I knitted 9 hats in 14 days, and added one from my stash to make it to 10.  

1.  Use yarn already owned.
2.  Make up own patterns (no copyright issues).
3.  Knit fast.
4.  Stay interested: change up patterns, use bits of new techniques, etc.

1.  I used bulky weight yarn in gender-neutral colors.  I used size 11 on a couple then moved to 10.5's for the remainder.  I used Paton Shetland Chunky and Michael's store brand, Loops & Threads in Charisma for the yarns.
2.  Two pairs of hats are very similar.  They are actually 10 separate patterns technically.  
3.  Knitted fast several days.  :-) 60-64 stitches usually in each row.  
4.  Learned & practiced color work (wide stripes & mosaic), rolled edges, & shaping.

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My church congregation hosted an Angel Tree for a local agency.  For reasons I still do not understand, I decided to knit 10 hats instead of buying them.  I know that hats are widely available for $1 and up.  Mine are prettier, bigger, and filled with more love.  Besides,

"Saruman believes it is only great power that can hold evil in check, but that is not what I have found. I found it is the small everyday deeds of ordinary folk that keep the darkness at bay. Small acts of kindness and love. Why Bilbo Baggins? Perhaps because I am afraid, and he gives me courage."
My mind stayed creative.  My hands stayed busy.  Not all the hats are great.  I'm really good at shaping the hat now.  Better with colorwork.  Learned a new technique (Mosaic knitting).  And I gave back a little bit, lighting a few candles in the darkness.  I did most of my knitting while I was waiting for kids, waiting for something else (car), or late at night.  

I quickly learned I did not need my whole knitting tool kit, just a small one:

I knitted on size 11 16-inch circular needles (2-3 hats), then changed to 10.5 needles.  I knitted the tops of the hats on 10 double pointed needles.  I tried magic loop on one hats, but I was too slow.   Other than that, I needed needles for weaving in, a cable needle, small scissors, and stitch markers.  

The LineUp

Hat #1: Red Ribbed
Bad shaping - too wide. Squatty.  

Hat #2: Black
First rolled edge.  Started this at the Salt Lake Kos meet-up.  Started this on magic loop w/ wooden needles, too slow.  Maybe rolled edge needs fewer stitches?

Hat #3:  Multi-Blue
Bad shaping - too wide.  Decreased too fast, I think.  

Hat #4:  Tan
Added a purl stitch on a rotating basis.  Was trying for a spiral ribbed effect, I think the yarn was too bulky for my idea.  

Hat #5: Multi-Blue & Tan

Hat #6:  Stripes
Fun shape: I knitted to the end of the tan, almost the end of the red.  Had trouble with color changes, stitched up that colum a lot.

Hat #7:  Red Rolled

Hat #8:  Red Cabled
This one was very tight from one little 4-stitch cable!  

Hat #9:  Green
Purled every 6th row.  

Hat #10:  Green & Red
The bottom colorwork is wrong, but this was my third try at this, so I left it.  I think I did it right on the top.  There are some secrets to this Mosaic stuff.  

All of the tops are cute, I love the top shapings:

So much texture in #4!  

I did not decrease in pattern, to accommodate the very special shaping for the cable.  And it didn't matter and still looked great! #8.

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