How to Knit Dishcloths

Carrie Wible
Finished easy weave dishcloth

Learning to knit dishcloths is a fun and easy project for beginners. Patterns can range from a few easy stitches to more complicated designs for those who are experienced knitters. Once you learn a few stitches, you can easily make up your own patterns.

Easy Weave Knitted Dishcloth Pattern

This basic dishcloth pattern is a good option for those who are looking for a simple project or who have recently learned how to knit.

Materials Needed

  • 80 yards of 100% cotton worsted weight yarn - 80 yards
  • Straight knitting needles
    • Standard knitting needle sizes for dishcloths are 4mm (US size 6), 4.5 mm (US size 7) or 5mm (US size 8).
    • Remember: The smaller the number, the smaller the stitches.

Instructions

Gauge in stockinette stitch, 5 sts = 1"

Cast on 47 sts

Cast on, steps 1 & 2
Cast on, steps 1 & 2
Cast on, step 3
Cast on, step 3
Cast on, step 4
Cast on, step 4

Rows 1-6: Knit across
Row 7: K7, P1, (K3, P1) across to last 7 stitches, K7
Row 8: Knit across
Row 9: K7, P1, (K3, P1) across to last 7 stitches, K7
Row 10: Knit across
Row 11: K5, P1, (K3, P1), to last 5 stitches, K5
Row 12: Knit across
Row 13: K5, P1, (K3, P1), to last 5 stitches, K5
Row 14: Knit across
Pattern: Repeat rows 7 - 14 until the dishcloth measures approximately 8 inches from the cast on row, ending the pattern by working Row 7 or 11.
Last 6 Rows: Knit across
Bind off using basic knit cast off

Calculating Gauge

Finding the gauge
One inch yields 5 stitches

Most knitting patterns show a gauge to inform the knitter of how many stitches per inch they are getting depending on the needle size. Gauge is important to know, especially when knitting clothing items. If the gauge in the pattern shows 5 stitches per inch, and you knit 4 or 6, your sizing will be off.

Knitting a swatch before each project will help eliminate possible fiascos, and can help you visualize the pattern you are making.

Dishcloth Variations

If your knitting skills are more advanced, you may want to try one of these variations.

Mock cable pattern
Mock cable pattern

Mock Cable Pattern

Use any multiple of 10.

Row 1: p4, k1, p1, k4
Row 2: p3, k2, p2, k3
Row 3: p2, k2, p1, k1, p2, k2
Row 4: p1, k2, p2, k2, p2, k1
Row 5: k2, p3, k3, p2
Row 6: k1, p4, k4, p

Roman stripe pattern
Roman stripe pattern

Roman Stripe Pattern

Use any even number of stitches.

Row 1: k1, *yo, k1; rep from * across to last st, k1
Row 2: k1, purl to last st, k1
Row 3: k1, *k2 tog; rep from * across to last st, k1
Rows 4 and 5: k1, *yo, k2 tog; rep from * across to last st, k1
Rows 6 and 7: k

Ribbing
Ribbing

Ribbing

Use any even number of stitches.

Row 1: purl
Row 2: *P1, knit next st in the row below; rep from *, end p2
Repeat Row 2

Knitting Your Own Dishcloths

It is best to use 100% cotton yarn for this kind of project, and you can choose colors to match the style of your decor. While standard dishcloth sizes are 8" or 9" squares, when you make your own you can craft larger or smaller cloths if you prefer, or even different shapes. The possibilities are limited only by your imagination and knitting skill.

How to Knit Dishcloths