Grandma’s knitted washcloth/dishcloth pattern

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There are lots of patterns for this type of cloth but after testing a few I decided they come out too small. I’m lazy so when I wash my face I want to soak the cloth, hold it in both hands have a quick scrub and done!

I’ve edged it in crochet in other versions I’ve made, but this is just cast off at the end with no frills.

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Here’s my take on the basic pattern with the initial stitch count increased:

Grandmother’s washcloth/dishcloth pattern

Yarn over: easy as easy can be although it sounds tricky. All you do is bring the yarn to the front as if you’re going to purl the next stitch – but don’t – knit the next stitch. You’ll see you have an extra loop over the needle, you will knit it on the next row.

Cast on 6 stitches
R1: knit 6
R2: knit 2, yarn over (yo) knit the rest of the row
Repeat R2 until 66 stitches on the needle
R3: knit 1, knit 2 tog, yo, knit 2 tog, knit to the end of the row
Repeat R3 until 6 stitches on the needle
Cast off or first double crochet (USA single) around the edge, you can make a chain loop in one corner if you want to hang it up.

20131102-091307.jpg It’s squarish at 25x26cm but it’s probably pointless blocking a washcloth.

I knit the cloth with 4mm needles. The yarn I used is lovely, being soft and not at all splitty, it’s the inexpensive King Cole Bamboo Cotton, shade 693. It can be washed at 30 deg, don’t tumble dry.

You can thread a pretty ribbon through all the holes, place a small bar of scented soap in the middle of the cloth, draw up and tie the ribbon in a bow. This could be a sweet little gift (I think I’d like chocolate in mine!)

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I did play around with this pattern and carried on R2 until I had a triangular scarf (see it in progress here) but ended up unravelling it to 66 stitches as I knew it was probably something I wouldn’t wear. If you think you would this is a dead simple way to knit a triangular scarf.

I’m slowly crocheting a few rows of the hot pink scarf each day, and have just started to crochet a cabled yoke cardigan for a friend’s baby. What are you making at the moment?

Thank you for all your good wishes on my Inside Crochet adventure :-) Happy weekend everyone!

Knitted dishcloth, button nerdiness & anticipation

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I’m wondering really if I need to start seeking out a dishcloth/washcloth anonymous group soon, because I still seem to be held in the grip of an obsession.

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Last night I sat and knitted my way through a Strictly and Gilmore Girls intending to finish another washcloth (in the softest bamboo cotton, not dishcloth string like the one above!) and because I couldn’t seem to stop have ended up with the makings of a scarf. It looks just like the type we used in Brownies and Guides. This morning I’ve held it up and wondered if I should undo half but I might carry on for the fun of it and decide at the end. I’ll post my version of the pattern whatever it becomes.

Really feeling I need to write a blanket apology about the awful photos you’ll see from now until Spring. I’m a clicker not a photographer – that’s obvious – and the blankety grey skies with terrible light levels are not helping at all, sorry.

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We stopped here recently and ate a delicious lunch, then wandered around the full to the brim Most Marvellous shop where I bought bags of colour coordinated buttons. I’m going to look out for a big jar – I have so many different little tins and jars of buttons. I guess they’re more colour coded sorted separately, but I do fancy having a big jar full to the brim on the windowsill in the little room. It will provide a handy distraction to stare at when I’m meant to be doing more sensible stuff on the PC!

On Sunday I’ve been invited to a rather exciting event. I can take a plus 1 and asked a couple of crafty friends if they wanted to accompany me. The first is booked on a card making workshop, the second is attending a book-binding course on Sundays. I love my friends! This did make me grin, my busy creative friends.

As the invitation helpfully stated that the +1 could be friend or family or someone from the blogging community I had a little think about who and had a brainwave. She replied within minutes sounding very excited about finally meeting after a few years of internet contact, and about the thing, which frankly is quite exciting!

To be continued….. ;-)

And another one

It’s suddenly changed into autumn weather here, so welcome to dodgy photos and cold toes once again.

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Dishcloths / washcloths are just so fast and satisfying to crochet. They make really scrubby cloths and the morning I went out with a glowing red face is proof enough.

Again I’ve used the same patten as for my last – the pink aran cotton cloth which can be found here. Basically it’s chain an even number of stitches, 1 dc and 2 tr into the 3rd ch. *skip 2 ch and 1 dc, 2 tr into the next ch and repeat *…ending with 1 dc in the last ch (st on subsequent rows.) Remember your 1ch at the beginning of rows for your turning chain, which does not count as a stitch. If you know the name for this stitch I’d like to know please.

I’ve started my chunky knitting and 4ply crochet, but the sewing up has to be done for the potentially deformed cat one evening soon because the Cats and Kittens book (by Sue Stratford) needs to go back to the library this week. Ho hum.

Thanks for your comments on yarn snobbery, Noro and sewing up, its always nice to hear from you. :-)

Crochet wash cloth

I suddenly got the urge to crochet something in one go last night, so ironically sat up until too late making this while watching a tv programme about sleep problems, yawning my head off.

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Isn’t the stitch lovely? I’ve been looking though my Vogue Stitchionary and Harmony Guide to Crochet Stitches to find out its name, but can’t find anything similar. Lack of sleep can affect your cognitive skills so I might well have missed it… Basically it’s 1 dc, 2 tr into a ch, miss 2 ch and repeat to the desired height.

Strictly speaking it needs blocking of course, some of those curly round corners need the spa treatment, but since it’s going to spend half of its life wet it seems pointless.

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I used this pattern by Kara Gunza. Do you recognise the cotton? It’s the ball of Rico aran creative cotton I bought the other week during my visit to Guthrie and Ghani. I’ve never used aran cotton before. Actually I’m not sure I’ve used aran anything before. It was a bit splitty but worth it for having such a soft cotton cloth at the end. I wanted a nice close texture so used a 4mm hook and chained about 32 to begin so it would still be a decent size.

I forgot to report that the last washcloth hasn’t made my face yellow. The Planet Penny cotton is great. If you want a cloth with good scrubability that’s the one.

Now I have a random picture of some garlic a relative’s grown. Isn’t it impressive? It looks just like it does in the shops!

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Falalalala lala la la, dishcloths & **Blogger of the Month Award**

You can test the number of las if you like, it’s just taken me far too many seconds to work out!

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Confession: when I see that people are crafting for Christmas straight after Easter my eyes tend to glaze over and to be honest I usually stop reading a blog post right there. It’s just too soon after the last and far, far too organised. BUT stay with me for another minute though because it’s much, much later in the year and these are for a VERY good cause.

I have a cat loving friend that I’ve mentioned before (she said I made her sound deranged in that post! But take a look at her blog, you never know what you’re going to get; jelly, knitting, garlic, chilli, cats or….) She’s asked me to crochet some sparkly silver mini stockings (the sparkles aren’t showing up here, but it’s pretty yarn) like the one I gave her last Christmas. These will be sold on a Deaf Access craft stall in aid of the charity during the Autumn. It sounds really good; apparently Bromley council let them have a free stall, depending on how many paying stalls there are that day depends on whether they get a good spot or not, but crafty things are usually bright and eye-catching so I bet they do well.

It occurs to me as I write that you might also like to make something Christmassy to support the work of Deaf Access. It could also be sold on their craft stall along with my stockings. If you’re interested please let me know. Gill would be thrilled to pass on your items to the group, and I’d probably be forgiven for the deranged-sounding-friend-post that I’ve drawn attention to again!

Apart from stockings I’m crocheting more dishcloths. I know there are some intricate patterns available, but even my simple stitch combinations are not as good as the plain trebled version apparently; because they don’t wring out as well or have the scrubability! (Spell check does not like this word. Red wiggly flashing lines!)017

I haven’t taken a new photo this time because they’re just rows of trebles. This time I double crocheted a border around for extra durability, but have been told it’s not necessary as they last months and months anyway. They’re boiled every day and they do seem to stand testament to my darning skills. No unravelling here, oh no! ;-)

Black sheep wools badge small This award came as a wonderful surprise! I had a message on Monday to say I’d won the new Black Sheep Wools Blogger of the Month award. It was mentioned on their Facebook and Twitter feeds yesterday, you can read their Blogger of the Month post here which features my answers to a list of questions I was sent yesterday.

How exciting, I can’t wait to spend my £25 gift card. The online shop looks fab. I loved seeing some of their stock at The Spring Knitting and Stitching show so know I’ll get some good crafty supplies. I’ll let you know what I buy. Lucky lucky me. If you nominated this blog ThaNkYoU so much!

Waffle knit cloth ~ ready to scrub

As you know I’ve been using the knitty sticks again lately. I finished the cloth early Wednesday evening, as you can probably tell by the golden sun which streamed in through the windows as I took these photos.138

I used more of my Planet Penny Cotton with 4mm circular needles. Mine measures a genteel 6″ by 7″.

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I *think* this was another of my Pinterest finds, but you know how it is – I’ve got a folder of printed patterns, saved patterns and links on three lap tops and on my iphone, plus, more in my Ravelry library. It gets a bit crazy but you save what you see at the time (and then often forget all about it for ages!)

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I really love the texture of this knit. It’s almost too nice for scrubbing dishes so I’m going to try it as a wash cloth. I haven’t used any cotton for ‘wet use’ so am wondering if my face will turn yellow! So far it’s been perfect for owl I and owl II as well as the three string bags you’ve seen lately, but I’ll let you know if I end up looking jaundiced….

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Today I’ve been sitting in the garden, in the lovely sun, trying out a new crochet mouse pattern (see the KAL: A Mile of Mice group on Ravelry for the details) for the Mile of Mice charity fund-raiser. I’ll post a piccy of him tomorrow. This song goes well with summer outdoor crochet – I’ve been listening to a double album of theirs –

Hope you’re enjoying the sun – or snuggled warmly if it’s winter your side of the world.

Yarn Along

I get this real urge to knit sometimes. I’m not great at it and even more so since I’m trying to use another technique. I look like a beginner and have dropped stitches*, had them slide off the end of the circular needle** and keep stabbing my hand***. It never used to happen before, but I’m determined to try holding the right needle underneath and have a go at sliding my hand along the needle, rather than on top and throwing the wool. It’s not easy when I’ve knitted the other way since childhood, albeit sporadically.

I thought a washcloth/dishcloth would be a useful thing to make as it’s small and fast to complete. Well it would be if I didn’t do *, ** and *** but I’ll get there!

The pattern’s here.  I really like the raised box stitch, it’s amazing what you can do with a simple knit and purl combo.

20130723-162130.jpgI think I saw this book on someone else’s yarn along post last week, when I caught sight of it at the library yesterday I grabbed it. As you’d imagine it’s no literary masterpiece and I have made predictions a third of the way through about what’s likely going to happen. I’m sure I’ll be right too. That’s ok – it’s relaxing and not in the slightest demanding. My brain can slowly continue morphing into custard!

Basically the story centres around four female characters who been drawn back to the inn (B&B?) one runs. None of them are particularly close but because of the news the inn keeper shares and Meryl’s films they’re beginning to finally bond and become suportive of each other. If you’ve read The Reading Group, The Beach Street Knitting Society and Yarn Club (aka Divas don’t Knit,) The Jane Austin Book-club or The Friday Night Knitting Club then you’ll know what to expect.

I really like Meryl Streep. There’s a few films from the book’s list I haven’t watched yet:  Heartburn, though I have read the original book by Nora Ephron, and Defending your Life which doesn’t ring any bells.

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I’m still listening to The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith (aka J.K Rowling.) It’s going to take me a weeks to listen to it in chunks. I’m really enjoying it so far, Robert Glenister (of the tv prog Hustle, brother of Philip – who was the brilliant Gene Hunt in Life on Mars and Ashes to Ashes) reads superbly. I can’t recommend it enough so far. Check it out on Audible.co.uk or Audible.com.

I’m joining in again with Ginny this week. What are you reading, crocheting or knitting?

PS: Are you following Cat of the Slugs on the Refrigerator blog and her Crochet Camp? Did you – *~*cough! cough! *~*- see the guest post on Sunday?

A bit of crochet, a bit of baking

We’ve been having lovely weather here in the south of England after what was weeks and weeks and weeks of rain. There’s a bit of a festive looking forward to the Olympic opening ceremony vibe in the air at the moment too.

I had a request to crochet another dishcloth since the one I made in January has now come to the end of its useful life. So, I sat in the garden and whipped up a new one with my stash of dishcloth string. This time it’s rows of alternating doubles and trebles for extra strength and scrubability (new word invented?)

I’ve been making banana bread too….

….Nearly ate the first slice before remembering to take a piccy! Ooops.

Banana bread

300g ripe bananas, 15ml lemon juice, 125g shelled chopped walnuts, 75g unsalted butter, 175g dark soft brown sugar, 50ml walnut oil (I don’t have any so used olive oil) 1tsp mixed spice, 3 medium eggs (I used 2 large since it’s what I had) 325g wholemeal bread flour, 1.5 tsp bicarbonate of soda, demerara sugar

Line a 2lb loaf tin with non-stick paper, heat oven to 180 oc (160 fan assisted) 350 of / Gas mark 4.

Peel the bananas and mash with the lemon juice until smooth. Stir in the walnuts and leave to one side.

Gently melt the butter in a pan, tip into a mixing bowl with the sugar, oil and spice. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition, until everything is evenly combined.

Sift the flour and bicarb into a bowl, adding the bran caught in the sieve to the flour in the bowl. Beat half the flour into the egg mixture, fold in the banana and walnut mixture, then fold in the remaining flour gently.

Spoon into the loaf tin and smooth the top. Sprinkle some demerara over the top and bake for 60-70 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean.

Dan Lepard recipe: taken from The Guardian…oh ages ago.

This is substancial but surprisingly light in texture.

Perspective

Coming across this dishcloth at Mum’s house on Thursday I realise how far I’ve come on with crochet in a relatively short time. I crocheted it last year and was obviously having problems reaching the end of rows, in all sorts of ways!

This makes me smile when I think of my recent crochet-angst around the Rhubarb Ripple; I have to remind myself from time to time that this is still a fairly new hobby.

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A present

I knitted my friend a dishcloth last year and since it died, after constant use, I haven’t heard the last of her wanting another. So, this time when I got my special delivery of cotton from Lincolnshire I crocheted her one…

It only took me an hour or so. I must be getting a lot faster at the hooky stuff.

A foundation row of chains, a row of doubles and then trebles all the way.

I’ve never seen anyone look so excited, and this was after all the joy of Christmas and present opening. Maybe I could start a business selling hand-made dish-cloths?!