Lazy-square knitted dishcloths

August 13, 2010 § 1 Comment

These two patterns are quick-to-knit dishcloths that are now a staple in my house. Of course, I don’t actually use these for the dishes (I use a scrub brush for washing and a tea towel for drying, go figure), but I love them for wiping up spills and other messes. They’re really cheap to make, as one ball of Lily cotton makes two dishcloths. They’re also pretty fast: slowpoke me can make one in two hours. And of course, they’re washable and reusable.

I call the concept behind these two patterns (and their endless variations) “lazy-squares” because they’re really easy to make, especially if, like me, you hate casting on and casting off. Well, alright, I actually don’t mind that much, but there’s something very appealing about a square that requires very little effort to start or finish.

Yarn: Lily “The Original Sugar ‘n Cream” 4-ply worsted weight 100% cotton – 2 ounces/56.7 grams – 95 yards/86 meters per skein

You can get two dishcloths from one skein.

Color: “Sunny Sky/Ciel ensoleillé” or whatever color you prefer

Needles: size US 7 (4.5 mm)

Gauge: it’s a dishcloth – break free from the gauge overlord!

Size: 7.5″ by 7.5″ or so

There are two patterns I use: a narrower border (shown in these pictures), or a wider border. It all just depends on my mood.

Knitted dishcloth 1

Cast on 4.
Row 1: k4
Row 2: k2, yo, k across row
Repeat Row 2 to 44 stitches*
Row 3: k1, k2tog, yo, k2tog, k across row
Repeat Row 3 until 4 stitches remain on needle. Cast off.

Knitted dishcloth 2

Cast on 4.
Row 1: k4
Row 2: k3, yo, k across row
Repeat Row 2 to 44 stitches*
Row 3: k2, k2tog, yo, k2tog, k across row
Repeat Row 3 until 4 stitches remain on needle. Cast off.

*Or until the diagonal edge of your knitting (the part not on the needles) measures the width/length of the size square you want – for pretty darn close to 7.5″ by 7.5″ I knit to 44 stitches, but your knitting may be tighter or looser.

Coming next: how to use the lazy-square method to make a baby blanket!

Bibliography

This concept was originally discovered by me in the book The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Knitting and Crocheting by Gail Diven and Cindy Kitchel. Sadly, this edition is no longer published, but it’s a great combination of helpfulness and hilarity. I’ve adapted it many times, and run across inspired iterations all over various other sources, many of which predate the publication of this book. It’s definitely a knitting classic.

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