Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Washcloth Fever!

Every once in a while, I get bit by the washcloth knitting bug. All I can think about is knitting washcloths. All I want to do is knit washcloths. I have a fever, and the only cure is more get the idea.

I also love to stash bust and find new ways to use up every last scrap of yarn. In that vein, I started knitting these fun stash busting washcloths that use up your leftover bits and always end up looking fun and funky. I knit two this week, and I thought I'd share with you my methodology so you can try your hand at them, if you want.

One of my favourite stitches to use for a washcloth is the Linen Stitch.

You get an interesting woven look. The front is flat, which is great for both washing your face or your dinner plates. The back is bumpy, which is perfect when you (or your frying pan) need a good scrub.

And the slipped stitches really blend the different colours together.

So, first, dig down deep into the bottom of your stash and find three coordinating bits of kitchen cotton. They don't have to be enough for a whole washcloth. You just have to like how they look together.

I like to have at least one solid colour.

Then, add in a few more complimentary colours until you know you have enough for a whole washcloth.

Now you are ready to begin!

Pick out your first three colours. We will call them A, B and C.

With yarn A, cast on an even number of stitches. In the example above, I cast on 50.
Attach colour B
Row 1: K1, s1 wyif-repeat to end.
Attach colour C
Row 2: P1, s1 wyib-repeat to end

Repeat these two rows rotating through the three colours until washcloth is as long as it is wide, then bind off. When you run out of a colour, simply attach a new one and keep going.

If you stop and pick it up again, you always start on the side with the two strands of yarn and you always pick up the strand on the bottom.

And voila! You've used up some yarn scraps and have a fun new washcloth all in one go.

Another stitch I like is the Woven Stitch.

It is similar to the Linen Stitch, with a flat front and a scrubby back and has a nice slipped stitch pattern that works well to blend multiple yarns.

Using the same method as the Linen Stitch, cast an an odd number of stitches with colour A.
Attach colour B
Row 1: K1, s1 wyif-repeat to last 2 stitches, k2.
Attach colour C
Row 2: purl
Pick up colour A
Row 3: k2, [s1 wyif, k1]-repeat to end.
Pick up colour B
Row 4: Purl

Repeat until the washcloth is as long as it is wide. Bind off!


If you do try one of these, or if you have other favourite patterns for stashbusting washcloths, I would love to see them!!

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