Halloween is around the corner, and our local community is having a bash. Last year, our good friend and neighbor took home the top prize as Shrek. But this year, I think we can scare up some stiff competition. Yes. Puns. I know. It’s a curse. 😉
Tom and I decided on the original Star Wars theme, with my 6’4″ husband as Princess Leia. “No problem,” I thought. I mean, seriously. I go through winter looking like Han Solo anyway, wearing boots, jeans and a vest: all I need is my toy blaster. (Which I did purchase, and it makes noise, and I am happier than a five-year old boy.)
But, the Princess Leia costume. What to do? I tried making the robe out of a sheet with a 40+ year old sewing machine, pinking shears and super glue. It is a costume befitting a sad angel, but it will work….especially with the pièce de résistance: THE BUNS.
I tried ordering the Princess Leia wig, which was nice, but clearly sized for someone much smaller than Tom. Then I ran across this adorable Princess Leia crochet beanie from Olivia at Hopeful Honey. But while adorable, it is sized for toddlers. Her blog and beautiful photography inspired me to create a man-sized version of a Princess Leia beanie for Tom, one that can be easily sized up or down.
I doubled the yarn and made a simple double-crochet beanie that worked up in less than an hour – really! Then I created bun braids and attached them. It is all very intuitive. I’ve included a few tips that made the process a little easier along the way.
I am thinking that this fortified beanie may have life beyond Halloween too….I foresee these bad-ass buns invoking The Force when snow-blowing season comes along, don’t you?
Here’s the pattern. I think they will be a lot of fun at the party, win or lose!
ADULT PRINCESS LEIA BEANIE
This pattern is also available for a FREE download in my Ravelry Store.
12” Beanie (at Base), 4 1⁄2” Buns
WHAT YOU’LL NEED
- 1 skein Brown Yarn, 350 yards
I used “I Love This Yarn” in brown from Hobby Lobby. It was only $3.99 (and 30% off) – can’t beat the price point for a Halloween wig!
- Size M/ 15 Hook
- Darning Needle
DC – Double Crochet
CH – Chain
FPDC – Front Post Double Crochet
BPDC – Back Post Double Crochet
SLST – Slip Stitch
DC DECR – Double Crochet Decrease
METHOD – BEANIE
It may seem like a lot of steps, but the pattern is just repeated rows of double crochets with increases, a couple of static rows, then a couple of rows with decreases, and front post/ back post edging. Really!
Roll a ball about the size of a grapefruit or medium-sized orange. You’ll be doubling your yarn.
- Make a magic circle. CH 2 (does not count as a stitch here and throughout the pattern). Then DC 8. SLST and join. (8 stitches)
If you need help, click on the link for the tutorial. The magic circle is life-changing when it comes to making beanies. You don’t wind up with a hole on top. (Well, maybe not life changing, but definitely easier.)
- CH2. DC2 in each stitch around. SLST and join. (16 stitches)
- CH2. *DC2 in next stitch. DC 1 in next stitch.*
Repeat from* around. SlSt and join. (24 stitches)
- CH2. *DC in next 2 stitches. DC 2 in next stitch.*
Repeat from* around. SlSt and join. (32 stitches)
- CH2. *DC2 in next stitch. DC in next 3 stitches.*
Repeat from* around. SlSt and join. (40 stitches)
- CH2. *DC in next 4 stitches. DC 2 in next stitch.*
Repeat from* around. SlSt and join. (48 stitches)
- CH2. DC in each stitch around. SlSt and join. (48 stitches)
- Repeat step 7. (48 stitches)
- Ch2. DC next stitch. DC DECR next stitch. DC in next 43 stitches. DC DECR next stitch. DC next stitch. (46 stitches)
- CH2. DC in each stitch around. SlSt and join. (46 stitches)
- CH2. Alternate FPDC, BPDC for the round, tie off and fasten. (46 stitches)
METHOD – BRAIDS
- Cut 36 strands of yarn that are 48″ long.
TIP: Find something in your house that you can use to wrap the yarn: a board, or a small table, perhaps. I used my oven door handle. Wrap the yarn 36 times then cut both ends. It makes the process go much faster!
- Tie one end of all strands together – like a long ponytail.
- Separate the ponytail into 3 sections of 12 strands of yarn.
- Braid the tail. Tie the bottom of the tail.
- Cut each “fringe” end to about 1 1/2 – 2″ in length.
- Repeat process for a second braid.
NOTE: This process yielded two braids of about 31″ in length.
METHOD – BUNS
- Do one coil on the first braid with the fringe-side facing you. Thread the tapestry needle with a long piece of yarn (at least 20″). Start stitching the back-side of the braid with an overhand stitch.
- Repeat step 1 with the second coil.
- Repeat again with the third coil. Tuck the other fringe-end with the first, inside the bun.
- Tie off, pull through ends to the back-side of the coil.
- Repeat with second coil.
NOTE: This method allows you to achieve the classic “earmuff” look of Princess Leia’s braids. The extra fringe acts as filler when coiled and stitched to the hat.
METHOD – ASSEMBLY
- Put on the beanie, then hold a coil up to your head.
I figured the easiest way to do this was to put on the beanie and then hold one braided coil on my ear, for placement. The bottom of the coil should be at the bottom of the beanie.
- Cut a long piece of yarn (at least 20-30″) and thread the tapestry needle. Follow the pattern of the outer braid to stitch the coil to the beanie.
- Repeat steps 1 and 2 with the second coil.
Weave in all remaining ends.
Can you believe that you made a Princess Leia beanie today? I couldn’t believe it either. How can something so utterly nonsensical feel so productive? Enjoy your new beanie, and go WIN every costume contest that you enter. And, most of all, have fun!
Note: If you click through the links and buy a toy blaster (you won’t regret it) or the Princess Leia wig, I may receive a small amount of compensation from Amazon at no additional cost to you. That said, I don’t mention anything I wouldn’t use. Learn more here.