat.  Just remember to change back to your “real” needles after you have cast on!

Work 2″ in K1P1 ribbing, ending with the right side facing you.

Work one inch plain stockinette stitch (K1 row, P1 row).  If you’re going to roll a deep brim, work two inches.  End with the right side facing you.  (Reminder:  if you’re using a circular needle, don’t get carried away.  Work this flat–back and forth.)

Now, time for the logo.  There’s a bit of preparation, because you want to center the logo on your knitting.  The logo is 42 stitches wide.  So, if you have 94 stitches in your hat, you’ll subtract 42 from the total number (94) and come up with 52 stitches to split evenly on either side of the logo.  In that case, you’d knit 26 stitches, work the 42 logo stitches, and then finish with the 26 stitches on the other side.  If you have more, or fewer stitches, your number of stitches on either side of the logo will be different.

Here is the grid (click to embiggen).  Start at the bottom right corner with row 1 (which should be a knit row).  Odd-numbered rows are knit.  Even-numbered rows are purl.  After a couple of rows, look at your work, and make sure you’re knitting it the right way round.  This isn’t Wonderland (although you couldn’t prove it by me, some days of the week).

Once again, the trick with the logo is to keep the stranding of the colors loose across the back of your work.  Colorwork has a tendency to be tight, and to pull, so keep your “floats” loose.  If you’re new to this, check out some of the videos on techniques which abound on the Internet.  And every few stitches, stop and pull your knitting a bit horizontally to make sure you’re not carrying the floats too tightly.

Once you’ve finished the logo (12 rows; the last one should be purl), you can relax, it’s plain sailing from now on.  Keep knitting in stockinette stitch until you’re between 7 and 8 inches from the top of your ribbing (I usually go to 8″ because I have long hair and I sometimes wear it up and I need a bit of extra room, YMMV.)

When the hat’s the length you like, end with  the right side facing you, and do the following:

Next row: K2 together, all the way across
Last row: Purl

Finishing: cut your yarn a couple of feet from the end of your knitting.  Thread the yarn through the needle with a big eye, and taking the knitting needle with the stitches still on, thread the needle through each stitch, starting at the end where the yarn tail is.  As you do that, slide the stitches off the knitting needle and onto the yarn.  When they’re all off the knitting needle, gently pull the yarn to gather and tighten up the stitches as much as you can, without breaking anything, and take a couple of stitches to form a tight circle which will be the top of the hat.

Now, stitch the seam.  Again, there are videos and tutorials all over the place about how to do this. My advice? Just sew the edges together so that they look OK and neat, and you will be fine.  Nobody really cares how you did it.  You will also need to “run in” the ends of the ends of yarn where you started and ended the logo.  Do this on the back of your hat, just twisting them in and out around a few of the purl ridges.  Don’t pull them tight, leave them a little loose (similar to a darn), and then cut the end.

If you like, you can make a pompom like the one shown by wrapping the remaining yarn around two small pieces of cardboard, tying it across the middle and then cutting and fluffing the ends.  Sew it on the end of your hat with a piece of yarn. (Check out tutorials for how to do this, too!)

That’s it.  You’re done.  Wear your hat with pride, and go out and do some good in the world!

Speaking of which:  This pattern is free.  Any pattern I offer here will be free.  But if you like it, please consider making a small donation to  a military or veterans non-profit to help out men and women who have served.  Even small amounts add up, and are much appreciated.  Thanks!

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