Last week we talked about learning to crochet. Now it’s time to talk learning to knit! The cold winter months are a great time to learn a new craft and bonus: you get cool stuff out of it! I learned to knit from my mother-in-law before she was my mother-in-law. I learned to knit when I moved in with her for a summer after college. She saw me crocheting and asked if I knew how to knit (which I did not). She took me to the local yarn store and set me up with everything I needed to knit a blanket with the basic stitches and sat down and taught me to knit English style (holding the yarn in the right hand). She also bought me a handy little book for reference. After the summer, I had kind of forgotten how to knit, so I went back to the book to remind myself and found another way to hold the yarn: in my left hand, just like crocheting (this is called continental style). It was so much faster, especially because even when I was trying to knit English style, I found the yarn drifting to my left hand because that was where it felt comfortable from crocheting. Now, when my mother-in-law sees me knit, it looks nothing like the way she taught me. I’ve also had the blessing of the internet at my disposal and so many helpful knitters willing to share their techniques and I’ve learned so much over the last 20 (!!! What!?!!!) years of knitting. I’ve made dishcloths, sweaters, scarves and mittens, hats, stockings and so much more, and I’ve even designed a couple of pieces!
If you’re interested in learning to knit, you should start with something simple, so I’ve collected a selection of beginner knitting patterns that will inspire you with the beautiful things you can make right off the start. Check out these beautiful easy knitting patterns and learn to knit today!
*Disclosure: this post contains affiliate links, meaning if you click on them and buy something, you don’t pay any extra, but I may get a small commission.*
First off, this super easy pattern makes a great baby gift for that friend or colleague who is expecting a baby! The Chunky Knit Baby Blanket Beginner Knitting Pattern from Tilly and Leo is just one stitch: knitting, both sides (called the Garter stitch) and this stitch does not curl at the edges and it is made with chunky 6-ply yarn, so it knits up quickly with a soft cozy squish that is sure to please.
UPDATE: Unfortunately this pattern is no longer available, but check out these other Chunky Knit Baby Blanket Patterns for some good options.
You’ll want a circular needle for this project since it’s super heavy to knit a blanket on straight needles. In fact, I use circular needles for just about everything. I recommend an interchangeable set if you’re serious about learning to knit. I have both the Nickel Options Interchangeable Circular Set and the Caspian Options Short Interchangeable Circular Set from KnitPicks.
If you’re looking for a smaller project, the Quick & Easy Knit Headband Pattern from Wool Affair is a great pattern for getting into garments. This pattern includes instructions to make it in all sizes and will guide you smoothly through the whole process. There are plenty of helpful pictures and links to video tutorials to explain the most important steps. Get the pattern at this link.
The Arrow Lake Headband Pattern from Infix Connection is a great beginner knitting pattern, knit with just knits and purls. It is knit in the round so you don’t have any seams to deal with! This headband pattern works up super quick, so you can make a bunch of them for gifts! Wouldn’t your friends be pleased to get one of these for Christmas?!?! Get the pattern by clicking this link.
The Classic Nora Scarf Knitting Pattern from Darling Jadore is a stunning, timeless scarf design that never goes out of style. Specifically designed with beginners in mind, this scarf is super easy to knit and fast to work up, making it the perfect pattern to learn this new, relaxing skill! Get the pattern at this link.
I love an infinity cowl and this Seed Stitch Infinity Cowl from Craftyssimo is another great beginner pattern for you to practice your knits and purls and make a classic scarf that will keep you warm all through the chilly winter months. Get the pattern by clicking this link.
Many people love to learn to knit with a hat pattern. This Beginner Ribbed Hat Pattern from Miskunn is designed with the beginner in mind. This simple and classic ribbed beanie knits up quickly and isvery easy to follow. Get the pattern here.
You might need a set of double-pointed needles (DPNs) to finish off the top of this hat. They look intimidating at first, with 3-4 needles sticking out of your projects, but once you get going, you only use two at a time actively, just like regular knitting needles and it’s pretty straightforward when and how you switch to the new ones. If you don’t have a set of double-pointed needles, I love my Caspian Double Pointed Needles from KnitPicks. You can, of course, find other DPNs elsewhere, but I highly recommend wooden double-pointed needles because metal ones can sometimes be a bit slippery and the last thing you want is your needles slipping out of your project!
Do you think you might be ready for a fitted garment? This Easy Knit Vest Pattern from Daisy And Peace makes a stunning and classic knit sweater vest. With no sleeves to work up, this pattern knits up quickly and comes together easily. The pattern is very detailed and has pictures of how to make each stitch, so it’s perfect for beginners. Get the pattern here.
If you prefer to work on summer projects, you could make this Beginner Vintage Cropped Tank Top Knitting Pattern from Vintage Pattern Faves. It’s perfect for the beginner, knit with the stockinette stitch (that’s the flat, kinda plain looking stitch making up the majority of the top) and knit-purl ribbing. It’s so simple and classic; you’ll look fabulous in this cute top this summer! Get the pattern here.
I’m not quite ready for summer knits yet. This Beginner-Friendly Chunky Sweater Knitting Pattern from Caidree is more the vibe I’m feeling right now. Discover the joy of a top-down, raglan sweater knit in stockinette with bold and simple construction: so stylish with its short mock turtle-neck and cropped length. Because it is knit up with super bulky yarn, it knits up super quickly. Get this pattern at this link.
If you’re really new to knitting garments, you may not know about the importance of making a gauge swatch. A gauge swatch will ensure that your finished garment actually fits, so it’s super important. Learn more about gauge swatches in this helpful article from Craftsy.
Here’s another stunning and trendy knitting pattern from Caidree: The Harper Wool Jacket Knitting Pattern. It’s a lovely cropped cardigan pattern, also knit with super bulky yarn and also knit top-down. You’ll love working top-down because you can try it on as you go to see how it fits and you’ll end up with a sweater that is just the right length for your body! It’s written as a cropped cardigan, as you see here in the picture, but if you prefer it longer, you can easily knit a few more rows until it’s the desired length! Get the pattern here.
If you’re looking to keep your toes toasty this winter, check out this Easy Knit Slipper Pattern which is made on just two needles from Vintage Pattern Faves. So, if you’re afraid of double-pointed needles, or you just don’t have them, this cute vintage pattern is just the pattern for you. (Bonus: vintage patterns are super affordable; this one is just $2.60 CAD.) Get the pattern at this link.
Need to sharpen your knitting skills to take on one of these projects? Check out some online knitting classes from Craftsy!
(Update November 2021) If you’ve were looking to get into sock-making and came here looking for The Cottage Socks Beginner Knitting Pattern from Hooked On Tilly, I’m sorry to tell you that the pattern has been discontinued. I’ve been meaning to learn to knit socks. Are Christmas stockings close? I’ve done that, but not socks. Will 2021 be the year I finally knit a pair of socks? (November update: no, it would not) Stay tuned on my Instagram to find out. Just because this pattern is no longer available, that doesn’t mean that you can’t get started on knitting some beginner socks, there are a whole bunch of patterns to explore at this link.
Winter time is the time when you really appreciate a good pair of warm mittens. This Easy Beginner Mittens Knitting Pattern from Darling Jadore promises to make the coziest warm mitts for fall and winter. The pattern says the mittens are for an intermediate knitter, so if you’re feeling confident with some of these other patterns, you get to call yourself an intermediate knitter once you knit these babies up! Get the pattern here.
I hope this pattern round-up will inspire you to learn to knit! There are so many lovely patterns out there and so much help available on the internet that even if you don’t have your very own mother-in-law to teach you to knit, you can find many resources available online (Check out Craftsy for tons of helpful classes and tutorials to walk you through anything you’re curious about). Grab one of these downloadable patterns today and get knitting or pin it for later.