Monday, January 31, 2011


I have long hair, and I’ve decided to grow my bangs out. They just haven’t looked as good as I’d like for a few months. About the only way to grow one’s bangs out at all gracefully is to wear hairbands, but I have a problem.

I have a fat head.

On top of that, my head is really pressure sensitive. Oh, it’s not changing weather that gives me a headache, it’s anything squeezing my head that does it. It’s instant - I can feel the headache coming on within a minute of putting on too small sunglasses, which is all of them. I can’t use headphones that are connected to a band, only the ones that clip over your ears individually. (Earbuds are excruciating to me, too, so they’re no help.)

So buying hairbands is hard for me. Most of them are too small, which means they squeeze me into an instant headache. Sometimes I can stretch them out enough that they work for a while, but doing so inevitably pops some of the stitches, and they don’t last long after that.

Clearly, the solution is to make my own. Clearly I have to make them using my most recently acquired crafting skills, in this case, knitting. Clearly I can’t follow someone else’s pattern, because then it wouldn’t be all about me, and I would seem less cool as I told you all about how I did it.

Tell me, do I seem narcissistic, or am I really that good? ;)

Design Notes: The sizing for Narcissity is determined by actual length, rather than by stitch gauge. (You’ll need to keep a ruler or measuring tape handy.) It can be made in any yarn with needles appropriate to the yarn, however, the thickness of the yarn will determine the width of the band. Sock yarn will produce a very narrow band. A thick-and-thin yarn will give you an uneven band. A band made from bulky yarn will serve as an ear warmer, too.

A yarn with some elasticity will fit and stay on your head better than 100% cotton, linen, or silk.

You should be able to get at least two Narcissity hairbands, possibly more, from one average sized ball or skein of most yarns.

The main decoration in Narcissity is a simple 2x2 cable, so you’ll need a cable needle, as well. This is a good project for your first attempt at cabling since the cable is so simple, and the project is small enough to not be heartbreaking if it doesn’t come out well the first time.

NB: I don’t care for the purl bump that the standard knit-front-and-back gives, especially in a project this small where every detail makes a difference. I have discovered that knitting the back loop first, then the front loop, gives me a smooth front surface, with the increase looking more like natural growth than cut-and-paste. The notation I have used for this increase is kbf.

Terms and Stitches Used:
co = cast on
RS = right side (front of fabric)
WS = wrong side (back of fabric)
stockinette = fabric that shows only knit stitches on the right side of the fabric. When working back and forth on flat fabric, this means that you will alternate rows of knit and purl stitches.
k = knit
p = purl
kbf = knit back and front (see NB above)
p2tog = purl two together

If you don’t know how to perform any of the stitches, just do a search for them on Google or another search engine. There are lots of good tutorials for knitting on the web. Searching for “knit front and back” should help you understand my “knit back and front.”

Measurements are given in inches. To convert to metric, remember that one inch is approximately equal to 2.5 centimetres.



Co 4.
Work in stockinette for 6”, finishing with wrong side (WS) row.


Row 1:(RS) k1, kbf twice, k1 (six stitches)
Row 2:(WS) purl across.
Row 3: k2, p2, k2
Row 4: p2, k2, p2
Row 5: k1, kbf, p2, kbf, k1 (eight stitches)
Row 6: p2, k1, p2, k1, p2
Row 7: k2, p1, k2, p1, k2
Row 8: repeat row 6
Row 9: k1, kbf, p1, k2, p1, kbf, k1 (ten stitches)
Row 10: p2, k2, p2, k2, p2
Row 11: k2, p2, k2, p2, k2
Row 12: repeat row 10
Row 13: k2, p2, kbf twice, p2, k2 (twelve stitches)
Row 14: p2, k2, p4, k2, p2


Measure the length of your Increase Section. Subtract this length from 20 inches. Work Rows 15 through 18 until your Increase and Main Sections combined measure this amount, or as close as you can get, finishing with Row 17.

Row 15: k2, p2, slip next two stitches from left needle onto cable needle, and bring to front of work. K next 2 stitches on left needle. Return stitches from cable needle to left needle, and knit them. P2, k2.

Row 16: p2, k2, p4, k2, p2
Row 17: k2, p2, k4, p2, k2
Row 18: repeat row 16


Row 19: p2, k2, p2tog twice, k2, p2 (ten stitches)
Row 20: k2, p2, k2, p2, k2
Row 21: p2, k2, p2, k2, p2
Row 22: k3, p1, k2, p1, k3
Row 23: p1, p2tog, k1, p2, k1, p2tog, p1 (eight stitches)
Row 24: k2, p1, k2, p1, k2
Row 25: p2, k1, p2, k1, p2
Row 26: k3, p2, k3
Row 27: p1, p2tog, k2, p2tog, p1 (six stitches)
Row 28: k2, p2, k2
Row 29: purl across
Row 30: knit across
Row 31: p1, p2tog twice, p1 (four stitches)


Work in stockinette for 6”. Bind off. Block as needed, but leave the ties alone to curl.

Thanks go to Rogue at Rogue Knits for testing my first ever knit pattern. You rock, Girlfriend!


  1. i don't knit (i'm a crocheter) but oh my goodness, everything you said about being sensitive to things around your head - ME TOO!! Just a "Hey, you're not the only one" comment. :)

    Adding you to my feed reader.

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. As I was saying, before I so rudely interrupted myself:

    Thanks for stopping by, Maka. I also crochet, have for much longer than I've been knitting. There are a couple crochet posts in the archives, and I've got another one in the works for April. :)

  4. This is a gorgeous headband! I am growing my bangs out, too and hate anything too constrictive on my head. I will be casting on for this today, once I figure out which yarn I want to use.

  5. Thanks, Dori and MyCreativeSpirit. Let me know how it goes! :)