Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Dishcloths

What do you knit when it's 2:00 am and you can't sleep? My personal preference is dishcloths or afghan squares.



I made a few garter stitch dishcloths the other night. The one on the right is called Grandmother's Favorite from The Dishcloth Boutique. The one on the left I made up myself.

I had a scrap ball of yarn and wasn't sure how much was there and didn't feel like measuring the yardage, so I decided to knit a mitered square backward, increasing instead of decreasing, until I ran out of yarn. This one turned out the same size as Granny's Fave, about 7 inches square. Here's how I did it:

Using worsted weight cotton yarn (Lion Kitchen Cotton or Sugar and Cream) and a pair of size 7 knitting needles, CO 3 sts.

Row 1: K1, YO, K1, YO, K1.

Row 2: K across.

Row 3: K2, YO, K1, YO, K2.

Row 4: K across.

Row 5: K3, YO, K1, YO, K3.

Row 6: K across.

Continue knitting alternate rows of increasing (YO before and after the center stitch) and plain knit until you have 63 stitches on the needle (or you have only 1-1 1/2 yards of yarn left, or the side of the square measures your desired size). Bind off.

No matter how much or how little you knit, the piece will always be square.

Edit:

First 6 rows of clothI have gotten a few emails about this pattern. I don't think I've explained it well enough, so I'm going to show how it works.

When you try knitting those first 6 rows as I've described, it doesn't really look like much, as you can see in the photo at left.

Just how is this going to become a square? Don't I need to decrease someplace to make enough corners? Where are the corners anyway?

No, actually, you don't need to decrease to make it end up a square shape. Check this out.

First 10 rows of clothFirst 14 rows of clothKnit a few more rows, increasing before and after that center stitch on odd numbered rows like you've been doing. Start row 11 and stop at the middle stitch. The photo at the left is what you will see.

It is starting to look kind of square. Work a few more rows and in the middle of row 15 you'll get something that looks like the photo at the right.

Note: You can only see the square shape when you stop in the middle of a row and hold your needles at right angles to each other the way I have done here.

Now do you see how it works? Each row you add is on the same 2 sides of the square, making it bigger and keeping it evenly square in shape.

I do hope this clears up any confusion.

52 comments:

kelli ann said...

thank you for posting this v. easy pattern... it *does* make a quite elegant afghan square, too! (knit with large needles & incredibly soft mystery-fibre yarn...) cheers!

Anonymous said...

Hi, thanks for the pattern. I also like mindless knitting when waiting in the MD's office or at traffic lights... Appreciate your efforts and luck with the baby- they don't stay small long! mary

Horse Power said...

Thank you so much for this ingenious pattern! I made one yesterday and will be making more, I love how you can customize the size!

Cora said...

I love simple things to knit when I can't sleep, which seems to be often lately.

I am in the process of knitting some 100 smallish bags to give away at Christmas to girls that have ended up on the streets. Another woman and I are getting gift baskets ready. This will be perfect for the cloths that we are giving away in the basket along with other items.

Cora

Columnist Sam Mix said...

A very nice mitered-effect cloth to teach someone inc... but where are the dec instructions? I am an enthusiastic beginner, and I started this (it knits from the leftmost edge of the one pictured I figured out) successfully. But if I continue in pattern as written, it will just become a bigger triangle. At 63 stitches, how do I dec and work to the right side while maintaining the yo's? Roll your eyes freely if it seems I am an KNIT-iot about this, I won't be surprised! In the meantime, THANKS for the cool patterns and photos!

Crochetnutt said...

I love your new pattern. What are you calling it.
Katherine

Anonymous said...

GREAT SIMPLE ELEGANT PATTERN - THANK YOU FOR SHARING.
JAN H (MA)

Anonymous said...

I was looking for information about hair waxing, but instead I've found such a great article! Thank you!

Cole said...

Thank you for this pattern. I was looking for something other than Grandmother's favorite to knit for presents. This will make a lovely cloth.

CC said...

You are so clever! I'm crazy for mitered anything. Thanks for sharing the pattern.

Frisby0 said...

This is great but how do you do the bind off? From the one needle or at the 1/2 way point off of each half on the 2 needles?
Thanks!

Ari said...

You will want to start binding off at the beginning of a row when the stitches are all on one needle.

I've shown photos of the cloth with needles at the middle of the row in order for folks to see the actual shape of the cloth. When the stitches are all on one needle, it tends to bunch up in the middle and make an unflat piece of knitting that doesn't look quite right.

Linda in Detroit said...

YOU ARE A GENIUS!

Linda in Detroit

ronda@eikenberry.name said...

I have to say that I ABSOULTLY LOVE your header! It was so well ....... NEAT!!!! I LOVED IT!

Anonymous said...

Thank-you for your clear instructions on how to knit this cloth. I watched a lady making one on the train but couldn't follow what she was telling me to do to knit one up.

Anonymous said...

A great pattern! Thanks. I made it in a few hours last night (Sunday evening). I couldn't quite figure out how it would make a square but as I began to bind off then it all made sense to me.

susanmark said...

HI I have knit several of these cloths and made matching soap sacks.Thank you for this wonderful pattern.

hugs
susan

Anonymous said...

I can't figure out how to decrease either. What am I doing wrong????

Ari said...

You don't need to do any decreasing in this cloth.

When you follow the directions, you are starting in one little corner of the cloth and increasing as you go to make the cloth larger.

When the cloth is large enough for you, bind off. That's it, honest!

Anonymous said...

this miter is fantastic. the one thing i have always hated about about regular miters was that last bit at the end, this way it is flawless.
paula

Shelley said...

How do you know where and when to to do the yo's. I saw another cloth similar to this and it didn't say either. I got stuck after the 3rd row. I can't be this dumb.. :(

Anonymous said...

Shelly - The YOs are before and after the center stitch. The easiest way to keep track is to place a marker right before that middle knit stitch in the 1st row. Then you know to always YO before and after that stitch.

SpiderWomanKnits said...

Hi! Found your pattern through Ravelry and am using it to make a mitered blanket. Thanks so much for sharing!

Cindy said...

I just made a pair of booties from a pretty single ball of fingering-weight cotton. Using smaller needles, this cloth will be perfect for using up the rest of the ball. Thanks!

Beth said...

I love this pattern! It is my new favorite dishcloth pattern, and I'm planning to use it to make washcloths to match a hooded baby towel that I'm making. My one questions is this: When you did the bind off on yours, it came out square. On mine, it came out slightly rounded around the middle corner. Did you do anything different with your bind-off?

Anonymous said...

I have tried two of these. Both have turned out to look like kites, not squares. I can't figure out what I'm doing wrong!

Any idea? I love the pattern, but mine are turning out wrong!

Julee aka Jewels said...

I LOVE THIS PATTERN!! It's so easy, quick and is just soooo pretty!!

THANK YOU!!

Julee

Anonymous said...

Mine turned out more like a kite also!!! What did I do wrong?????

Sheeri K. Cabral said...

For folks that have their stuff look like kites -- make sure you're knitting on the reverse side. A kite shape is what you'll get if you do a *stockinette* mitre or reverse mitre.

You get a square shape if you do a *garter* mitre or reverse mitre.

An easier-to-follow pattern, that I used and someone alluded to earlier in the comments:

CO3

Row 1: K1, yo, place marker, K1, yo, K1

Row 2: K all sts

Row 3: K to marker, yo, slip marker, K1, yo, K to end.

Row 4: K all sts, making sure that the 2nd yo is knitted *after* the marker is slipped.

Repeat rows 3 and 4 until there are 63 sts on your needles, or until size desired. BO all sts.

Jonna said...

Thank you for clearing up on how to do that square shape crochet as I was wondering how to do it when I read your previous post. I might get months to finish doing Reborn Clothing as I only got little time for knitting but I enjoy it so much during free time. -

Hi! I'm Janola. said...

Thanks for the pattern! I enjoyed making it. I love the look of the holes in the middle of the cloth. It was so easy and the way it all turned out just as you said is like "magic."

Anonymous said...

This is a dumb newbie question, but do i repeat rows or do I add accordingly?

Anonymous said...

Ari--the Mitered Dishcloth is great. I have already shared it with friends and will be giving it to our class of 7th and 8th grade girls who are getting into Knit and Crochet as part of their health and development class.
My partner is uncomfortable with the YOs, so I have figured a somewhat neat alternative that I will try to work up and send to you in return.
Thanks, Gma Sam
Nifty Knitter of Natty Needlework

Echo M said...

Thank you for a fantastically mindless knit. Something to wind down from a busy day.

Elayne said...

Ari, I made this pattern from your instructions a few years ago and just refound the pattern and will be making it again. It is really pretty and everyone I gave the finished cloth to loved it. Thank you again.

Elayne

Sam and Beverly said...

My question with the dishcloth pattern.................
increase you knit 2 stitches separately, yarn over and keep on knitting to the end of the row and start the next row like you did your last one. To decrease you knit one stitch, knit the next 2 together, yarn over, knit the next 2 together and that makes your decorative stitch. My big question is how do you get that same decorative stitch on the increase as you do the decrease and no one seems to be able to tell me or know, can you help me?

Becky said...

Sam and Beverly...
to answer your question...
there ARE NO DECREASES in this dishcloth pattern.
On the right side, you knit across and work the increases (YO's) around the center st.
On the wrong side you simply knit across all sts.
When the square is as big as you want it to be, you bind off.
There are no decreases.
I hope this helps.

Kindest Regards, OM girl

medyum said...

very thanks admin

Anonymous said...

Hi there Thanks so much for the pattern I will be making a few of these, I'm looking forward to making this pattern into an afghan...

knitterchik said...

BRILLIANT! Love this pattern! I'm making felted hot pads (trivets) and pot holders which I'm sure will be lovely! Thanks so much.

Knitting Samurai said...

Excellent Idea!!! You made my day. I have a ton of leftover cotton and not enough for the Grandma's Fav, so this will be a welcome change. THank you for your sleeplessness and creativity!

Anonymous said...

Pure genius! No more sweating that you have enough yarn to finish the last dishcloth of the skein. Love it, thanks so much.

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Solange Keller said...

I tried knitting one yesterday and got to about 40 stitches and it looked like a triangle so I undid it. I've read all the comments and can't find what I did wrong unless you're saying that at that 40 stitch point, if I had cast off the stitches, I would have ended up with a square. I just can't picture it and yet I really love the way it looks. Help!!

Solange Keller said...

This has me so very perplexed!! When I look at the picture, I see 4corners on the dishrag. The beginning corner and the 2 corners at the end of each needle. If I keep knitting to 63 stitches, where does my 4th corner come from? There is no way that this can be done without decreasing because, in the picture, the 2 ends of the middle row are corners and the way that I am doing it, that won't happen. I give up...

jessie19864 said...

Im kind of confused. I have finished increasing however I do not see how its going to be a square after you bind off.... Dont i have to decrease back to 3 stitches somehow?

perigrine said...

Mine have all turned into kites, and they are definitely knit in garter stitch. I generally use two strands of 4 ply cotton and 4mm needles, so I am thinking it is probably a gauge issue. The angle at half way isn't 90° so they wont ever make a square.

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Karen Dubrinsky said...

So cool. Thanks! Can't wait to try it out!

panavia999 said...

Super easy. I have multiple balls of the same ombre cotton yarn, which I thought would make a nice blanket.
Using this reverse mitre, I can make one square from each ball and stitch the squares together. Makes a nice carry along project. THANKS!

Anonymous said...

I found if I put a stitch marker after the yo k1, pm yo, in two different colors so I can tell if it is a knit row or a yo row.. Makes it easy peasy..

Paula