How much time is spent in the kitchen? It’s the heart of a home, where people pour love into meals, hash out family affairs over coffee, and bring traditions to life in recipes handed down through the branches of the family tree. You can explore other cultures, bring in the culture and heritage of new members of the family, and stretch your own imagination. If my love language is acts of service, then I mostly wile away my sentence amid mixing bowls and armed with a whisk and a chef’s knife.
Making Practical Things for your Home
It makes sense, then, the few times I’ve knitted things for myself they were practical, humble kitchen towels. I’m clumsy, okay, like truly more clumsy than you’d believe just reading this post, but I’m also not messy – hence a never-too-big collection of kitchen towels. I have different ones for different jobs, but they all have a job and a place in my work.
Reaching for a handmade towel as I’m making either something I know very well or a brand new skill or recipe I’m trying to master (or at least make it edible!) is such a comfort. It reminds me that a home is work, that it takes grace and dedication and creativity and humility to embrace the life you’re given and you’ve chosen, and it feels good to hold a little piece of that work in my hands as I go about this and that in the kitchen.
What Yarn Should I Use for Dishtowels?
This is a simple dishtowel in a classic farmhouse style, one I’ve done in a natural or creamy color (you’ll see that on repeat in my patterns for kitchen towels so I can bleach them out), but this would look great in a variegated or self-striping yarn. I do suggest cotton yarn for this. I used Lily Sugar ‘n Cream in Ecru for this one, but I also really like Knit Picks Dishie for kitchen projects.
- CO: cast on
- Sl1: slip one stitch
- Pwise: purl wise
- BO: bind off
About 17” long and 12” wide, though the size is customizable
- Yarn: Cotton worsted, 185 yards
- Shown in Sugar & Creme in Ecru
- Gauge: 20 sts and 26 rows = 4” in garter
- Needles: US #8 DPNs
- Notions: Darning needle, stitch marker
- CO 55 stitches
- Knit 4 rows.
- Mark the first stitch of the next row.
- Odd rows: sl1 pwise, k1, *p2, k5,* repeat from * to last 4 stitches, then p2 k2
- Even rows: sl1 pwise, k1, *k2, p5,* repeat from * to last 4 stitches, then k4
- Repeat these two rows until the entire piece measures 17” or desired length.
Border – no loop
- Knit 4 rows.
- BO all stitches and weave in ends.
Border – with a loop
- Knit 4 rows.
- BO all stitches to the last 3, then knit those stitches.
- Work in I-cord using those 3 stitches until the cord measures about 6”.
- BO all stitches, leaving a longish tail.
- Sew the loop down onto the body of the towel using the tail.
- Weave in all ends.
You can also view this pattern on Ravelry (opens in a new window).
The loop is optional, but it does add a little charm and functionality to your towel.
Also, it helps to wet block this towel after you’ve made it as the ribbed structure, big as it is, will want to shrink up on you a bit.
This would make a fantastic gift wrapped around handcrafted wooden spoons for a new homeowner or budding chef. I hope you enjoy using this and remind yourself each time you reach for it while cooking that you care about your home all the way down to the little things.