Knitted Cotton and Microfiber Dishcloths
Dishcloth in the Making
"These dishcloths are so easy to make, and work so well, I will never use another 'store-bought' dishcloth again."
I happened upon this dishcloth pattern about 6 or 8 years ago, in a delightful needlework shop, The Needlecraft Center, in the small and charming college town of Davidson, NC. I use it to make knitted cotton and microfiber dishcloths. The pattern was worked into a baby blanket with silky soft chenille-type yarn. As I was looking at it, the shop's owner approached me and said, "That pattern is so easy, and it makes great dishcloths, too. You just make it smaller." Unfortunately, after 50 years in business, the shop has closed.
Actually, for dishcloths, it needed to be a lot smaller. I have decided it would also make a good afghan, if you don't mind having a square-shaped afghan. This pattern is so simple, I can make a knitted dishcloth in a couple of hours -- really -- in about 2 hours. Most recently, I made red ones and green ones for use during the Christmas holidays. These dishcloths are really fun to make, and I have turned out lots of them.
The Only Knitting Stitches and Abbreviations You Will Need for This Pattern
This is a Good Project for Beginning Knitters
You need to know only these three stitches and their abbreviations:
K = knit
YO = yarn over
K 2tog = knit 2 together
The pattern that emerges when every row is knitted (no purling) is called "garter stitch".
You Can Have Your Own Handmade Microfiber or Cotton Dishcloths
This one is done in black microfiber yarn. My experience has been that the microfibers don't fade, compared to the 100% cotton yarns that can fade over time.
Both are quite absorbent and work just fine. The microfiber seems to dry more quickly. I love my handmade dishcloths. You will love them, too.
An Up-close View of the Stitches - You can see the body of the cloth is just a straight garter stitch.
This light blue dishcloth is viewed on the diagonal, showing a better view of the stitches. The pattern is worked on the diagonal, that is, beginning with only 4 stitches cast on, then by adding one stitch per row, until the desired width is reached. Then the rows are decreased by one stitch per row until there are only 4 stitches left.
A Dishcloth In the Making
Here's the Pattern
This pattern will always "work up" into a perfect square.
A) Using size 10 needles, cast on (or knit on) 4 stitches. I prefer to knit on; it gives a more finished look to the edge.
B) Row 1 -- Knit across
C) Row 2 -- K2, YO, K to end of row (this is the first increase row)
D) Repeat Line "C" directions until there are 43 stitches on your needles.
E) The next row will be the first decrease row:
F) K1, K2tog, YO, K2 tog, K to end of row.
G) Repeat Line "F" directions for all remaining rows until there are only 4 stitches left.
H) Bind off.
To Make A Baby Blanket or An Afghan:
Simply continue adding "increase" rows until the width suits your needs. Then begin decreasing. Otherwise, follow the same directions.
Do you knit?
Do you love knitting
My Stash of Yarn
Good Quality Yarn Makes All the Difference
Be sure to purchase good quality yarns. Others are cheaper, but do not work or handle as well.
Also, items made from cheap yarns don't last as long.
I became fed up long ago with yarns that split and/or break while I am working with them.
Some Great Yarn Shops I Have Visited
In our travels, as well as having lived in 4 states, I have visited many yarn shops around the country. When we lived in North Carolina, my favorite yarn shop was The Needlecraft Center. In Michigan, I frequented The Crafty Lady, as it was called at that time. In Colorado, my favorite shop was The Knitting Habitat. They made me feel right at home immediately. You, too, can visit some of them right here:
Best Nice Yarns for Making Dishcloths
The best yarns for dishcloths are 100% cotton and microfiber. Both are absorbent. The microfiber dries quicker. The cotton will fade over time. Because making these is so fast and easy, I don't mind. If they fade, or become stained, I just make more.
Brittany Knitting Needles
I discovered the Brittany brand of straight knitting needles only a little over a year ago. I have really enjoyed them. They work much better than the brand I previously used. And I have a pair of rosewood needles that I love, but they are a size 6, much too small for this pattern.
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© 2011 MariaMontgomery