Materials: Soft acrylic yarn, worsted weight (such as Caron Simply Soft):
- autumn orange and pale yellow, ~1.5 oz each?
- deep red, ~1 oz
- 16 inch circular needle, size 7
- second size 7 circular needle (or size 7 DPNs)
- 4 stitch markers
- pom-pom maker or two circles of cardboard
- yarn needle
Using orange yarn, cast on 96 stitches, placing marker every 24 stitches. Join without twisting. Work 6 rounds in garter stitch (K 1 round, P 1 round, repeat). Work in stockinette until piece measures 3.5 inches high.
Switch to yellow yarn. Work in stockinette for 1.5 inches, then begin first decrease round: K2tog, K 10, repeat around (8 repeats). K 2 rows. K2tog, K 9, repeat around. K 2 rows. Continue in this pattern until 48 stitches remain, switching to DPNs or 2 circulars when work becomes too small for the 16" circular.
K2tog, K 4, repeat around. K2tog, K 3, repeat around. K2tog, K 2, repeat around; 24 stitches remain. K2tog around. Cut yarn, leaving an 18" tale. Thread yarn through remaining stitches twice.
Switch to red yarn. At the base of the hat, turn up garter stitch brim. Find the place where cast on was joined -- this will be the hat's center back. Place markers 3 inches to each side of center back.
Beginning at one marker, pick up and knit 20 stitches from just inside the turned up edge. Work in stockinette until the flap measures 2" long. K2tog, K to last 2 stitches, K2tog. P2tog, P to last 2 stitches, P2tog. Repeat until 6 stitches remain. K2tog across; 3 stitches remain. K across or I-cord until tie reaches desired length (2" for decorative ties; 8" or longer if want to tie them), then cut yarn, leaving a 12" tail. Thread yarn through remaining stitches.
Repeat with the second flap.
Using all three yarn colors, make a pom-pom for the top and if desired, tassels for the ties. You can use the hanging tails to bind the pom-pom and tassels as well as to sew them on.
Weave in ends, and your hat is done!