Monday, October 17, 2011

Crocheted Dishcloths

I hate it when I get something wrong. It happens on a regular basis, but it still bugs me. Yesterday I published this post about these dishcloths that I had made. Unfortunately, I hadn't used one of them before I posted. Yesterday afternoon I took one out to use, and immediately I knew I'd made a mistake. My inspiration for making the dishcloths had come from a post, where the author called them "dish scrubbers." I had assumed she used an acrylic yarn (she didn't say otherwise), so that's what I used with mine. Unfortunately, when I went to use my dishcloth yesterday I knew immediately that the yarn needed to be cotton, not acrylic. Cotton is much more absorbent, and the acrylic is more coarse. I imagine the acrylic crocheted cloth would work as a scrubber on dishes, but I wanted to use mine for light dish washing and to wipe down counters, etc. For that use, the cotton is much better. Back to the drawing board... I have since made a cotton dishcloth and made adjustments to the list of supplies and instructions below to reflect using the cotton yarn. I have also changed the size of the crochet hook to a smaller hook which works better with the "I Love This Cotton" yarn at Hobby Lobby. There are other brands of cotton yarn though, and you may need to adjust the crochet hook to a larger size if your yarn is thicker than the "I Love Cotton" yarn. I truly hope this didn't inconvenience anyone... 

Go here for my 100% Cotton Dishcloths post!  

Last week I was sicker than a dog a little under the weather, so I decided to put the one thing to work that didn't hurt on my body {my hands} and do a little crocheting.

Earlier in the week I had pinned some crocheted dishcloths, so I thought I would make some for gifts...

Years ago I was given a couple of dishcloths like these as a hostess gift. I loved the organic, natural feel of them. They were wonderfully absorbent and amazingly resilient. I kept them for several years, throwing them in the washer whenever needed. I'm making mine to use as a homemade gift for friends and family for Christmas.

There are many patterns on the web for these dishcloths {including the one I pinned}, but after making a few I decided to use my own pattern. My pattern makes a tighter weaved dishcloth, which I like. {It's not too tight though, because I use a larger crochet hook.} Some of the other patterns lose their shape over time.

These cloths are a cinch to make and very inexpensive. One dishcloth can be completed -- even by the novice crocheter -- in 2-3 hours while watching TV. {Trust me on that one -- I did a lot of TV watching last week because I was ill!}

Here's what you'll need:
  • Cotton yarn (4-ply). {I would recommend cotton yarn rather than acrylic because it is much more absorbent. Hobby Lobby carries an "I Love This Cotton" yarn that works well.}
  • Size F crochet hook (you may have to adjust this depending upon the thickness of your yarn)
  • Scissors
1.) To make an 8.5" dishcloth, chain 34 stitches. 

2.) Then, insert the hook back into the second chain from the end and single crochet into each chain to complete the first row.

3.) When you get to the last chain, single crochet, chain one, turn and continue working a single crochet to the end of the next row. Like you did before, single crochet into the last stitch of that row, chain one and continue working in single crochet stitch until you end up with a square piece. You can tie off your ends at this point or complete the optional edging below like I did...

4.) Optional Edging: When you have a square piece and you are at the end of a corner: single crochet, chain one, single crochet into that corner stitch. Then continue working a single crochet all four sides -- treating each additional corner the same as above (sc, ch, sc).

5.) When you've finished all four sides, end with a slip stitch and tie it off. Weave both loose ends into your dishcloth with a darning needle or your crochet hook.

I'm making a bunch of these to use as little Christmas gifts for friends and family. I made a little tag to wrap around them with some cute fonts and cardstock. Then I secured the tag up with a little jute.

Linked to:
Show Me What You Got @ Not Just a Housewife
The Inspiration Board @ Homework