The Simplest Blanket You Can Knit

Granny's favorite dishcloths


Can you knit a dishcloth? Then you can knit a blanket. The only differences are bigger needles, a lot more yarn, and a lot more time.



Simple blanket, folded lengthwise (it's pretty big.)

Blankets can seem daunting because they’re so big, but you can make them using the idea of a really big dishcloth. I took the first dishcloth pattern my mother taught me and just kept knitting and knitting until I got a blanket out of it. You can make a pretty big blanket on straight needles if they’re of a decent length, you don’t have to buy circular needles. You can use just about any size needle you want and any weight of yarn, but it will affect how loose the stitches are and how big you can make the blanket (the thicker the yarn, the fewer stitches will fit on the needle, thus your blanket will be smaller.) These are the directions for the blanket I usually make using the dishcloth pattern.

My current project, a baby blanket using light weight yarn.

The following instructions will result in a square blanket about 50″x50″.

4 – 7oz balls of worsted weight acrylic yarn (like Red Heart Super Saver)
10.5 (6.5mm) straight needles (they should be at least 13-14″ long)

Cast on 4 stitches
First row: Knit
Second row: Knit 2, yarn over, then knit to the end of the row
Repeat row 2 until you’ve used 2 balls of yarn, or until you’ve reached your desired size, or until no more stitches will fit on the needle, whichever happens first.
Next row: Knit one, knit 2 together, yarn over, knit 2 together, then knit to the end of the row.
Repeat until there are 4 stitches left, then cast off.

This pattern makes a little border around the blanket.

I’ve given these as baby blankets (with worsted weight yarn or baby yarn) and I’m going to start giving them as housewarming gifts. Have you re-adapted a pattern to make something new? Have you found an even easier blanket pattern? Had luck with this pattern or have suggestions for changes to it? Post a comment!


About clln

I'm a crafty lady living in Rhode Island.
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42 Responses to The Simplest Blanket You Can Knit

  1. Leti says:

    thank you thank you thank you a thousand times! I KNEW there would be an easier way to knit a blanket than getting to know how to use circular needles and all the jazz! great post!

  2. Kayla says:

    I love this blanket pattern!
    Could I use this pattern and sell the blankets I make from it?
    I’m doing my first craft fair and want to sell a baby package: blanket and booties. I wouldn’t give or sell the pattern to anyone, just the blanket.

    • clln says:

      Oh my gosh, this comment is nearly 2 years old! I’m so sorry I didn’t see it until now! I don’t know who came up with the original dishcloth pattern, but I’ve seen plenty of people selling dishcloths made from this pattern at craft sales, so I assume it would be alright.

  3. Jane says:

    THANK YOU! I’m still a beginner at knitting, but have made these dishcloths before and always wondered if it was possible to make them into blankets. I’ll be giving it a go as soon as my 14 inch knitting needles arrive. Can’t wait!

  4. Gladys says:

    At the end you mention repeat until there are 4 stitches left..can you please explain this? Thanks!

    • clln says:

      Sorry for the slow response, I didn’t see your comment until now! Oops! You’ll be decreasing stitches for the second half of the blanket (this blanket is made diagonally, so you’ll increase by 1 stitch per row for the first half, then decrease on the second half. Once your blanket has reached its widest point, however wide you want it to be, you’ll keep decreasing on each row until you have a row that has 4 stitches. Then you’ll bind off those 4 stitches.

  5. Sydney says:

    Hi! I was just wondering how I would make the blanket a stockinette stitch rather than garter. After the yarn over, would I then alternate k/p? I’m a beginner so this seems like that would work…

    • clln says:

      Sorry for the slow response, I didn’t see your comment until now! I believe that would work, though I’ve never tried it. I think that the border would stop it from rolling up, too!

  6. LoriD says:

    Is there a way to adjust the pattern so it could be made more like the size of a hand towel (a rectangle, 15″ by 28″) rather than in a perfect 50″ by 50″ square? TIA!

    • clln says:

      Unfortunately, this pattern will only work with a square because it’s made diagonally. The closest way to achieve the same effect with a rectangle would probably be to knit a rectangle and then crochet a border around it.

      • LoriD says:

        Thank you for your quick reply! I will keep looking for a way to knit a diagonal rectangle!

  7. Destini says:

    How do you do the cute border?

  8. Northknitter says:

    How did you cast off, I was thinking to cast off with the edging as on the sides.

    • clln says:

      You decrease on every row for the second half of the blanket, so you cast off when there are only four stitches left, so you do it normally (it won’t mess up the border, the pattern of holes is fine.)

  9. Tricis says:

    Thank you so much! I’m going to knit my new great grand this. To be more colorful, guess I could use a multi colored yarn? Thanks!

  10. Tricis says:

    Would just one of the Bernat baby yarn, usually for 9.99 be enough for a baby blanket size, usually 36″?

    • clln says:

      I’ve made baby blankets with one of those jumbo balls of baby yarn, but they were a little on the smaller side. Still perfect size for a baby, but not quite big enough for me to curl up with on the couch. I don’t have the measurements for it, though.

  11. Tricia says:

    Another question, more important. I have bamboo needles, saysTakumi 15. 10.0. Clover. Would these work for a baby blanket? Thank you so much!

    • clln says:

      Those might be a bit big for baby yarn, it will leave some big, loose stitches. You can always try a couple of rows and see how it looks; if you like it, keep going! I used smaller needles on mine (size 10.5, 6.5mm)

  12. Tricia says:

    I do have 10 1/2, doesn’t say 6.5mm, do you think 10 1/2 will work?

    • clln says:

      Yes, 10 1/2 will work. Size 10 1/2 is another name for 6.5mm, some needles have both listed, others just have one of the sizes on them.

  13. Elizabeth De Rue says:

    Tricia, I misplaced my pattern for Grandma’s baby blanket, I started by the cast on row then
    did the increases by k3, (not k2) k to end. I have reached the point to start the decrease and I’ m not sure about the decreases. How many do I knit at this point before the k2 tog, yo, k .2 tog, k to end. ?I don’t want to mess-up the border sts.
    Thanks in advance for your help. Elizabeth

    • clln says:

      I haven’t done this myself, but I think you would k2, k2tog, yo, k2tog, k to end. You just added one more stitch before the increase, so just add one more before the decrease. I’ll keep my fingers crossed that that’s right (or maybe you already found out, sorry this is so delayed!)

  14. Angie says:

    Just wanted to say thank you for a wonderful pattern for beginners like myself. Am working it now and all I can say is WOW! -You’re a a genius!!!

  15. long shot…how many stitches did you end up with before reducing back to the other corner?

    • clln says:

      I just did a quick count on the green blanket (so it’s an estimate, I’m sure I missed some or double-counted others) and got 208 stitches. It’s gotten stretched out in the years since I first posted this, but it’s currently 58×58″.

  16. Heather Summers says:

    What do you do when you come to the end of a ball of wool and need to add another one. Where are the ends?? I’m longing to start my rug!

    • clln says:

      Sorry for the delay! I have bad knitting habits so I don’t do it the proper way, I tie the ends of the old ball and the new ball keep knitting, then I knit using both the new and old together and afterward I weave any ends in with a darning/yarn needle to hide them (keep them at least 4-6 inches long so your work doesn’t unravel!) For the proper way, here’s a helpful video from Knitpicks. They join the yarn at the beginning of a row, but I find it easier to do it after the yarn over (because you’ll be dealing with two strands when you join.)

  17. Kate says:

    Could I make the border bigger by starting with 4 stitches’ knit 3 y/o. Knit to end of row?
    Or would I them have to change the amount of starting stitches to make the border wider?
    Thanks so much!!

    • clln says:

      Hmmmm, I haven’t tried this but yes, you could do a wider border. I think you would have to start with 6 stitches and end when you get to 6 stitches, but that might give you a slightly flatter corner – not that anyone is going to be looking all that closely at the corners. Or, because you’re getting a thicker border on the sides, you could give yourself a thicker border on those corners by starting with 4 stitches and doing 2 rows with something like ‘knit one, increase, knit to end of the row,’ and then starting with the ‘knit 3, y/o…’ pattern on the third row. Then at the end, when you’re at 6 stitches, you’d do 2 rows of ‘knit 1, decrease, knit to end of row’ before binding off. Maybe test it on a dishcloth size before committing to a full blanket in case it turns out funky, lol.

  18. Beth says:

    My looking at your picture of the green blanket, it is big and that is what I want to make . I made a blue one for a baby and at the widest part I had 160 stitches and the blanket measure approx 36×36, but I would like 50×50. How many stitches would I have at the widest part. I’m guessing it would have to be at least 200 maybe more b

    • clln says:

      Your estimation was right on! The green blanket has gotten stretched out since this post (with cats clawing at it and trips through the washing machine, plus I’m a loose knitter) but it’s currently about 58×58″. I did a quick count of the stitches on the middle row and I think it’s 208. I crammed as many stitches on a regular straight needle as I possibly could, but you can always transfer to a circular needle (and still turn it after each row) if you have trouble fitting enough stitches on the straight needle. As you make it, you can always measure the edge (from the corner where you started up along the side to the needles) to see how big each side is so you know if you need to keep going.

  19. BETH says:

    Thank you so very much for your quick response. I love this pattern and it is easy to work.

  20. Angie York says:

    I love this pattern! Am on my third blanket and wove in color using the no knot method. THANK YOU SO MUCH for a pattern those of us with not enough time for the fancier stuff can accomplish.

  21. Patricia says:

    Can you use double knit yarn

    • clln says:

      Yes, double knit will work great, it will just be a lighter, thinner blanket. Depending on your gauge, you may want to use a smaller needle than I did or else you could have some big, loose stitches.

  22. Jacinta says:

    Do you just knit all plain both ways

  23. Lisamitchell says:

    It says to use size 10 knitting needles ,can I use size 13 circular in stead

    • clln says:

      For sure! It will just result in bigger, looser stitches (or you can use a slightly thicker yarn to make it a tighter blanket.) The circular needle means you’ll be able to make a bigger blanket because you’ll be able to fit more stitches than you could on straight needles,

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