Ch. 12 Project - Diamond Dishcloth
Increasing and Decreasing
Let’s take a break from scarves and purling to work on another very important aspect of knitting: increasing and decreasing.
There are many ways to do it, but increasing simply means adding more stitches to your needle to make your knitted project wider.
This is normally done just a few stitches at a time, so that as you knit, the project gradually and evenly gets wider.
Decreasing is just the opposite – by taking away stitches as you knit, your project gets narrower and narrower.
I’m going to introduce you to the most common of these stitches, the Yarnover, abbreviated “YO,” and the “Knit 2 Together,” abbreviated “K2tog.”
And we’re going to learn and practice them on a great and fast project – the basic dishcloth.
This project starts out easy and gets more challenging as you go – it’s perfect for advancing your skills while practicing the ones you’ve already learned.
Of course, we’ll also practice some more-advanced pattern reading as well.
In order to get started, you’re going to need to pick up some new yarn and needles, but don’t worry – this project won’t break the bank.
As you know, all good patterns lay out the materials, instructions, and any notes all in one standardized package.
It’s important that you read over the pattern before you head to the yarn store, so that you know what you’re looking for.
I’ll walk you through what to get here, but just to get in the habit, please read over the following pattern.
Project – Granny’s Favorite Dishcloth
This is a traditional pattern whose designer is unknown.
1 ball of Sugar ‘n Cream cotton yarn, US size 7 (4.5 mm) needles.
Optional:* crochet hood size G (4.25 mm).
CO 4 sts.
Row 1: K4.
Row 2: K2, YO, K across.
Repeat row 2 until you have 44 sts on the needle.
Next: K1, K2tog, YO, K2tog, K to end.
Repeat last row until you have 4 sts on the needle.
BO, weave in ends.
*Optional: Do a round of single crochet around the dishcloth, making a loop of chain stitches in one corner to hang the cloth up in the kitchen.
Shopping For Your Materials
You can find Sugar ‘n Cream cotton yarn at any craft store and possibly your supermarket or Wal-Mart. Your local yarn store may also carry it.
It runs between $1.87 and $2.50 per ball, which is great, because these dishcloths make lovely gifts, especially wrapped up with some pretty soap.
Here’s a quick yarn lesson – the weight, or thickness, of this yarn is called “worsted.”
It’s the next step down in thickness from the aran-weight yarns that we were looking at earlier.
The needle size that matches it is a US size 7 (4.5 mm), so pick up a pair of those as well while you’re at the store.
Worsted-weight yarn is the most common thickness of yarn used, so you’ll be using your size 7 needles on many, many projects to come.
If you’d like to make a little loop on one corner of your dishcloth to hang it up in the kitchen, also grab a crochet hook in size G (4.25 mm).
Don’t worry – even if you don’t know how to crochet, I have a video that will show you how to make the loop. So let’s get started!
Good luck finding the middle of your ball of yarn on this one – I usually have to “pull from the outside” on these yarns. It’s worth a try, though. ;)
Follow along with your pattern and these videos as we make the dishcloth together.