Liffey (Cable&Lace Knitted Hat)

Liffey is a mixed pattern hat, including both cables and lace, in a cute leafy shape. The traditional ribbing is replaced by an i-cord, tied at the back to form a bow.

Size: to fit head circumference of 56cm (for bigger or smaller size, consider changing yarn thickness and/or needle size).

Yarn: SOKA (70% wool, 30% polyamide, 50g=150m), 1.3 skeins.

A set of 4 (5) double-pointed needles: UK size 11, US size 2.5, metric size 3mm; 2 cable/auxiliary needles of the same size.

Gauge: 10cm = 26 sts in pattern.

k – knit
p – purl
rep – repeat
k2tog – knit 2 together
yo – yarn over: make an additional loop by passing the yarn under the right needle from back to front, then over the needle and to the back.
k tbl – knit through the back of the stitch.
SKP – “slip, knit, pull” – slip 1 stitch to the right needle as to purl, k1, pull through the slip stitch.
SK2P – “slip, knit 2, pull” slip 1 stitch to the right needle as to purl, k2tog, pull through the slip stitch.
SP2P – “slip, purl 2, pull” slip 1 stitch to the right needle, p2tog, pull through the slip stitch.
Cross 3 – slip 3 stitches from the left needle onto a cable needle, hold to front of work, slip the following 3 stitches onto the second cable needle, hold to back of work; knit the following 3 stitches, knit the 3 stitches from the second cable needle, knit the 3 stitches from the first cable needle.

Knitting Instructions:

On double-pointed needles, cast on 144 sts. Continue in pattern.


The pattern is worked in rounds.

R1: * yo, k1, yo, p3, k9, p3, * rep from * around.
R2: * k1 tbl, k1, k1 tbl, p3, k9, p3, * rep from * around.
R3: * k1, yo, k1, yo, k1, p3, k9, p3, * rep from * around.
R4: * k5, p3, k9, p3, * rep from * around.
R5: * k2, yo, k1, yo, k2, p3, k9, p3, * rep from * around.
R6: * k7, p3, k9, p3, * rep from * around.
R7: * k3, yo, k1, yo, k3, p3; Cross 3; p3, * rep from * around.
R8 – 14: * k9, p3, k9, p3, * rep from * around.
R15: * Cross 3, p3; SKP, k5, k2tog, p3, * rep from * around.
R16: * k9, p3, k7, p3, * rep from * around.
R17: * k9, p3, SKP, k3, k2tog, p3, * rep from * around.
R18: * k9, p3, k5, p3, * rep from * around.
R19: * k9, p3, SKP, k1, k2tog, p3, * rep from * around.
R20: * k9, p3, k3, p3, * rep from * around.
R21: * k9, p3, SK2P, p3, * rep from * around.
R22: * k9, p3, k1, p3, * rep from * around.
R23: * SKP, k5, k2tog, p3, yo, k1, yo, p3, * rep from * around.
R24: * k7, p3, k1 tbl, k1, k1 tbl, p3, * rep from * around.
R25: * SKP, k3, k2tog, p3, k1, yo, k1, yo, k1, p3, * rep from * around.
R26: * k5, p3, k5, p3, * rep from * around.
R27: * SKP, k1, k2tog, p3, k2, yo, k1, yo, k2, p3, * rep from * around.
R28: * k3, p3, k7, p3, * rep from * around.
R29: * SK2P, p3, k3, yo, k1, yo, k3, p3, * rep from * around.
R30: * k1, p3, k9, p3, * rep from * around.

R31 – 60: rep from R1.

R61: * k1, p3, SKP, k5, k2tog, p3, *rep from * around.
R62: * k1, p3, k7, p3, *rep from * around.
R63: * k1, p2tog, p1, SKP, k3, k2tog, p1, p2tog* rep from * around.
R64: * k1, p2, k5, p2, * rep from * around.
R65: * k1, p2, SKP, k1, k2tog, p2, * rep from * around.
R66: * k1, p2, k3, p2, *rep from * around.
R67: * k1, p2tog, SK2P, p2tog, * rep from * around.
R68 – 70: * k1, p3 * rep from * around.
R71: * k1, SP2P * rep from * around.
R72: * k1, p1 * rep from * around.

Cut thread, pull the tail through the remaining 18 stitches, stitch to the wrong side, knot and weave in end.

Knit an i-cord, ca.90 cm long. If you don’t want a bow, make the cord the same length as the rim of the hat (well stretched).


Wash both the hat and the cord before assembly.
Starting at the front (and in the middle of the cord), sew the cord onto the rim of the hat. Tie a bow-knot. Wear with pride.

Creative Commons License
Liffey (Cable&Lace Knitted Hat) by Iryna Klionava is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Belgium License.

View pdf (in English)    Visualiser le pdf (en français)

28 thoughts on “Liffey (Cable&Lace Knitted Hat)

  1. Carolyns Yarns says:

    Awesome pattern — wow! I am struggling with cable crosses and am fascinated with the stitches on two cables plus the three stitches in between. Can you tell me more about this or a link to more info?

    Last question: can this be knitted in the round but from the bottom up for a sweater? I see all these great patterns ITR for hats and keep thinking why can't i leave a bigger hole for the neck line. Still having trouble with the math on increases or decreases and keeping the pattern.

    Thank you –Carolyn

  2. klionik says:

    I wrote a long answer yesterday but it doesn't seen to have arrived… Thus, a short version:
    1. To learn more about cables and lace grab any knitting book or to to a website like Vogue Knitting, Knitting Daily, Interweave Knits, Knitty to name just a few, there are a lot more.
    2. It IS knitted from the bottom. If you want to use this pattern for a sweater (knitted in the round) you don't have to change anything, just calculate the number of stitches and make sure it divides by 16 (that's the initial number of stitches making a complete repeat; e.g. the hat has 9 such repeats). If you choose to knit flat, invert every 2nd (wrong side) row.
    3. As for the math, stitch markers are very helpful. If you don't have any, take several paper clips or cut several rings from a drinking straw. Slip one paper clip or ring onto the needle just in front of the 1st stitch of the round – this will be your beginning marker (as you come to it while knitting, slip it from left to right needle). Do the same to mark any other important place, like the beginning of a pattern or the middle of the piece you're working on. The good thing about using markers is that you only have to count once: the markers will keep track of your stitches for you.

  3. klionik says:

    I can't find it either… I used to buy it at a supermarket (no idea how such a good yarn managed to land there) but they don't sell it anymore. Look for a similar yarn: fingering weight/4ply, ca. 150m for 50g, to knit on 3mm needles. In short, it's sock yarn that is a bit thicker than usual. Normal sock yarn (knit on 2.5mm needles) will do as well but you'll have to add one more repeat (=16sts). Make a swatch to be sure!

  4. Anonymous says:

    Love this hat and will be starting it soon. Since I really dislike sewing anything, could you make the I-cord and then pick up stitches directly on it to start the hat? Obviously you would have to carefully measure for the bow and mark where to start and stop the hat stitches, but I think it could work.

  5. stacy says:

    Wow. Such a great hat. The last thing I need is yet another hat project on my list of never ending hat projects, but this one is going to the top of the list. Thanks for the free pattern!

  6. Celi says:

    I wonder if it is hard to make? I taught myself to knit and willing to try anything. HaHa. Thank you for the pattern. I will try to make it.

    • klionik says:

      I’m largely self-taught too! The cables on this hat can be quite fiddly for a beginner but not impossible. If in doubt, knit a swatch and you’ll see if the bar is too night or not ))

  7. Tomato says:

    Very lovely hat. Just wonder if it is easier to pick stitches from the I-cords and knit up, that will save time to sew them together but your first stitch of the pattern is a yarn over, so might need to knit one row o k before starting the pattern, what is your thought?

    • klionik says:

      Sure, you can knit the i-cord first and do a you say or you can make a knit-on i-cord once you’ve finished the hat. These techniques were above my level when I wrote this pattern. If I knitted Liffey today, I’d make a provisional cast-on, then, when the hat is finished, I’d knit an i-cord that at a certain point becomes knit-on.

      • Tomato says:

        ty for your reply …. I will keep you posted on my progress here … hope you don’t mind my sharing :)

      • klionik says:

        Yes, please, do! I’ll be glad to hear about your progress! Have you checked up other knitters’ projects? There are some very cool variations that might inspire you to rethink the design!

  8. lotusburger says:

    I am almost finished with my hat!! Thank you so much for the great free pattern!! It is a fun pattern that really keeps your intrest! I am wondering how many you cast on for the i cord?? Thanks!!!

    • klionik says:

      Great news – and you’re welcome! Cast on 3 stitches, this will be enough; If I were to knit it again, I’d make a knit-on i-cord to avoid sewing it on: begin as a normal i-cord and when it’s long enough to tie, begin to knit it on (k3, pick up 1 from the edge of the hat, on all following rows: k2, k2tog tbl, pick up 1). I usually pick up from 3 edge stitches and skip the 4th to compensate for the difference between the width and length of the stitches (a stitch is usually not perfectly square, it’s longer that it’s wide, and when you begin to knit sideways, like with the i-cord, you’ll notice that the i-cord makes the edge flare; skipping one edge stitch once in a while helps prevent it). When you’ve worked like this all around, switch to normal i-cord once again (k2, k2tog tbl, but don’t pick up – you’ll have 3 stitches again, continue knitting until desired length). Good luck with the finishing!

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