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Free Knitting Patterns: Relax with a Project

Updated on February 3, 2013
Marye Audet profile image

Marye Audet-White is an internationally known food writer, food editor for Texas Living, cookbook author, and food blogger.

Now is the time of year where things are a little slow on most homesteads. Well, as slow as they ever get. Mot of the garden is not into full production but the planting is done. Animals have birthed and it is not time for breeding. Oddly, the summer is the time to start thinking ahead to the winter.

When afternoons are too hot to do anything but sit consider working on a knitting project. Women in pioneer times did not have the option of just sitting and staring at soap operas or reading the newest Harlequin. When they wanted to take a break they worked on their sewing or fiber projects and so their families had all they needed for wintertime.

The Internet enables you to find all kinds of free projects for knitted items. Scarves, hats, shawls, sweaters and socks can all be found in a myriad of designs and variations. The only cost is the paper to print them on. If you have wanted to learn to knit starting with an easy project like a scarf is the best way to do it. Make the first one plain with only one color and one stitch and then make variations as you get better and understand the process. From there the sky is the limit and soon your family will be sporting hand knitted Fair Isle style sweaters and people will wonder where in the world you found time to do that.

Learning to Knit

The first thing you must do when learning to knit is to learn the basic techniques. Knit Purl Cast off Cast on Increase Decrease From there you can begin to branch out and practice changing colors and intricate stitch patterns. When you are ready for the intricate stitches there is a tutorial on over 100 patterns at the Library of Knitting Stitches

Knitting for Lefties

Beginner's Knitting Projects

Now that you understand how to knit you will want to begin a project. Always knit a swatch with the suggested needles and yard to make sure your gauge is the same as the instructions.

This easy knit scarf is a full six feet long and takes only one hour Knitty has this unusual pattern scarf that is both colorful and deceptively easy.

Remember the little bootie type slippers? This is an easy version with cute trim. These make great gifts, are quick to do and are perfect for those chilly winter evenings.

Some vintage shawl and wrap patterns can be found at Vintage Knitting. Many of these patterns are uncomplicated but absolutely beautiful. They can be done with a minimum of experience for the most part.

This is an easy hat and a good introduction to the use of double pointed needles. Make it in various color combinations for different members of your family.

If you have kids you have to have mittens. These are very easily done on regular needles. A quick project for beginners.

Colorful easy poncho pattern from Moda Dea



Intermediate Knitting Projects

If you want to make socks Wise Needle has an excellent site with tutorial and pattern. Any question that you could come up with has all ready been answered here!

Get used to working with circular needles when you make this hooded poncho from Lion Brand.

This colorful vest allows you to practice both unique stitch patterns and the intrelac style of knitting, which is colorful and similar to Fair Isle. This is an intermediate project for sure.

For windy days that are not cold exactly but just allow the wind to whistle through your ears try this hooded scarf.

Advanced Knitting Projects

This shawl is amazing. A light and lacy wrap to wear in the crisp autumn evenings; it is the laciest of lacy things.

Fiddlehead Mittens have a unique pattern and are colorful. The intricate detail is in the color pattern not the stitch pattern.

If you are ready for a challenge then this lace bell sleeved shrug from Knitty should keep you happy for awhile.

Getting in the habit of spending a little time every day on a project will make the project seem to finish almost by itself. Like out ancestors we lead busy lives. Like them we need to learn to take some time to relax. And, like them we can do so while still doing something worthwhile.


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    • misslong123 profile image

      Michele Kelsey 

      5 years ago from Edmond, Oklahoma

      I love the one hour scarf! Thanks for sharing the links to those great scarves. I love knitting scarves. I'm a beginner, but I really enjoy it. I look forward to following your knitting and hope you follow mine. Great job! Michele

    • johncimble profile image


      6 years ago from Bangkok

      useful! my girlfriend always wants to learn it, so will give this link for her to learn then

    • craftybegonia profile image


      7 years ago from Southwestern, United States

      Thanks for the hub! I love knitting, so many different stitches to try!

    • SharonHines profile image


      7 years ago from USA

      Thanks for the link to the one-hour scarf. That's my kind of project-- short and sweet.

    • Susan Starts Now profile image

      Susan Starts Now 

      7 years ago from California

      A wonderful collection of resources. I am always looking for new knitting projects and will be returning to browse the sites you have mentioned in your article. And whoever thinks knitting isn't cool simply isn't cool!

    • debugs profile image


      8 years ago from Odessey777, Umbris

      This is great... Maybe I'll try knitting a Starsky sweater for myself!

    • Whidbeywriter profile image

      Mary Gaines 

      8 years ago from Oak Harbor on Whidbey Island, Washington

      I love to knit and this was great....I have a link to your hub from my new cross stitch hub which I will publish today. Thanks so much for sharing this.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Those Fiddlehead Mittens are fabulous! Definitely want that pattern (although I'll use it for a sweater yoke instead....) Great resources here, great hub!

    • Garlic Angel profile image


      8 years ago from Dublin

      oh I have not knitted in years.. I use to love it and now I am thinking of taking it up again.. Thank you for reminding me of it... Love the Article, thank you for sharing it and I hope you donn't mind if I become your fan... Garlic Angel :-)

    • Journey * profile image

      Nyesha Pagnou MPH 

      8 years ago from USA

      I have just begun to learn to knit and this hub is very helpful. Thanks!

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      I have not knitted in 40 years and have forgotten how to cast off. Can someone show me.


    • fiona_33 profile image


      8 years ago from UK

      Fab hub, I love to knit. It's not the coolest thing in the world to do, but I don't care!

    • KoffeeKlatch Gals profile image

      Susan Hazelton 

      8 years ago from Sunny Florida

      Great online sources. Great varity of selections. Thanks for a great hub.

    • heart4theword profile image


      8 years ago from hub

      Appreciate you sharing the sites! Never heard or seen the Vintage Knitting site, looks pretty good. There are something's where older is better:) Love the Vintage Styles, they had so much class to them! Great Hub:)

    • profile image

      RE Jewelry 

      8 years ago

      Awesome resources!! Love your Hub!

    • daisyjae profile image


      8 years ago from Canada

      Very informative!

    • Blogging Erika profile image

      E L Danvers 

      8 years ago from Ventura, CA

      Excellent round-up of online resources! And let's not forget - I don't know how I ever knit without it!

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      WHere are the Goth knit patterns as listed by the website?


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