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Crochet Tutorial for a Preemie Beanie in 2 Sizes

Small red crochet hat on a white surface with a matching ball of yarn, a written crochet pattern, a crochet hook, and a tapestry needle. Text on the image reads: Crochet tutorial for a preemie beanie. Banana Moon Studio.

Crochet tutorial for a preemie beanie

In this crochet tutorial for a preemie beanie you’ll find a free written pattern with helpful notes and photos, information about which materials are best to use, and a free video to show you each step of crocheting this tiny preemie hat.

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A small red crochet hat on a white surface along with a some printed sheets of paper, a crochet hook, and a tapestry needle. A white panel with text reads: How to crochet a preemie beanie. Free tutorial. Banana Moon Studio.

What size should I crochet a preemie beanie?

An average newborn head circumference is between about 12 and 14 inches according to a quick internet search. Preemie babies come in a range of sizes, depending on how pre-term they are and their genetics.

Given this, you could crochet hats in any circumference smaller than 12 inches and it could fit a preemie. In this tutorial I will share two sizes of a preemie hat. The larger one has a circumference of about 9 3/4 inches, while the smaller one has a circumference of about ??? inches. Both of these will fit preemies, and the larger one will also fit some newborns.

What materials will I need to crochet a preemie beanie?

You will of course need a crochet hook and a tapestry needle to crochet this preemie hat.

My favorite crochet hooks are the Streamline Resin hooks from Furl’s Fiberarts. They are very lightweight and feature an inline hook shape and a thick, ergonomic handle. I used a size J (6 mm) for the hat in this tutorial. If you need a tapestry needle, those can be purchased here.

7 Colorful crochet hooks fanned out over a white surface. Text on the image reads: Banana Moon Studio.

But let’s talk about what kind of yarn to use for just a moment. I suggest a yarn that can be both machine washed and dried. This will insure that whoever receives it doesn’t need to provide special care for it. If someone is taking care of a newborn, especially one with special needs, they don’t need any extra work to do!

Also, make sure that they yarn you choose is soft and hypoallergenic. For all of these reasons, a soft, premium acrylic yarn is ideal. I used Anthem from Cascade Yarns, which can be purchased through your local yarn shop.

Let’s move on to the written preemie beanie pattern

This pattern is called Afton Hat. I originally wrote this crochet pattern in seven sizes from the larger preemie size included here, through Adult L. You can find all of those crochet hat sizes in the free written pattern here.

Turquoise crochet winter hat worn by a woman in the woods. Text on the image reads: Banana Moon Studio.

Or you can purchase the original hat crochet pattern on Ravelry or Etsy. However, this PDF version does not include the smaller preemie size, which you can find below.

Below you will find the written pattern for the original preemie size, plus one additional smaller preemie size.

Preemie Afton Hat

By April Garwood of Banana Moon Studio

(C) 2023, 2024 April Garwood

(C)2024 April Garwood. As with all my patterns, please do not make paper or digital copies for others. Instead, please direct them to my website to get their own. Thank you!

Difficulty Level: Intermediate

Available Sizes: Preemie S and Preemie L

Finished Measurements: circumference 8 [9 3/4] inches; height 5 [5 3/4] inches.

Yarn: Cascade Yarns Anthem (100% Acrylic; 186 yds; 100 g; yarn weight category: 4/worsted/medium): About 40 yds any color.

Crochet Hook: J (6 mm), or size needed to obtain gauge.

Notions: Tapestry needle.

Gauge: 9 pattern repeats x 6 rows = About 4 inches in Forked Half Double Crochet Stitch from p. 10 of Crochet Stitches Visual Encyclopedia by Robyn Chachula.

Special Stitches

Forked half double crochet (fkhdc): Let’s go over this unusual, non-standard stitch in detail.

First, yarnover (yo).

Close up photo of a partially completed crochet preemie hat and a crochet hook with a strand of yarn wrapped around it about to begin a stitch. Text on the image reads: Banana Moon Studio.

Then, insert your hook in the first designated st. If this is the first fkhdc in the rnd, this will be the first st of the rnd. If it is not the first fkhdc in the rnd, this will be last st worked into by the previous st.

Close up photo of a partially completed crochet preemie hat and a crochet hook with three loops of yarn around it working on a stitch. Text on the image reads: Banana Moon Studio.

Yo again.

Close up photo of a partially completed crochet preemie hat and a crochet hook with three loops of yarn and a yarnover wrapped around it to make a stitch. Text on the image reads: Banana Moon Studio.

Pull up a loop through that st, and then yo again.

Close up photo of a partially completed crochet preemie hat and a crochet hook with three loops of yarn and a yarnover wrapped around it to make a stitch. Text on the image reads: Banana Moon Studio.

Insert your hook in the next st, and yo again.

Close up photo of a partially completed crochet preemie hat and a crochet hook with five loops of yarn and a yarnover around it to make a stitch. Text on the image reads: Banana Moon Studio.

Pull up a loop through that second st.

Close up photo of a partially completed crochet preemie hat and a crochet hook with five loops of yarn around it to make a stitch. Text on the image reads: Banana Moon Studio.

Yo again, and pull that through the first 3 loops.

Close up photo of a partially completed crochet preemie hat and a crochet hook with three loops of yarn around it about to finish a stitch. Text on the image reads: Banana Moon Studio.

Then yo one last time and pull that through the remaining 3 loops.

Close up photo of a partially completed crochet preemie hat and a crochet hook that has just finished a stitch. Text on the image reads: Banana Moon Studio.

If you prefer that in standard pattern language, it goes like this: Yo, insert hook in first designated st, yo, pull up a loop, yo, insert hook in second designated st, yo, pull up a loop, [yo, pull through 3 loops] 2 times.

Forked half double crochet decrease (dec): Yo, insert hook in first designated st, yo, pull up a loop, [yo, insert hook in next designated st, yo, pull up a loop] 2 times, yo, pull through 5 loops, yo pull through remaining 3 loops.

Uncommon Abbreviations

blo, back loop only

Notes

This pattern uses standard US terms. For help with abbreviations, get my free, printable crochet abbreviations list here.

See this tutorial post for help with basic crochet stitches.

Hat
Band

Ch 7

Row 1: Working in bottom ridge loops of chs, sc in 2nd ch from hook and each ch across, turn – 6 sts.

Row 2: Ch 1, sc blo in each st across, turn.

Repeat Row 2 for a total of 26 [32] rows, turn.

Seaming Row (WS): Without twisting band, bring beginning end up behind and even with working edge. Working through blo of working edge and under both loops of foundation chs, sl st across.

Turn band RS out.

Main Body of Hat

Setup Rnd: Setup Row: Ch 1, *sc in next 2 row ends, skip next row end, sc in next 3 row ends, skip next row end, repeat from * until 5 [4] row ends remain, skip next row end, sc in all remaining row ends, join to first st with sl st – 19 [23] sts.

Work in Forked Half Double Crochet stitch pattern for a total of 1 [2] rnds, as follows.

Row 1: Ch 2, fkhdc over first 2 sts, *fkhdc over last worked st and next st, repeat from * around, dc in last st worked, join to first st with sl st, turn – 18 [22] fkhdc; 1 dc.

Repeat Rnd 1 for pattern.

Crown

Rnd 1: Ch 2, fkhdc over first 2 sts, fkhdc over last worked st and next st, dec over last worked st and next 2 sts, *[fkhdc over last worked st and next st] 2 times, dec over last worked st and next 2 sts, repeat from * until 2 sts remain unworked, [fkhdc over last worked st and next st] 2 times, dc in last st worked, join to first st with sl st, turn – 14 [17] fkhdc; 1 dc.

Rnd 2: Ch 2, fkhdc over first 2 sts, dec over last worked st and next 2 sts, *fkhdc over last worked st and next st, dec over last worked st and
next 2 sts, repeat from * until 2 sts remain unworked, [fkhdc over last worked st and next st] 2 times, dc in last st worked, join to first st with sl st, turn – 10 [12] fkhdc; 1 dc.

Rnd 3: Ch 2, dec over first 3 sts, *dec over last worked st and next 2 sts, repeat from * until no sts remain unworked, dc in last st, join to first st with sl st – 5 [6] fkhdc; 1 dc. Fasten off with a long tail.

Finishing

Using the long tail and a tapestry needle, weave tail back and forth through tops of sts of final rnd and pull to close hole, go through tops of sts once or twice more to secure, pull tail to inside and weave in.

Weave in beginning yarn tail. Finished!

Crochet video tutorial for a preemie beanie

For help with the stitches involved, watch the video below.

And that completes this crochet tutorial for a preemie beanie. I would love to see your finished and in-process hats! You can share them on Instagram and tag me, or you can join my Facebook group and share your photos there.

Happy crocheting!

Save this for later with Pinterest!

A small red crochet hat on a white surface along with a some printed sheets of paper, a crochet hook, and a tapestry needle. A yellow panel with text reads: Crochet preemie beanie. A free tutorial from Banana Moon Studio.
A small red crochet hat on a white surface along with a some printed sheets of paper, a crochet hook, and a tapestry needle. White and purple panels with text read: Banana Moon Studio. How to crochet a preemie beanie. Free video tutorial.
A small red crochet hat on a white surface along with a some printed sheets of paper, a crochet hook, and a tapestry needle. White and purple panels with text read: Free tutorial. Crochet preemie beanie. Banana Moon Studio.
A small red crochet hat on a white surface along with a some printed sheets of paper, a crochet hook, and a tapestry needle. A white panel with text reads: Free video tutorial. Crochet preemie beanie. Banana Moon Studio.

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