Pattern Re-release: The Bryanston Beret

One of my plans for this year, along with releasing a backlog of patterns from the summer onwards, is to upgrade and re-release some of my older patterns. Some have been withdrawn awaiting significant re-working, others just need an update in formatting and some extra size options. For example, my Wraparound Eyelet Shawlette is currently being re-written with 2 larger size options.

The first pattern to have received this re-write and upgrading is my Bryanston Beret, previously known as the Brioche Beanie Beret.

Back in 2011, I designed the original hat because I wanted a slouchy beret that would showcase the great colours that hand dyers were developing for sock yarn, often with single skein shawls in mind. The design that emerged had the added bonus of not needing very much of a striking contrast yarn to make an impact. As such it was perfect for leftovers of a favourite yarn.

I knitted up several of these when first designing the pattern and they’ve been a firm favourite in my wardrobe since. However, the more I wore my versions of the hat, the more I appreciated the texture on the reverse side of the work. This led me to develop the ‘inside out’ version which, like the original,  also allowed me to play with some lovely hand dyed yarns and develop another version of the pattern that was also perfect for those tiny leftovers of truly special yarns.

This time I used stripes semi solid yarns that really accentuate the waffley texture of the stitch pattern.

All these samples were knitted in Old Maiden Aunt Shetland 4 ply – I love this worsted spun shetland wool and Lilith’s colours.

I also decided to rename the pattern for its re-release. It was previously names the Brioche Beanie Beret because it could be blocked into a beanie or beret shape and it uses a variation of knitting into a stitch below that is characteristic of one form of Brioche knitting. However, as brioche has become increasingly popular, the popularity of ‘yarn over’ brioche a la Nancy Marchant, Stephen West and Andrea Mowry  has become more popular than the knit below variation of Elise Duvecot for example. These two different ways of working brioche produces a fabric of different gauge/bounce, a characteristic that Olga Buraya-Kefelian has used to great effect through combining both methods in a single project, for example. Moreover this pattern asks you to go into the back of the stitch below rather than through the stitch from front to back. So all this is by way of suggesting that using ‘brioche’ in the name of the beret may be regarded as a little misleading as this type of fabric is not what most people will bring to mind when thinking of brioche, and it uses an uncommon variation on a brioche stitch.

So why the ‘Bryanston Beret’?  Well, I like the alliteration and Bryanston is a village neighbouring the one in which I grew up. I have fond memories of walking along the river to Bryanston with childhood friends and building camps in the woods between our two villages. Even now when we go back to visit family we generally walk the dogs along the river.

The Technical Details

Small – To fit 19 in / 48cm – Actual Size – 17in / 43cm
Medium – To fit 21in / 53cm – Actual Size – 19in / 48cm
Large – To fit 23in / 58.5cm – Actual Size – 21in / 53cm

Yarn Requirements

Original Version

The original version is knitted in just 2 colours as shown and the following is sufficient for any of the 3 sizes:

1 x 50g (200yds/183m) Old Maiden Aunt Shetland 4 ply shown in Midnight Owl (main Colour)

1 x 50g (200yds/183m) Old Maiden Aunt Shetland 4 ply shown in Red Velvet (Contrast Colour)

Alternatively if you are substituting or have part skeins you will require the following to work the pattern as given.

Small = Main Yarn = 120yds/110m Contrast Yarn = 30yds/27.5m
Medium – Main Yarn = 132yds/121m Contrast Yarn = 32yds/30m
Large – Main Yarn = 146yds/134m Contrast Yarn = 36yds/33m

You will require extra yarn if you wish to add depth to the body of the hat. The yarn requirements for the Inside Out version below can be used as a guide; each body colour is sufficient to work 8 rounds.

Inside Out Version

This version uses more colours as and the table below gives full breakdowns so you can use leftovers:

Brim – 28yds/27m
For each of the 7 body stripes – 12yds/11m
Crown – 28yds/27m

Brim -34yds/32m
For each of the 7 body stripes -16yds/15m
Crown – 34yds/32m

Brim – 40yds/37m
For each of the 7 body stripes – 20yds/15m
Crown – 40yds/37m

Full instructions are provided in case you want to add extra depth or slouch


This pattern is available for £3.75 for immediate download from my Ravelry Store (you don’t have to be a member to purchase via Ravelry)

“A great pattern. Easy enough to go quickly; interesting enough to be fun. The pattern is subtle and lovely”

(Pattern feedback from AlsoJanet on Ravelry)

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