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How To Estimate Size For Crochet Hats

 I do not know where I acquired this information.
I have had it written down in an old notebook for many, many years.
I am posting this with the hope it may help others as it has helped me.

I do not claim to be the author of this information and will gladly remove it if it offends anyone.  This information should not be considered absolute but merely an aid to determine a beginning point when making crochet hats

Head Circumference 13" - 14 "
Hat Circumference = 11.5" - 13"
Hat height = 5.5 to 6"
Baby - 3 to 6 months
Head Circumference: 14" - 17 "
Hat height= 6.5 - 7"
Baby - 6 to 12 months
Head Circumference: 16" - 19 "
Hat height = 7.5"
Toddler -12 months - 3 years
Hat height = 8"
Head Circumference: 18" to 20 "
Child - 3 - 10 years
Hat height =8.5"
Head Circumference: 19" - 20 1/2"
Hat height 9-10"
Head Circumference: 20 1/2" - 22"
Adult Woman
Head Circumference: 21.5" - 22.5"
Adult Man
Head Circumference: 23" - 24"

There are a few ways to adjust the size of a hat.
1. A larger or smaller hook
2. Adding more stitches to the increase rounds.
3. Yarn weight, baby, worsted or chunky.
You can gauge your individual crochet tension by crocheting a swatch of the chosen yarn in the stitch you will be using.  It should be approximately 4 x 4 inches.  Measure how many rows and how many stitches are in the 4 inches. If you are getting more rows and more stitches in the 4 inch swatch than what the pattern gauge is, that means your hat is going to be to small or tight.
If you follow the pattern materials closely (Hook size, yarn size), your hat should come close to the measurements.

For Children: The head grows to almost 80 per cent of the adult size during the child's first year.  For hat sizing, head measurement is more important than the child's age.

I do not recommend this for young infants, but measuring the head size is not really all that hard.   You can use a sewing tape measure or if you don’t have one of those, use a length of string that you can later measure with a ruler to determine the length. 

Place the string or tape around the head about 1/8 inch above the ear, across the mid-forehead, completely circling the head.  Do not wrap down at an angle toward the base of the neck.  The tape or string should be horizontal (like a desk top) around the head.  Hold the tape firmly, but not too tightly.

As always with size, results depend on the pattern chosen, the crochet tension of the artist as well as the size of the hook and weight of the yarn.  A test swatch is always helpful when size is critical or a concern.

The following link is the best site I have found for explaining how to properly fit a hat, including international size conversions.
She appears to have made a science of it so I hope this will help.


  1. Thanks for sharing this info. I have just started to crochet and am a bit daunted. I have a large range of head sizes to cater for and this has made me eager to have a go at some hats for my adult sons who keep asking for some that fit as the shop bought ones they have been given all seem to be too small. Fingers crossed I can manage it.

  2. I also have a wide range of head sizes to deal with, one rather large, that no “store bought” hat seems to fit. Since he is an adult male, I use a US size J hook and my “earflap hat” pattern, but when I finish row 10, I do not continue to make the neckband and earflaps. Instead I just continue on for 4 or 5 more rows. These hats are very stretchy and “draw up” when pulled from side to side so the longer length helps accommodate a larger head. And if the finished hat is too long it can still be rolled up into a cuff. There are many wonderful free hat patterns on the Red Heart Yarn website.

    Secret for making hats: A humans eyes are in the center of their head. Now I know what you are thinking and yes they are at the “top” of your face BUT they are still at the center of the head. Trust me on this one. So if you want to make a hat fit, measure around the head at the eyebrow level. Keep the tape horizontal like you are measuring the equator of the earth and do not go down around the base of the head to the neck. If the person does not live close to you have someone use a piece of string or ribbon (that does not stretch) and wrap it the same way. Then cut the string where the ends meet and mail it to you. When you measure the hat, lay it flat in a relaxed state and measure it at the open edge. So if it measures 12 inches it will fit a 24 inch head. You might also wish to measure it from top to bottom for depth as I find depth does make a difference in fit with this style hat.

    You can do this and I know everyone will soon feel the warmth of your love. Handmade is from the heart.

    Thank you Dorie

  3. Hj Ideal Desilusions: Thanks a lot for the informationof the size of the hats. It is very useful for mt. Thanks again. Angelica.

  4. More stitches and rows indicates it would be tighter? My brain must not be working right. I thought it would be larger. I am gonna try in my head to get this figured. Thank u so much for ur info. I love the Caron Super soft yarn and I find it hard to gauge when I make a different hat. The coats and Clark makes a huge hat. I realize it is the yarn size. Guess I will do my crochet 4 x 4 swatch. I have never done that. Might be my problem

    1. The gauge tells you how many rows and stitches you need for the desired size.
      If you need more rows and more stitches to accomplish the swatch it means the yarn is to thin, or the hook is too small or both.
      If you need less rows and less stitches to accomplish the swatch it means the yarn is to thick or the hook is too big or both.
      You can use different yarns and hook sizes but you must adjust the pattern number of stitches and rows to accomplish the desired size.
      Try two different swatches with different hooks and yarn an notice the difference.

  5. I usually make hats that are done in rounds. Would I still measure the same way laying down flat and if it is 8" I would double it?

  6. That is exactly what I do. I lay it flat in a relaxed condition then I measure the width of the open edge and double the number to get head size. If it has a roll up cuff and I want to be sure it will be comfortable I make it a bit longer because the height will appear to shorten in a side to side stretch.

  7. I believe credit for the hat size chart (and more) goes to Bev at http://www.bevscountrycottage.com/size-chart.html

    1. I have just reviewed the hat size chart at Bev’s Country Cottage and her chart is different and a great deal more detailed therefore better than mine.
      I am not the author of the chart as I copied it from a Crochet Magazine, back in the 1960’s, the title which has since been long forgotten.
      Before the days of computers I kept all my patterns and notes in a 3-ring binder. I am now transferring these notes from handwritten to digital media.
      The reason I posted my notes on hat sizes is because the basic information remains the same regardless of the source.
      Thank you for your comment.

  8. Thank you so much for this valuable information. Is there a pattern available for the white hat pictured above? Please and Thank you.

    1. The hats pictured on this blog are all made with the free basic hat pattern found on this blog. Thank you for asking. This is the link. http://idealdelusions.blogspot.com/p/basic-earflap-hat_30.html thanks for your comment. Dorie

  9. Hat sizes measuring guide. Measure your head for the perfect hat with the help of the hat size chart, including international size conversions.

    1. I just tried that link and (after letting Chrome translate from Russian to English, it said the site is blocked by the provider.

      How were you able to view it?


    2. I am sorry. I tried the link from my computer in both Russian and English and it worked for me. If the side was blocked by the provider that would be the site itself, or perhaps your virus protection. I have found the site to be safe and I have strong virus protection. I don't know how to help you with that as I have no explanation.

    3. Robin I did find another link, with a size chart that may work for you. I hope this helps http://thecrochetcrowd.com/crochet-hat-sizes-reference-guide/