Dishcloths are something I always knit for myself, and sometimes for others. My best friend and my daughter always appreciate these little gifts. Since I have to order all my yarn online these days, I have kept an eye out for good yarn to use for cotton knitting. It’s always nice to give a pretty gift.
One day while browsing the Four Purls site, I saw The Sassy Skein cakes of colorful cotton – Key West Karibbean Kotton. I bought a few skeins of their bright tropical colors, and ended up loving this yarn!
This cotton is softer than the Lily’s yarn, and the end product is more springy, and the vibrant colors seem to last through washes. The cost is nearly double because the skeins are only 74 yards, but that way I can combine colors more often to make a bigger variety of cloths.
I do put this yarn in the washer and dryer – it will SHRINK. Make the dishcloths larger than you’d like because they will end up smaller.
How I Knit My Cloths on A Circular Needle
Right now my favorite way of knitting a cloth, either small or larger towel size, is to make “ribs” so the cloth does not lay flat. This is easy to do with a circular needle – larger than a 16 inch. I usually use a size 6 US but I am a tight knitter. Another size may work better for you.
Using two colors (two-color cast-on), I cast on around 30 stitches and knit across. (Or cast-on one color and add the other.) Slide the stitches back so you are knitting on the same side with the new color. Continue knitting with the next color, whether it means turning the work or sliding it.
If you do this with three colors it’s also pretty, but the ridges are less pronounced. It’s fun to experiment. With the navy blue cloth, I began by knitting seed stitch for a few rows then added a few stripes of lime green. The rest of the cloth mirrors the pattern.
Knitting this way will create ridges in the work. It gives the cloth, or towel, some texture. I hand-wash all my dishes, and having a towel to set wet dishes on, that is ribbed in this way, helps with drying.
If you are just getting started, I have written a page about free patterns and easy knitting projects, such as kitchen cloths, which you can find here.
Purl Soho For Free Stitch Patterns
The Purl Soho yarn website offers many free knitting patterns which are great ways to try out new stitches. I rarely jump in and knit the entire project pattern, but it’s simple to try out the stitch pattern on a smaller scale – say, a dishcloth. And, if I loved the pattern, go ahead and make something larger.
Pinterest and other knitting blogs often have free dishcloth patterns as well. It’s not hard to find little repeats to try for a small item.
The first cotton I used to knit dishcloths was Lily Sugar n Cream. It comes in lots of colors, including variegated, and it’s easy to find in Walmart, Target and on Amazon – my link goes to Amazon. It’s cheaper, and also a good option for kitchen knits.