So I tried size 7 needles on thicker yarn and it was still to small, so I made a huge jump and went to size 11 needles and it came out to big. I love the yarn so I'm going to be making swatches today. For the first time ever. I usually guess and can come at least close enough so that I know what I have to do but it's not working for this hat. So I understand why swatches are needed now.