Learning a New Skill For Free on YouTube: Dinosaur Hats!

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dinosaur hat how to

Technology is so wonderful.  My friend has a little boy that I’ve been dying to make this hat for since I saw the pattern on Pinterest.

The pattern is only $5, and I thought that sounded pretty cheap for a hat.  Until I bought the yarn.  My fiance kept saying we should just buy a hat because the crocheted one wouldn’t be warm at all.  (His point was all those little holes.)  So I bought alpaca yarn.  Because that’s crazy warm, right?  But it was $5 a skein.  And I had two colors.  So I was at $10 plus about $3 for some needles.  I hadn’t crocheted in years, and I only knew one stitch.

So I was looking at $13 for a hat, now.  The fiance was becoming right; if I bought the pattern, too, this was going to be an expensive project.  So instead I tried to find a pattern.  While I couldn’t find a dino hat, I did find a pattern for dinosaur spikes.  And a pattern for an infant ear flap hat.  I put them together and that’s how I got the cap you see on the manikin head.

There was a small learning curve involved here.  Like I said before, I only knew one stitch, and that was the double crochet.  I only found out that was the stitch I knew after google-ing what the heck all the code inside the crochet patterns meant.  So I knew that stitch, but I still had to figure out how to do a magic loop and a single stitch if I was going to do this.  The magic loop is the hardest part, but once I discovered I could use YouTube videos to teach me the process sped up incredibly quickly.

Here’s the pattern for the earflap hat.  I actually had to add an extra row.  I think it was because I had my stitches really tight.  I didn’t want the fiance to be right about those holes.

Here’s all the YouTube video’s you’ll need if you want to try this yourself and you’re a newb like me:

Magic Ring/Loop/Circle (The good part starts around 1:20.  Like this guy because he slows it down after he shows it to you in real time.)

Single Crochet (sc)

Double Crochet (dc)

That should be all you need!  And then you’ll need to make dino spikes.  Which doesn’t use any new stitches.  You might think it looks like a mini hat when you start, but by the time you finish, when you fold them in half they’re triangles and you can just sew them on.  I got the dino spike pattern here.

Once you learn the stitches, it’s super easy.

So all this YouTubing got me thinking; what other skills can you learn for free just by watching YouTube tutorials?  As a consumer, it’s pretty awesome.  But I wonder if there are some tutors or teachers of any number of subjects out there that hate that the option is around.  Because now that I know to do it, I don’t know why I’d pay someone to teach me.  At least not with something hands-on like this.

Have you ever taught yourself something with a YouTube tutorial?  Are there any new skills you’ve been dying to learn that you may look up?

Femme Frugality

13 thoughts on “Learning a New Skill For Free on YouTube: Dinosaur Hats!

  1. Michelle @ fitnpoor.com

    Whenever I have any issue with a craft or project, I youtube it first! I’m a visual learner so the creation of video sties and the craftiness of society has helped me immensely! I seriously learned how to reupholster a chair and use our Weber grill from youtube videos!

    1. femmefrugality

      Visual learners all day! That’s so awesome that you learned how to do those things….I totally would have just given up. But you were wise to the power of YouTube, and now I am, too….(it’s not just for watching Psy videos…who knew?)

    1. femmefrugality

      Holy moly is that intense! And genius. I did some number crunching and she paid $0.12 per skein…and that’s accounting for a pretty large skein (100 yds.) I paid five bucks each. I don’t know if I could do all that work, though!

  2. Mel

    I have been using YouTube to learn the basics of AutoCAD as a brush up for an interview where I have to be able to at least claim very basic knowledge of the program (I took a course in it in college and almost changed my major to get away from it – I HATE AutoCAD). Some of the tutorials I found though are great and actually seem a lot better than the hundreds of dollars I paid for that college course way back when.

    Also, that hat is amazing and makes me want to learn how to crochet better. I can barely make a scarf as of yet.

    1. femmefrugality

      So cool! I took some AutoCAD in high school. Glad it didn’t turn you away from your profession! I’m actually looking into using YouTube for similar purposes for my fiance…job training/prep. We’ll have to see if I can find some good videos for his focus.
      You should totally try a pattern. There’s tons of free ones, and a lot of them are super simple…I was surprised! With hats you can just crochet around instead of having to chain and turn every round…in some ways it’s easier.

  3. monica

    I have learned so much about sewing from watching utube videos! There really is a wealth of info out there! I’m super impressed with that Dino pattern by the way – I would love to see the finished product!

  4. Savvy Working Gal

    I’ve used both YouTube videos and eHow for computer setup and virus removal. I am sure BestBuy’s geek squad isn’t pleased, but I’ve saved a few dollars there. I also use them to learn how to perform simple maintenance projects around the house. I don’t think I’d have the patience to use a video to learn to crochet, but you never know….

    1. femmefrugality Post author

      The Geek Squad isn’t very good at their job, anyways. Go you for figuring out all the techy stuff this way! Will have to remember it next time I run into something.

  5. Meredith

    You 100% completely wow me. Will now be waiting for the grand-opening of your Etsy shop with bated breath (you can just fill it up with hats that you make in all your excess of free time ;)). GO YOU!!!

  6. Pingback: Reevaluating Crochet Costs | Femme Frugality

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