beret beret!

if you read my recent post over on the threadbanger blog, beret brained!…you know i’m all about the beret at the moment. it’s definitely a continuation of everything hat-centric i’ve been blabbering about for most of this year.

in recent weeks, i have been looking all around, high, low, here, and there for the perfect beret pattern. it has not been an easy task, for i wanted something easy, basic quick to make, pretty classic, not too slouchy, and worsted-weight yarn worthy. a tall order! though the lacy, oversized or chunky ones are lovely, they weren’t *exactly* what i had in mind in my mind’s eye.

i found some promising contenders around the ye olde world-wide-web (as evidenced by the round-up i linked to in the aforementioned post)…but like goldielocks and the three bears, none of them was quite right.

however, yesterday around 3pm a tiny crafty lightbulb flickered on on above my head, and shone brightly: i know where to find a pattern for the perfect beret! it’s a pattern contained within a vintage copy of the reader’s digest complete guide to needlework, a lovely classic craft tome i thrifted ages and ages ago.

reader's digest complete guide to needlework

beret pattern in the reader's digest complete guide to needlework

i had attempted said beret yonks ago when i was first learning how to crochet (that would be way back in what, 2004??) but for some reason didn’t complete it. i’m pretty well-versed with the crocheting now, natch, and usually don’t use patterns, but now and again i like the ease of not having to work everything out myself. so armed with some super basic bright yellow wool yarn (cascade 220), i got to work. three short hours later, i had myself the beret of my “dreams”.

yellow beret

yellow beret

easy peasy.

love projects like this! nearly instant gratification.


(p.s. i am OBSESSED with yellow at the moment. orange still reigns supreme as my favorite color o’ the past several years, but yellow is a recent fling with which i am having a torrid color affair. anyone else similarly smitten with yellow??)


  1. CuteMess

    I woke up sometime last week with a random need for a bright yellow dress. I haven’t searched for it but it is still in the back of my mind. I only have a few pieces of yellow clothing, only one is a standout: a lovely retro cardigan I got at Anthropologie that is cool bright yellow with white lace appliques and brown acrylic rounded buttons. I always get comments about it when I wear it.

  2. alexis

    I know you’re not a big movie watcher, but you should look at some images from the movie “Bonnie and Clyde”. I just watched it last night. Faye Dunaway rocks a beret and some really wicked 1930s fashion in the film. Her clothes in the film are quite amazing and made the beret very popular in the late 1960s.

  3. kelly LOVES whales

    LOVE the beret. I am with you on the yellow trip, though it has been a complete surprise and utter departure for me. Out of nowhere, it grabbed me by the arm and has not let go!

  4. blingblingkitty

    Yes! I am wild about yellow. Thing is, I wasn’t a yellow “fan” for the longest time. I detested the color for awhile in my early twenties. Ugh I don’t even want to know what that says about me psychologically. In the past couple of years my love for the color just grows and grows. Love the beret. I too, am in search of that “perfect” pattern. Too bad I just can’t get the hang of crochet…someday.

  5. Sarah

    Oh yes, I love yellow! In the past year I’ve accumulated lots of yellow t-shirts, a 70’s vintage yellow sweater, a 50’s yellow sundress, and my recent and most favorite, a floor length yellow handmade 70’s prom gown! It’s very prairie-chic, and I just can’t wait to find a time to wear it.

  6. softspoken

    i’ve learned so much from that book! i’m glad i was lucky of enough to thrift it.

    and your beret looks fantastic. i’ve been feeling more of a golden yellow myself these days ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. Melissa

    Ah! I just regained that loverly book at the craft thrift! We had that growing up, and I’m glad to have it again.

    Also, I’ve been buying lots of yellow, but I think you pull it off a lot better than I do! ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. Hyena In Petticoats

    I have a copy of the same book, and I’ve used it to teach myself about a bazillion things so far…. well worth the $2 it cost me!

    The beret looks fabulous, and I’ve just spent a whole Southern Hemisphere Winter completely obsessed with yellow, so no. I don’t think you’re alone on that one. I got through the chilly months dressed almost entirely in black, white, yellow and grey. Sometimes red. Yum.


  9. Kristin

    Oh. My. God. I haven’t seen that book in ages! My mom has a copy and now I want to find out if she’s kept it after all these years:) I’m getting into knitting recently and I forgot all about that book ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks for reminding me ๐Ÿ™‚
    Also I love yellow and the beret looks fab on you. I have a beautiful vintage yellow shift dress with a layered pleated hem. It’s divine but it doesn’t fit me well. It has a tiny stain on the front so when I have more time I’m going to turn it into a skirt (which works great because I’m pear shaped and the bust is too big whereas the bottom fits my bum perfectly ๐Ÿ™‚

  10. jani

    You look smashing in that Yellow beret!
    I love berets and just ordered on on the bloomies by mail website, its big and red.
    I have been loving yellow since the summer, when I bought yellow converse with no laces. Love that true yellow color, no pale shades for us! ๐Ÿ™‚

  11. GlamaRuth

    My color obsession exactly! Tangerine, pumkin and persimmon have long been my favorite shades of orange, but yellow, which I had always considered unwearable, began creeping into my color-consiousness in fall of 06. The lemony tones don’t do much for my olive skin, but ochre has become a mainstay – including a Hayden-Harnett purse, late 60’s crocheted skater sweater and mid-60’s suede Bonnie Cashin dress – along with shots of acid yellow, most prominantly in an early 60’s wool suit with a full skirt and collarless, bracelet sleeved boxy jacket. Oddly, both pair well with cherry-colored shoes, and I love ochre with all the gray that is currently out there. Enjoy your lovely beret – the color alone warms up a drear day!

  12. TurabianNights

    My mother passed that book along to me when I was learning cross-stitch in third or fourth grade – I rediscovered it a few years ago, and it is FABULOUS. So happy to see it on the blog!

  13. Angie Montreal

    Yes, yellow is my love lately! More along the mustardy side of things for me though.

    I’m going to try to crochet a beret as well, been thinking about it since your first post. I’ll try without a pattern and hope for the best…

  14. Ally

    I LOVE yellow! I am also obsessed with hats– and they are so useful now.

    All the cocktail hats I’ve found have been out of my price range but then H&M had one which I snatched up and have been wearing.

    I just finished a tam– I can’t wait to take pictures of it.

    My mother had that book when I was a girl. I wish I had it now! I am collecting hat patterns anywhere I can find them…

  15. sanmarcosmom

    This is perfect. I have been searching for a beret pattern on the internet and not finding what I wanted……… that you mention that book, I have it on my shelf! thanks for the photos, I am inspired!