12 Ways To Customize Knit Hats!

It’s true. There are dozens of knit hat patterns all over the internet. And I’m sure you have your favorite go-to, must-make basic hat pattern that you make over and over. You use your favorite needles and yarn weight, and you virtually know the pattern without even looking. But once in a while, you feel like you just need that little bit extra, that added touch, that’s just not included in the pattern. That’s why we’ve dreamed up some really cute ways for you to customize your knit hats.

Let’s get to it!

Customize Knit Hats While You’re Knitting

What do I mean by that? Well, many people buy the exact same color as is used in the pattern image, but guess what? You can choose any color you like in the same brand or weight of yarn! 

Yep – you have my permission! Go wild! Choose the color you really want!

Start In A Different Color, Or Just Add Rows

Try adding a cuff in a contrasting color that you can either fold over onto the outside or wear as a long slouch style. Yes, even adding length to a regular knit hat pattern can make it look different.

Add A Stripe Or Two

Nothing is stopping you from adding in another color.


Yes – go for it! Choose a crazy contrast and knit it in for a few rows, then change back to the original color, or don’t…the choice is yours! 

You could make it a rainbow knit hat if you have enough shades. Or, try shading through 4-5 colors, from dark to light or light to dark.

Fibonacci is something to think about. Have you heard the name? It’s a math thing (add two consecutive numbers to get the next number in the sequence, i.e., 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, etc.), but the reasoning behind it gives a very pleasing stripe pattern.

Change Needle Size

Here’s a thought…if you’re knitting from the bottom up, use the regular size needles for a couple of inches so you form a cuff, then switch up a few needle sizes for a looser, more slouchy body and crown.

Add A Knit Or Crochet Border

There are loads of fancy knit or crochet edgings you could add…especially on the edge of a fold-up cuff. That would make a pretty, feminine edge on a regular basic knit hat.

Add Ear Flaps And Twisted Cords Or Braids

I know I know…it may not look so cool, but man, earflaps rock when the temps drop!

And, you never know quite how hard that wind is gonna blow, so hang onto your knit hat with ties, cords, or braids. Kids look so cute in these Nordic-style earflap hats! Not to mention, they’re super warm!

Try Duplicate Stitch On A Basic Knit Hat

Link to video of how to work knit duplicate stitch. Marly Bird

If you haven’t heard of duplicate stitches, it’s a way of sewing over knit stitches to make them look like they were knitted that way in a contrasting color. 

It’s like a different way of working fair isle or a fair isle style single motif or shape in a contrasting color onto a pre-knitted hat or other piece of knitwear.

You can just make a graph of your own image that you want to transfer or search for a pattern you’d like online.

You can see how to work duplicate stitches in my video here.

Knit Hat Customizations To Sew On (Or In)

There are countless embellishments you can sew onto your handmade knit hats. Just take a walk through craft stores, or search online, and you’ll find all kinds of gizmos you can add to make your knit hats really stand out from the crowd.

Sew In A Lining

If you’re handy with a needle and thread or a sewing machine, and you live where it gets REALLY cold, you might want to make a fleece lining and sew it into your hand-knit hat! Fleece is so soft and warm as soon as you slip it on, so that would be a great option for colder climes.

Sew On PomPoms, Or Tassels

I know you’ve seen me using fur pompoms on my knit hat patterns. Don’t you think they’re cool? I love them. They really give knit hats a classy look! 

Here’s how you sew on pompoms or tassels!

You can buy fur pompoms through this link. 

Try it, I know you’ll love it!

You could also sew on a tassel to top off your hat! Tassels are fun too. You can buy some really cute tassels here, or you can make your own in whatever color you want. Just use some of your leftover yarn in the same color as your hat or in a contrasting color.

If you’re feeling inclined, you can even make your own pompoms too. Same thing as making tassels – use your leftover yarn in whatever color you fancy.

What’s stopping you from adding more than one pompom or tassel? NOTHING! 

It’s your knit hat – you embellish your knit hat your way! 

More Sew-on Ideas To Customize Knit Hats

See? I told you there were tons of ways to embellish your knit hats! Here are a few more things you can sew on to make your hats your own.


These days you can have your own tags printed or stitched. They’re usually on a strip of fabric that you can fold over the bottom edge of your knit hat and sew the ends in place. You can also find faux leather, sew-on wood tags, and screw-on removable tags too. Just adding a little tag can really change the look of a simple knit hat.


If you’re Bi-crafty – a crocheter too – you can work up motifs in whatever shape you want to add to your knit hat. There’s no rules saying you can’t mix and match crochet with knits and vice versa. 

Some great choices for sew-on hat embellishments might be:

And, If You’re Really Feeling Funky And Fun…

Knit or crochet some ears to sew onto a hat. I know…crazy, right? But it’s fun! And kids love hats with ears! Don’t they?

It could be as easy as knitting or crocheting triangles and gathering them at the base of the triangle to sew onto the top of a hat to give a feline look.

Or you could try making longer floppy dog ears made from fur yarn too! 

Think outside the box!

Use your imagination to customize knit hats in your own way!

Have some knitting fun with these other pages that might interest you!

Check out more knit hats from me, Marly Bird!

Here’s an awesome knit poppy pattern video.

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Marly Bird

The One and Only, Marly

Marly is a knitwear and crochet designer (and yarn addict) that is here to help you learn how to knit and crochet in a way that's fun and approachable.

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