The last couple years, I have been trying to improve my knitting skills. In high school, I went to a knitting club and learned how to make a “knit” scarf. Basically, I could cast on and off, and knit through the whole scarf (creating the garter stitch).
But I was hooked! Although I take breaks, sometimes for several weeks or months, I always come back to it. There is something methodically peaceful about knitting. And when I knit, I feel a connection to past generations.
My grandma knitted and crocheted. After she died, each grandchild got one of the Christmas stockings she had knitted for us. I also got to keep a throw she had crocheted. When I look at the vast amount of items she made, and the skills she had, I’m astounded. It always makes me want to knit more, and better.
Now my skills are expanding slightly, and I can do basic knit and purl stitch patterns, preferably with very few increases or decreases… I’m still working on those. 🙂
This washcloth pattern was perfect for practicing the knit and purl stitches in a pattern. Every cloth I found with a waffle stitch pattern said the texture of the cloth made it excellent for washing dishes. I altered it slightly to include an extra ridge of knit stitches down both sides along the outside, and to have a garter stitch border all the way around that was about the same size. See the original pattern HERE.
My mom was in need of some new kitchen washcloths, so I knitted her a set. She likes them so much that she keeps telling me I need to knit another set for myself. 🙂
I’m terrible with gauges and yarn weight and all the finer points of great knitting, but here are my few tips:
*The original pattern uses a size 5 needle (3.75 mm), but I used a size 6. You could probably go a little smaller or bigger on the needle size… it just means your washcloth will be a little tighter/smaller or looser/bigger. The yarn you use often says what size of needle is recommended for that yarn.
*I used 100% cotton, and I recommend the same. If you are a novice knitter like myself, I recommend going to a store and picking your yarn by feel, if possible. All cotton yarn is not created the same. Some are softer, and some are significantly more rough. For these washcloths, I used “I Love This Cotton” yarn in sage and sage ombre from Hobby Lobby. It is incredibly soft. Each 3.5 oz skein made 2 washcloths with yarn leftover. They might have made 3 washcloths each, but I didn’t want to chance it. 🙂
*You might want to repeat the 4-row waffle pattern (rows 4-7) more or fewer times to get the size of cloth you want. Go for it! As written, mine came out about square.
I didn’t block these since they are in and out of water all the time and don’t have to stay a specific size, but I did soak them in water with a little vinegar, then let them dry to colorfast them. (If you wish to block them, you can do it while they dry.) This vinegar-water soak keeps the colors from running into each other.
Waffle Knit Washcloth Pattern
Cast on 40 stitches.
Row 1-3(border): Knit.
Row 4: Knit.
Row 5: K3, purl to last 3 stitches, k3.
Row 6: K3, (k1, p2) x11, k4.
Row 7: K3, (p1, k2) x12, k1.
Repeat rows (4-7) 11 more times (for 12 total times).
Row 52-54 (border): Knit.
Do you use homemade washcloths? What is your experience with them versus store bought?