Craft of the Day: Knit Cotton Washcloths

This is a quick and customizable project that results in a useful item.

Note: To make these, you will need to understand the following knitting techniques: cast on, knit stitch, yarn over, k2tog decrease, and bind off. If you need a refresher, I’ve written about knitting basics as well as increasing and decreasing before.

A picture of a stack of hand knit washcloths.
These are an easy and customizable project that’s also really useful.

To start, you will need a yarn of any weight that is 100% cotton. I used Knit Picks’ Dishie (in multi) for mine, but Lily Sugar N Cream is another good choice. A cotton-acrylic or cotton-bamboo blend is all right if that’s all you can get, but the yarn should not have wool in it, because it will end up felting if you use it to wash something in hot water. Use an appropriate size needle for the yarn. If it’s a worsted or DK weight, like the yarns mentioned, a size US 7 or 8 should work. I used size 7 for mine.

The cloths are an extremely simple project, done in garter stitch with yarnover increases that create a nice eyelet border. This is a very widely used pattern, and it’s extremely customizable.

First, you will CO 4 stitches, then knit one row.

Then, repeat the following increase row: K2, YO, K to end

Once the cloth is the desired number of stitches — about 42 will make your average-sized washcloth, but you can do fewer to get a small scrubber or more to get a dish towel — you will switch to the following decrease row: K1, K2tog, yo, K2tog, K to end.

Once there are four stitches, knit one row, then bind off.

At this point, if you want, you can make a small i-cord or crochet a chain to create a loop, or you can tie off and weave in the ends.

That’s it. You should be able to make these in just a few hours, and since it’s such a simple pattern, they’re great for in front of a movie or Netflix TV marathon.

By [E] Liza

PhD student. Knitter. Brooklynite. Long-distance dog mom. Reluctant cat lady. Majestic unicorn whose hair changes color with the wind.

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