This pattern for helmet liners, also known as "wool pulleys" for soldiers was provided by Linda Swinford of Auburn, Illinois. The original pattern is by Bonnie Long and appears here along with modifications made at the request of soldiers who have received the liners.
Note: this pattern used to be used for donations to soldiers through Citizen Sam, which sent the liners to the military. But I've learned that the group is no longer accepting helmetliners for the troops apparently because of new rules. The project is not mentioned on the Citizen Sam site any longer.
These helmetliners would be great even for people who don't wear helmets, though, especially those who live or work outside.
Knitting Instructions for Wool Helmet Liners
Cascade 220 or any soft wool yarn that will knit to gauge. Approx. 175 yards (5 hanks of 220 will make 6 hats).
Size 8 - 16" circular needle, or size to get gauge, same size double point needles, and Size 6 - 16" circular needles for the ribbings.
One stitch marker.
Gauge: 4.5 st/in. in st st.
Neck: With smaller circular needle, cast on 84 stitches loosely. Place marker. Join in round and knit 2x2 rib for 6 inches.
To make hat portion: With larger circular needle, knit 32 stitches off smaller needle. Leave smaller circular needle in rest of the stitches. Cast on 59 additional stitches, place marker to mark beg of round, join in round, K even for 4".
1st dec row: *K 11, K 2 tog*, repeat to end of round.
Next row: Knit even.
2nd dec row: *K 10, K 2 tog*, repeat to end. Next row: Knit even. Change to DP needles when necessary.
Continue decreases as established until K2, K2 tog. After this, decrease every row until 7 stitches on needles. Cut yarn 8-9" long, feed through remaining stitches and weave in.
*Ribbing around face: With smaller needle still in neck portion, PU stitches around face. Join in circle and K in 2x2 rib for 2 inches. On first row of ribbing, decrease several stitches one inch before and after angle where neck attaches to face. Last row of ribbing, decrease in every other set of purl stitches by P2 tog. This will pull the ribbing in close to the face. BO in ribbing and work in tail. BO around face can be snug.
Designed by Bonnie Long, Knit Wits, 3419 Chatham Rd., Springfield, IL 62704. 217/698-6100. Revised 1/19/05. All rights reserved. Copies may be made only for the purpose of donating helmets to our active service personnel. In any case design attribution must remain.
*REVISION FOR RIBBING AROUND FACE: Based upon feedback from soldiers, please use these instructions entirely rather than those given above for ribbing around face.
With smaller needle still in neck portion, PU stitches around face. Join in circle and K in 2x2 ribbing for 1 inch. On last row of ribbing, decrease in 8 sets of purl stitches by P2tog (4 sets on each side of face, i.e. 10:00, 2:00, 4:00 and 8:00). This will pull the ribbing in close to the soldier's face. BO in ribbing and work in tail. BO around face can be snug.