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Pathways to Hope Beanie

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Hi there, friends!

Have you been following along with Christine’s of Sweet Potato 3 Patterns Crochet Cancer Challenge? There have been so many amazing beanie designs and I’m so excited for some downtime to whip some up for my local cancer center!

Back in 2015 when I was going through chemo (Stage III breast cancer survivor here, read about my story here), I made myself soooo many hats. I hated wearing my wig because it was so itchy, so I relied on hats daily. They served to keep me warm (boo to being bald in the winter!), act as “hair” in a weird sort of way, and frankly, to make me feel pretty and seen. I was always looking for new patterns to whip up for myself that were fun, interesting, and different. Plus, I have a thing for texture, obviously. So when Christine of Sweet Potato 3 opened up spots for this year’s Crochet Cancer Challenge, I was so excited to be a part of it!

2021 Cancer Challenge

What is the Crochet Cancer Challenge, you ask? Christine of Sweet Potato 3 started this wonderful challenge a couple of years ago as a way of supporting those battling this awful disease. Each day, Monday through Saturday for the whole month of October, you’ll have the opportunity to download a new PDF hat pattern with the promise that you’ll make at least one hat to give to a cancer patient or donate to your local cancer center. It’s such an amazing thing to help raise awareness and support those battling it out!

Each day, you’ll check in at Christine’s post to get the coupon code and link to the featured designer’s pattern page. From there, you’ll click the download button located within the designer’s post to take you to your Ravelry download page. Then just add the pattern to your cart, check out with the coupon code, and get to stitching!

I recommend signing up for Christine’s reminder emails on the round-up page, just to make sure you don’t miss anything! Find everything you need to know in the link below!

Update! The final counts are in! The entire event saw an unprecedented number of pledges and we couldn’t have done it without you! Thank you for supporting this cause!!

The Stitches

When I started thinking about what I wanted this hat to look like, I wanted something that would make the wearer feel pretty and seen and of course it had to have lots of texture! I also wanted something that would work up quickly for the maker and something that would provide the wearer with plenty of warmth.

This hat uses mostly stitches that I have used in previous patterns, ie the foundation single crochet and yarn over slip stitch (aka the half double slip stitch), but it also features the triple treble and a braiding technique that uses those super tall stitches. Click on any of the links in this paragraph to take you to their respective tutorials.

Yarn + Materials

A quick note on materials. If you intend to make this hat for donation to a cancer patient, I have a few things for you to consider when choosing which yarn to use. First, choose something soft. Some yarns, particularly animal blends, can be itchy, and that is not fun when you have no hair as a protective barrier. Second, make sure it is washable. Regular washing of my hats during chemo was a must because of a compromised immune system. I recommend good acrylics, cotton, rayon, bamboo, etc. Generally, they are super washer-friendly and soft, but you’ll want to double-check the care instructions on the yarn label. If you’re adding a faux fur pompom, I absolutely LOVE these pompom buttons by Savlabot. When you order them, each button comes with an instruction tag too, showing the wearer how to remove and reattach the pompom! Great not only if the wearer needs to wash the hat, but also if they just aren’t feeling very pompom-y that day. I use them on my hats as well!

Here are some yarn recommendations for this pattern. All are CYC 5 Bulky weight.

Okay then, on to the pattern!

Pathways to Hope Beanie Crochet Pattern

by Hooks, Books, & Wanderlust

Please note that this free version is written for a Fitted Teen/Adult Small, which fits a head circumference of 22″ / 56 cm. The pattern notes contain information helpful in adapting this to other sizes and lengths, OR you may purchase the PDF version of this pattern, which comes with five sizes and 2 height options: fitted and slouch.

The PDF features the written pattern, all notes and helpful tips and tricks, full-color supplemental photos, step by step photo tutorials and linked video tutorials for all special stitches and techniques, a consolidated pattern stripped down to just the row instructions for more experienced crocheters, and a handy stitch chart and row tracker.

Why the PDF?

What’s so cool about my PDF? Everything!

My interactive PDFs are written with teaching in mind, complete with photo tutorials for all special stitches (including links to videos), tips and tricks for the pattern itself or reading patterns in general, lots of photos, and charts for those visual learners out there! And best of all, everything is formatted for ease of navigation, allowing you to jump between sections of the pattern with ease!

Not a beginner? I also have a consolidated version (where applicable) of the pattern that’s printer-friendly just for you!

Get your printable PDF version of this pattern below!

Psst! A portion of the proceeds earned from sales of this PDF pattern will be donated to The American Cancer Society to help aid the fight, so thanks for helping put cancer in the past!


  • 185 yds (170m) of CYC 5 Bulky Yarn, shown in Hobby Lobby I Love This Chunky, see above for other recommended yarns.
  • 6.5mm / K crochet hook
  • Tapestry needle
  • Scissors
  • Faux fur pompom (optional) and pompom buttons (optional)


  • Chain (ch)
  • Slip Stitch (sl st)
  • Single Crochet (sc)
  • Foundation Single Crochet (FSC) – Tutorial available here!
  • 3rd Loop Only (3LO)
  • Triple Treble Crochet (trtr) – Tutorial available here!
  • Yarn Over Slip Stitch (yoslst) – Tutorial available here!
  • Braid Technique – Tutorial available here!


  • Fitted Teen/Adult Small for head circumference of 22″(56 cm).
  • This hat has a lot of stretch to it and negative ease has been added.
  • Rectangle Measurements: 19.25″ Long x 8.4″ High” (49 cm Long x 21.5 cm High) prior to seaming


4″ (10.2 cm) square = 10 sts x 11 rows of single crochet
Pattern Repeat (Unbraided) = 2.875” / 7.3 cm High
Pattern Repeat (Braided) = 1.875” / 4.75 cm High


  • This pattern is written in US Standard terms and is classified as Intermediate.
  • Size/Tension Adjustments: Increase/decrease hook size or add/subtract pattern repeats accordingly.
    • Hat Circumference: The circumference of the hat is equal to the length of the rectangle prior to seaming.  Please note that there is a significant amount of stretch to this pattern and subsequently a large amount of negative ease.
  • Adjusting Hat Height: Increase/decrease the beginning number of Foundation Single Crochets in R1 by any number of stitches.
  • Tutorials for the Foundation Single Crochet, Yarn Over Slip Stitch, Triple Treble and Braid Technique with supplemental video tutorials are linked above in the Stitches & Abbreviations section.
  • Turning Chains: Chain stitches at the beginning of rows do not count as a stitch except as indicated in triple treble/braid rows.
  • If you’d prefer a convenient, printable PDF version of this pattern, written for 5 sizes (Children 3-5 yrs, Children 6-10, Teen/Adult Small, Adult Medium, and Adult Large) with 2 height options (Fitted and Slouch), which includes in-document photo tutorials for all special stitches mentioned above (with links to video tutorials for each), as well as a helpful row tracker and a stitch chart for visual reference – available in the paid pattern only, visit my Etsy and Ravelry shops!


This pattern is worked flat in turned rows, creating a slanted rectangle (parallelogram) that will be seamed up the side and cinched together at the top to create the beanie.  Working the beanie in this manner yields a LOT of stretch.  The rectangle size given above reflects a significant amount of negative ease to account for that stretch.

Because this pattern is worked in a fixed size rectangle, the stitch counts will remain at 21 stitches throughout and no stitch counts will be given at the end of the row instructions.


R1: FSC 21.

NOTETo see a photo + video tutorial for the foundation single crochet, click here.  Alternately, if you wish to use a foundation chain, you will need to chain 22 then single crochet into the back bump of the 2nd chain from your hook and into each chain across. 

PRO TIP: Working into the back bump of a chain stitch yields a more polished edge to your work. If you’re not sure what the back bump of a chain is or how to work into it, watch this part of my Getting Started with Crochet Video.

R2: Ch 5 (counts as trtr), trtr in 2nd stitch and each across.


  • I recommend working the 5th chain of your ch-5 on the looser side, as you will need to work into it in the next row.
  • To see the photo + video tutorial for the triple treble (trtr), click here. 
  • This is the first row of our pattern repeat!

PRO TIP: When you see a note that chain stitches count as a stitch, then you would start working your row in the 2nd stitch from the previous row.  In this case, the ch-5 counts as a trtr, so the FSC at the base of that ch-5 has already been worked into by the ch-5 counted as a trtr.

PRO TIP: The words “pattern repeat” refer to the series of rows to be repeated over and over until the pattern directs you to end them.  The use of the word “repeat” here can be confusing since this is the first row of our pattern repeat and we haven’t actually repeated anything yet.  Think of the pattern repeat as a block of rows, blocks that you will build one on top of another to create your hat.  In this pattern, the pattern repeat is R2-5.

R3: Ch 1, sc in 1st stitch and each across, working the last sc in the top of the ch-5 from the previous row.

R4: Ch 1, yoslst in 1st stitch and each across.

NOTETo see a photo + video tutorial for the yarn over slip stitch, click here

R5: Ch 1, sc3LO in 1st stitch and each across.

NOTEFor help finding the 3rd loop, see the photo + video tutorial for the yarn over slip stitch here

"Find the 3rd loop of the yarn over slip stitch from the previous row and work your single crochet into it." Swatch shows the 3rd loops highlighted in blue.

That’s the first pattern repeat! At this point, you can go ahead and braid the trtr row using the braiding technique in my tutorial here.  I like to do it at the end of each pattern repeat so I have a good idea of the actual hat circumference as I go.


  • The braid will reduce the trtr row by about half its height. It’s important to check your braided pattern repeat height (R2-5) here to make sure you’re still matching the given gauge height of 1.875” (4.75cm).  If you end up being shorter, you may require additional repeats to reach the given hat circumference of 19.25″ (49cm).

R6-41: Continue repeating R2-5 for a total of 10 repeats.  Do NOT tie off when finished.

PRO TIP: You need a TOTAL of 10 pattern repeats, of which you’ve already worked 1, so you have 9 more to go!


It’s time to turn your rectangle into a hat!


When you’ve completed the last pattern repeat, fold your rectangle in half, inside out, short sides together.  Slip stitch the short sides of your rectangle together, then tie off leaving a long tail, approximately 20” (51 cm).  Then go ahead and weave in your starting tail from R1 too.


Turn your hat right side out.  With the long tail you left from sewing the seam of your hat, thread a blunt-tipped yarn needle and feed it through the center of the remaining loops leftover from your braided row.  When you’ve made it all the way around, thread the yarn through the first loop once more.  This will keep it from cinching oddly.

Pull your yarn tail tightly, cinching the top of the hat closed at the loops.  There will be gaps that still need to be closed, which we’ll do by working into the second loop of each braided row (the loop directly under the loop we just cinched through) and under the first yarn over slip stitch of those respective rows.

When you’re finished, thread the yarn tail down through the center of the top of your hat and weave it in.  Voila!

Add a pom or leave it as is!  If you’re looking to add a removable pompom, check out these buttons from Savlabot on Etsy!  They are what I use on mine and are super easy and secure!

Woohoo, you did it!! Congratulations!! I hope love your new hat and maybe make a few more to donate to your local cancer center.

I would LOVE to see your hat! Should you choose to share, use the tags #PathwaysToHopeBeanie and / or #LaBelleVieForMe to share your makes with me @HooksBooksWanderlust on Instagram and / or Facebook!

I hope you enjoyed this pattern and found it easy to follow! If not, or if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask! Email me at

Happy crocheting!

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