Crocheting kippot (the plural of ‘kippah’) is a creative and enjoyable art. With relatively little practice, you can create beautiful and original kippot.
There are infinite possibilities for designing a pattern for a kippah. All you need is some graph paper and colored pens. Once you have made up a pattern, keep a copy of it.
If you want your patterns to come out really sharp and clear, use heavy-duty thread. You do not have to be overly concerned with brand names.
The smaller the needle, the tighter and firmer-holding your kippah will be. A size ten (3.25mm) or 12 (2.75mm) is suitable for beginners. For some of the more intricate patterns you may need a size 15 (2.0mm). DMC Perle 8 cotton is a popular choice for the thread to use to crochet a kippah, and Vogg also have a similar thread available which works well to crochet kippot.
Start with five single chain stitches and then loop them into a circle. Beginning with too many chain stitches will cause a big hole in the center.
- Once you have your circle, continue crocheting around and around. Although you can do the kippah in double crochets, if you want it really firm, always use a single crochet. The pattern must be done in single crochet or it will be blurry.
- In the first row, increase once for every stitch you crochet. For the second and third rows, increase once every other stitch. For the fourth and fifth rows, increase every third stitch. Increasing after that point will depend upon how tight you crochet.
- There is no universally recognised size for kippot. Let the person who will be wearing the kippah determine the size.
If you are putting a pattern around the edge of the kippah, do not make any increase stitches in the pattern (it is a good idea to plot out the pattern on graph paper beforehand). The pattern is usually 10-12 rows high – do not make it higher than this or the shape of the kippah will be distorted and it will be unsuitable to wear. After completing the pattern, crochet one row in the base colour of the kippah before finishing off.
- Press the finished kippah with a steam iron, using plenty of steam. This step is especially important if your kippah has a pattern around the edge. However, make sure your kippah is clean before pressing it – if necessary, wash and dry it before pressing.
- The most important thing to keep in mind is the personal taste and style of the person for whom you are making the kippah. A kippah lasts a long time and is supposed to be enjoyed.
The Complete Guide to Yarmulka Design (‘Yarmulka’ is an alternate name for a kippah)