Easy dishcloth knitting pattern

A free knitted dishcloth pattern for beginners in Moss Stitch with a little white accent.

So, you are looking for a free knitted dishcloth pattern? Then you came to the right place. I put together an easy-to-knit dishcloth suitable for knitting beginners that will look lovely even if it’s your first project and, of course, does its job.

Download this Dishcloth pattern
Subscribe to my newsletter and get this easy dishcloth pattern for beginners straight to your inbox - for free.
Featured Image
two knitted dishclohts in blue and green hanging from a hannger

Fast knitters will finish this dishcloth in 45 minutes or less, so you can easily produce a couple of spares – for yourself or as a gift (and if you are a bit slower yet, don’t worry and check out my free knitting school with tons of tutorials). I made sure to take detailed pictures of all important steps, so you can follow along and knit this washcloth with ease. If you scroll further down, you will find a slight variation of this pattern as well.

Note: I earn a small commission for purchases made through links in this article.

two knitted dishcloths in green and teal

Materials You will need for this dishcloth

Important note: Don’t knit a dishcloth with wool or wool blends. You want a fiber that soaks up water well, dries fast, and you can put it into the laundry at high temperatures without felting. Linen is a good and very durable alternative to cotton.

Anyways, let’s dive right into it, eh?

Tip: Here’s a more detailed post about the basic knitting supplies every beginner needs.

How to knit A dishcloth: The instructions for the Double Moss Stitch Version

I feel the classic Double Moss Stitch is ideal for a dishcloth. It creates a texture-rich and reversible fabric that is perfect for scrubbing. It’s also an easy 4-row repeat that only involves knit stitches and purl stitches – so very easy for beginners. I also added a 3-stitch garter stitch selvage to keep it from curling.

Knitting this dishcloth pattern in green with one finished dishcloth in the background

Note: Please read this tutorial if you don’t know how to read a knitting pattern yet.

Cast on 30 stitches with needles size 7 leaving a tail of 5 inches for tidying up. Here’s my cast-on tutorial for beginners, if you don’t know how yet. I picked a long tail cast on for my project.

  • Row 1- 5: Knit
  • Row 6: K3, *K2, P2*, K3
  • Row 7: K3, *K2, P2*, K3
  • Row 8: K3, *P2, K2*, K3
  • Row 9: K3, *P2, K2*, K3

Repeat rows 6-9 eight more times.

  • Row 42- 45: Knit all stitches
  • Row 46: Change the yarn color (I use white contrasting yarn) and knit all stitches. When you reach the end of the row, tie the two ends hanging down at the beginning of your row together with a simple knot. You can cut the other yarn (the green in my case), leaving a little tail of 5 inches.
changing the yarncolor for a nice finish of this knitted dishcloth
Help for beginners:

Is this your first time knitting a knitting pattern? Here are some pointers to understand the instruction. “K” is the abbreviation for the Knit Stitch. and “P” for the Purl Stitch. “K3” means knit three stitches in a row with the knit stitch. P2 means knit two purl stitches in a row, etc. Find out more common abbreviations in my knitting glossary

Instructions between two asterisk (“*”) mean you have to repeat these stitches over and over again until you reach the designated spot. So, for row 6 it says “K3, *K2,P2*, K3”. With 30 stitches on the needle, this actually means K3, *K2, P2* (6 times), K3. or “K3, K2, P2, K2, P2, K2, P2, K2, P2, K2, P2, K2, P2, K2, P2, K3”

Once you only have one stitch left on your needle after the cast-off, it’s time to knit the little strap. There are many ways to do this, but the easiest way to do so is with a knitted cast-on.

Here’s what you have to do: you have to knit into the last stitch on your needle instead of tying a knot. But you don’t slip the stitch after you knitted it. Instead, keep it on the left needle. Now, knit into the loop of this new stitch, and keep it on the left needle, etc. Here’s a more detailed tutorial on knitted cast-on.

Cast on 18 stitches with a knitted cast-on.

knitted cast on for the strap of this dishcloth

Now, turn the project around, bind off all stitches right away, and break the yarn leaving a tail of 5 inches.

Last, but not least, you have to tidy up. First, you are going to finalize the strap. So, pick up the tapestry needle and sew the strap to the dishcloth using the tail. Remember to tie at least one knot so it won’t unravel.

Attaching the strap of the dishcloth

Now, you should have 3 more tails sticking out of your dishcloth. Use the tapestry needle to weave in the ends through the little ribs between two rows for maybe an inch. Next, weave the tail in the other direction once more. Then you can cut the rest of the tail.

sewing in the tails of the dishcloth

Important: Normally, you don’t tie knots when you tidy up the tails in knitting. But for a dishcloth, I always add one knot per tail so it won’t unravel even if you put it under stress. You want to scrub with it after all, not just look at it, eh? As there are plenty of purl bumps, you will barely notice the knot (here’s a detailed tutorial on how I weave in the ends).

The finished seam after you cut the tail
Can you still spot where I wove in the tail?

And tada – there is your finished dishcloth. Wasn’t all that hard, eh? Now go out and knit a couple of them!

Reading tip: 10 easy projects for knitting beginners

Instructions for the Dishcloth in Irish Moss Stitch

two dishcloths on a board with a lot of clean dishes

If you want to knit a couple of dishcloths, then I feel a little bit of variety makes things a bit more interesting. The Irish Moss Stitch is perfect for that. You can follow the above instructions almost to a word with only a few differences.

If you want same-sized dishcloths, you either have to use one needle size bigger (so US size 8 instead of 7) or cast on 32 stitches. As it’s a bit easier to do so with needles one size bigger I’ll stick that that:

CO 30 stitches with needle size 8

  • Row 1-5: Knit all stitches
  • Row 6: K3, *K1, P1*, K3
  • Row 7: K3, *K1, P1*, K3
  • Row 8: K3, *P1, K1*, K3
  • Row 9: K3, *P1, K1*, K3

Repeat row 6-9 8 more times and then continue as detailed above (so row 42 and onwards).

Once you get the hang of this, you can, of course, find your own variations. The Star Stitch makes a fantastic alternative. It’s very lovely to look at and creates a great structured fabric for a dishcloth.

Simple dishcloth in star stitch

So, over to you. Try to create your own dishcloth knitting patterns. It’s fairly easy to do. A lot of people also like to add yarn overs between the selvage and then repeat. This will create lovely little eyelets.

Download this Dishcloth pattern
Subscribe to my newsletter and get this easy dishcloth pattern for beginners straight to your inbox - for free.
Featured Image

That’s my knitted dishcloth pattern. I hope you were able to follow along. Make sure to comment with your questions.

Easy knitted dishcloth pattern for beginners

64 thoughts on “Easy dishcloth knitting pattern”

  1. Thank you for sharing this pattern with us Norman. It was very easy to follow and I loved the pictures and the step by step explanations. best I have seen so far. All other patterns were so short and cryptic. keep it up!

    • Hi Norman,
      I I’m still working on my dish cloth. I had to frog several rows because I kept dropping and adding stitches but I think I’m back on track. When I look at your picture mine looks a little different but maybe it’s because I’m using variegated yarn but I’m still interested and I plan to finish. Thank you Leslie

      • Hey Leslie,
        you can fix dropped stitches with a crochet hook as well. I have a link here on my blog.
        And yeah, variegated yarn will make things look a bit different, but not too different, really. But do ask away if you need any help!

  2. Hi Norman. Thank you for this lovely, helpful tutorial and website.
    I’d like to know what cotton you use for these dishcloths. There’s a small typo above where that is omitted. Thank you again

      • Norman, I’m using Opera Browser. I read the entire page and still do not see Catania Grande (but now I know and merci beaucoup!) Here’s a cut and paste from the green box on my laptop.
        [You will need:
        Pure cotton yarn for needles size 7 in at least two different colors. I am using the in this tutorial.
        Knitting needles size 7 (doesn’t matter if they are single-pointed or double-pointed; though single-pointed bamboo needles are probably easier for beginners; The needles I used were the Knitter’s Pride Dreamz. You could also check out my knitting needle guide here)
        A tapestry needle and scissors.]
        And again, thanks so much for the reply.
        Best wishes and thanks for making me smile every time I hear your intro. Daphne

    • Hey Laura,

      there are two versions. the standard moss stitch has is a 2 stitch repeat and the double moss stitch 4. So, just subtract however many stitches (multiples of 2/4) you want or need.

  3. Thanks so much for sharing this.

    I just learned the star stitch knit from you and want to incorporate it into the dishcloth pattern but not quite sure how. There is a picture on your star stitch knit page of it and would really love the pattern! <3

    • Hey Sandra,

      not sure what you are struggling with. My original dishcloth pattern is with the moss stitch. And instead of the moss stitch, you simply knit the star stitch in the middle. Just replace those lines in the pattern.

  4. Thanks for such a quick reply!! Apologies, I am new to knitting ant not quite sure how everything really work yet.

    The start stitch pattern seems a little more complicated than the moss stitch. I can do the moss stitch easily. What I am confused about is how to change the moss stitch part to start stitch. I understand that the *K1P1* is the moss stitch and the K3 before and after is the border, but how would the star stitch fit? Would it look something like this?

    CO 30

    Rows 1-5 Knit
    Row 6: K3 *P3tog and don’t slip the stitch, YO, and P3tog in the same stitch again* repeat* to last 3 stitches, K3
    Row 7: K3 *P3tog and don’t slip the stitch, YO, and P3tog in the same stitch again* repeat* to last 3 stitches, K3
    Row 8: K3 *P3tog and don’t slip the stitch, YO, and P3tog in the same stitch again* repeat* to last 3 stitches, K3
    Row 9: K3 *P3tog and don’t slip the stitch, YO, and P3tog in the same stitch again* repeat* to last 3 stitches, K3..

    ..then the rest of the pattern?

    Appreciate your help, thank you.

    • Hey Sandra,

      yeah you figured it out. You simply add 3 knit stitches on each side of the repeat and then 5 rows of garter stitch at the beginning and the end.
      However, you messed up the repeat of the star stitch. So, row #7 should be a knit row, and row#8 should start with k3, *p3, p3tog, yo, p3tog….etc

      • You are amazingly helpful, thank you so much!! Could you confirm that this would be the pattern?

        CO 30
        Rows 1-5 Knit
        Row 6: K3 *P3tog and don’t slip the stitch, YO, and P3tog in the same stitch again* repeat* to last 3 stitches, K3
        Row 7: Knit Row
        Row 8: K3 *P3tog and don’t slip the stitch, YO, and P3tog in the same stitch again* repeat* to last 3 stitches, K3
        Row 9: Knit Row
        Repeat Rows 6-9 8 more times
        Row 42- 46: Knit all stitches
        Row 47: Cast off

        I am not adding the white tail/top part, though, it is very nice and might try it another time!

        • Hey Sandra,
          i really don’t have the time to figure out individual patterns, sorry 🙁
          Kindly look at the star stitch repeat and don’t make your own alterations. Row 8 is wrong.

          • No worries, thanks. I have been back and forth between the two patterns trying to figure it out for a couple days before asking your assistance. Guess I still don’t understand…lol. I will try again in the future when I figure out how to blend patterns. Appreciate the help you gave.

  5. Thank you so much for this dish cloth pattern. I am making it now and am really enjoying it. For this first one that I am making (for myself!) I don’t hang my washcloths on hooks and was wondering how I would finish this up without the loop at the end or contrasting color. Would you be so kind as to tell me how I would finish it up without those features? Thank you!

    • Hey Susan,
      that’s quite easy. Just don’t change colors in row 46 and then bind off all stitch as normal in row 47 🙂

      • Thank you so much! I am so proud of my new dish cloth! Thank you for sharing your patterns and your wonderful explanations.

  6. How much yarn is required? Will I have enough of a 50 g ball to knit the dishcloth in one color without the strap?

  7. Norman – I am so happy I have just finished my first little dishcloth! It’s so cute and I’m quite proud of myself. Thank you for your pattern and tutorial. Your blog and videos are great. My next goal is to try and learn continental knitting as here in Australia I was taught the English way by my grandmother. My hands can’t get it so far but I’ll keep trying by watching your videos. Again, thank you!

  8. Hi Norman,
    Since this is my first comment, I’ll let you know that I found your blog by way of YouTube. I like both of your channels, expertly styled and most helpful! It was no surprise that your blog is too. Now onto the dishcloth pattern. I’m working the double moss stitch variation, and it’s so lovely! I’m glad I signed up to receive the PDF pattern and your emails. If I may continue, I wanted to share something that has really brought a smile to my face. I started knitting about three months ago. I picked up the skill as a birthday gift to myself! I ended up really loving it. So, first I knit several flat fabrics just to begin using and practicing the basics. But I quickly became eager for more, and I knit one sock! There was much to learn and I enjoyed the challenge. However, the exercise showed me that my handling skills needed improvement. Continental style for the knit stitch and English style to purl, I was moving my hands around too much. I was very inconsistent. And as such, I decided to knit your dishcloth pattern as carefully and consistently as possible. I realized that despite my wanting to knit Continental style exactly like you do, I needed to follow the other advice you’ve given multiple times: Knit however is most comfortable and natural for my own hands. Now I’m confidently using the working yarn with my stronger right hand, and I’m able to alternate between the knit stitch and the purl stitch without fuss. My knitting has absolutely leveled up while making the dishcloth! So, I’m really really happy that I’ve been knitting with you because you have helped me not just with the “how-to” of it all, but also with the “however works best for you” aspect of knitting! I’m a fan 🙂 Thanks!

    • Aww…thank you so much Joseph! Feedback likes this really means the world. It’s one thing to put instructions out there on the internet but it’s quite another to hear that they are truly helpful!

    • Hey Lisa,
      that I cannot answer as it will depend on the yarn you are using as well. But you can just cast on any number (dividable by 2) and see where it gets you. If you feel your dishcloth is too small, you can unravel it and start over again with more stitches.
      Just fill the center with moss stitch (or double moss stitch).

  9. Hello Norman,

    How many skeins of yarn (main color) will I need per washcloth? (Didn’t specify in the pattern?)

    I will be ordering online and want to ensure I have the proper amount needed to make several washcloths. I don’t want to be nearly done with one and discover I don’t have enough yarn.

    Thank you for the wonderful pattern. I’m excited to give it a try!

    Warm regards,

    • Ah..i didn’t mention it because dishcloths are typically a “scrap” project. in the is case you will need a bit less than 40grams – if u use the yarn i did, that is.

  10. I have really enjoyed learning to knit. I am still working on wash cloths but would like to try a hat. Knitting in the round seems a little intimidating but I think I will try it next.

  11. Dear Norman,
    I LOVE the dishcloth pattern. It is very easy and fast and so very pretty! I also am enjoying all your video tutorials so much! Thank you for doing these instructional lessons. You are the best teacher!!
    Sincerely, Sandra Walterhouse
    Michigan USA

  12. Hello Norman,

    Can you tell me where you purchase your pretty dp needles that you are using for the dishcloth? I want to get some like yours. I also love the cotton you are using. Such pretty colors! Where do I find that?

    • I don’t quite understand Sandra? The information is right at the top of this pattern. What else do you want to know?

  13. Norman- using Chrome and through YouTube, looking for twisted German cast on, found your video and REALLY liked the audio and it’s informative content. Good choice to include info for knitters with bit more experience. Will definitely come back as I navigate other projects.
    Melanie. Georgia, USA

  14. Thank you for sharing this dishcloth pattern, it knitted up quickly, and it makes a bright addition to my kitchen!

  15. Hi Norman. Thank you for the dishcloth pattern. I’ve been knitting dishcloths for quite some time, but after a break, needed to remind myself of the number of stitches and needle size. Your pattern fits the bill perfectly. I’ve knitted two since I downloaded the pattern just the other day. I knitted them with a mix of a neutral 8-ply and variegated 4-ply which looks really nice and is very strong and long-lasting.
    I’m looking forward to receiving more of your tips and ideas very much.

  16. Hi Norman, my 12yo son is learning to knit but I struggle to help him because I do not knit myself. Question for you: we’re looking for an easy way to use up sock yarn purchased from Knit Picks. I understand that dishcloths should be made from cotton yarn, and this sock yarn is wool. Here are the details: Fiber Content: 75% Fine Superwash Merino Wool, 25% Nylon; Weight: Fingering; Knitting Gauge: 7 – 8 sts = 1″ on #1 – 3 needles (2.25mm-3.25mm). Is there an easy project he could tackle with this yarn?

  17. Hello! I’m about to buy the yarn to knit a few of these lovely dish cloths. How many dish cloths would you say you’d get from one ball of yarn? Excluding the ivory/cream, of course. Thanks in advance for the info.

  18. Hi Norman
    Glad I came across your pattern site. I already made the download double moss stitch dishcloth! It was very easy and worked up quite fast. I look forward to trying other versions. Thanks!

  19. So simple! This is my first official knitting project and it came out so beautifully! Thank you for sharing the perfect beginner pattern 🙂

    • Well, this is a pattern for beginners and it does not come with a gauge (the gauge swatch would be just as big as the dishcloth). I would say, just knit one and adjust things from there.
      Since you might use different yarn, different needles, and a different tension, providing a measurement will be quite misleading.

  20. Hello Norman, I very much enjoy your dishcloth pattern. I subscribed and downloaded it and printed it. Then, alas, some coffee spilled on the pages. When I follow the directions to subscribe and download I receive a message saying that I have already subscribed, but no instructions to download it again. What am I doing wrong?

    • well, for obvious reasons you cannot subcribe twice. so that is what you are doing wrong. If you find the email with the download link, it might still work. So give that a try.
      And if everything fails, the complete instructions are here on my blog.

  21. Hi I have a question I am making dishcloths for the first time. I know you use Cotton but was wondering if I can use 100% Acrylic. That seems to be all the type of yarn I have other than polyester. Could you please help?

    • Acrylic is okay for dishclothes. Be aware, however, that both acrylic and polyester cannot really absorb any moisture. That’s why people prefer cotton or linen.

  22. HI Norman,

    Thanks for all the time you put into the site. It is well designed.

    I am going to use your dishcloth as pot holders. My fancy silicone ones just don’t work for me (I still get burned) so I grab a towel to pull things out of my small oven.

  23. My dish cloth is beautiful if I say so myself. Can you tell me how to adapt pattern to make wider please? Our charity knitting group makes 8 x 8 at a minimum.

    • well, simply cast on more stitches and knit across more rows. What is keeping you from doing that?
      Just make sure that you always add multiples of the repeat in the center.

  24. I am relatively new to knitting and just learned to crochet at the beginning of covid (you would be impressed by my yarn supply already! It’s GREAT!) I made the dish cloth however, my stitches seem loose top to bottom. The width follows the gauge. I am not sure if I am doing something wrong, or it’s just my technique. I’m sure with more practice I will become more confident.

  25. Hi Norman,

    It seems that you’ve put the pattern for the double moss stitch instead of moss stitch. Moss stitch according to your website is K1*P1*, K1*P1*, P1*K1*, P1*K1*, and so forth, but this pattern says to K2*P2*. The dishcloth I knit resembles the double moss stitch pattern as well.

  26. Hello Norman,
    Thank you for your email and for checking in with me.

    I did want to start on the dishcloth, but decided to redo your coaster pattern that I kind of screwed up.

    The ends were uneven and an experienced told me it might be because of the tension difference that I was using.

    What do you think?

  27. Thank you so much, Norman, for the free dishcloth patterns! I enjoyed knitting the moss stitch recipe and will do the double moss stitch next. First though, I discovered that my knitting and purling are uneven/irregular, so I’m going to work on stitching more consistently for a bit. Thanks again for all you do for us! Xo, Happy Easter, DeeAnna

  28. This is a very sharp looking cloth! I love the white rows at the top. I see that you don’t hang out on ravelry, but I wonder if you would consider listing this Easy Dishcloth pattern there so knitters could make project pages. I know I would like to link to the pattern, and perhaps a ravelry listing would bring more knitters to Nimble Needles.

    Thanks, Shelda


Leave a Comment