Our dishwasher is broken. Has been for months. It’s fair to say I do a lot of dishes having a family of 4 and I’d like to be able to claim expert status!
One obvious thing that makes them harder to do is not having enough dish cloths. I always grab a clean one in the morning and it hangs (rinsed) on a hook near the sink after each use to let it dry. By morning, it’s dry and I throw it in the kitchen laundry pile when I grab the fresh one. No stinky cloths, and no mold waiting for a decent enough sized laundry pile.
Of course this system only works well if you can make it through the week, and that wasn’t happening with the 4 or so we had left. So I came up with something. Actually, I came up with 5 somethings.
I’ll admit I’ve had some crochet dish cloths before over the years made by various people. Some were great, some less so. I hate holes in them. Whether part of the original design, or because they’ve stretched. So right away I knew I wanted to make a fairly tight fabric. but I also didn’t want them to be stiff or difficult to manipulate into small corners.
Alternating stripes of two different textures give the best of both worlds for the washcloth. The first, a row of dc banded on each side by a row of sc to anchor and give the dc stability allow for more movement and flex in the cloth, softening it. The other, a section of basic crunch stitch (alternating sc and dc) provide the desired density and scrubbing power.
It’s an ideal cloth for the face/shower too.
But why stop there? Sometimes you want just a bit more scrub. Ever washed the Mac and cheese pot the next day? Red Heart makes a Scrubby yarn that is fantastic. I thought why not use one strand of it held together with one of cotton, and reduced the size to make working with a slightly thicker cloth more manageable and the scrubby cloth is now usually the first I grab from the drawer. I use the actual scrub brush way less when I use this cloth. It’s that good. Rows of crossed dc help add flexibility without making large holes here. Rows of hdc work up “solid” cloth in between quickly. When made in Paintbox recycled cotton, it’s unbelievably soft and flexible when wet while maintaining its extra scrub power.
This would also be great for gentle daily exfoliation in the shower.
I have recently discovered Paintbox yarns recycled cotton. It’s worsted weight and comes in a beautiful, easy to coordinate range of colours. It’s more flexible with more drape than other cotton yarns I have used, making a wonderfully flexible fabric that is not stiff or bulky at all.
The other three cloths in this patten suite are smaller, but also effective. There’s the scrub pad, made using only the Scrubby yarn. Very durable, you can really get at the stubborn stuff. I have even removed crayon from the wall using only this cloth and a bit of water.
The small bordered cloth is great for any small quick washes. Like that coffee cup you need a few minutes ago. It’s also great for wiping up little faces and hands after a meal and the perfect size for a washable, reusable makeup remover.
The last (but of course not least) is the small loopy cloth. It has the ability to get into those weird shapes that are hard to get or make a lovely lather in the shower.
I’ve decided to release the pattern for the wash cloth for free, you’ll find it below.
The complete pattern set is printer-friendly and includes links taking you directly to stitch tutorials on YouTube as well as charts for the Wash Cloth and Scrubbie Cloth.
Have a great time making! Leave me a comment to let me know how you did. I’d also love to see your finished pieces! Use #makewithmeggie and #getcleansuite.
Yarn: 4 weight (worsted) cotton
Finished size: 7” x 8”
Gauge: not important
Stitches Used: ch (chain), sc (single crochet), dc (double crochet)
You should have 26 stitches per row throughout the pattern. Written only occasionally in pattern as reminders.
ch 27 leaving tail about 11” (27cm) long
Row 1: sc in second chain from hook. sc across. ch 2, turn (26)
Row 2: dc across. ch1, turn
Row 3: sc across. ch1 turn
Rows 4-8: [sc, dc] repeat across. ch1 turn (13 [sc, dc] per row)
Row 9: sc across. ch 2, turn Row 10: dc across. ch 1, turn
Row 11: sc across. ch 1, turn
Rows 12-16: repeat rows 4-8
Rows 17-19: repeat rows 9-11
Rows 20-24: repeat rows 4-8
Rows 25-27: repeat rows 9-11 (26)
Finish off leaving 11” (27cm) tail. Weave ends under entire first and last rows to ensure they stay over many uses and washes.