Knit So Fast: Vegan Knitting to Soothe the Mind

I moved across the country a month ago. Moving can be hard. Hard on the body. Hard on the soul. While I love exploring what this beautiful new city has to offer, I’ve been having trouble finding a routine. And I enjoy need routine in my life like Tom Cruise needs Scientology.

It’s the little things that I’ve been working on figuring out. Like finding “our grocery store” or learning where to get the best food photos in the house (this is a real thing). And just learning how to navigate a city that is now my home.

Vegan Knitting- Old Fashioned Dish Rags | Luminous Vegans

To help my jumbled mind at the end of each non-routiney day, I’ve been knitting. I’ve been a knitter for a while, but never as devoted as I have been lately.  There’s something comforting and cathartic about winding and looping yarn around two sticks over and over. It forces me to slow down and be in the present moment.

Vegan Knitting- Old Fashioned Dish Rags | Luminous Vegans

My project of choice lately are these knitted cloths made of 100% cotton yarn (that’s what makes this vegan knitting since wool comes from an animal). They are quick, easy and durable. Just throw them in the washer and dryer. They are also very versatile. Use it as a dish rag. Or a coaster.

Vegan Knitting- Old Fashioned Dish Rags | Luminous Vegans

We use them as reusable napkins and wash cloths in the shower. Not at the same time though. Unless I’m eating in the shower. Just kidding. I still use a separate rag for washing my body when I eat in the shower.

I don’t really care if stuff in my house is matchy-matchy so the more colorful and mix-matched these are, the better! Which is good because I have a very random collection of cotton yarn in my yarn stash. My favorite pattern right now (the one shown under the coffee mug) is from Neal’s mom’s mom.

Vegan Knitting- Old Fashioned Dish Rags | Luminous Vegans

This is a great project to learn how to knit on because of how simple it is. There’s only a few techniques to know and they are all very easy. Plus, if you mess up it’s not a big deal. Not like a one-sleeve-is-longer-than-the-other kinda deal for sweaters and such.

Old Fashion Dish Cloths

makes a cloth that is about 8 x 8 inches pre-wash (they shrink a teensy bit after washing)

Tools:

  • size 9 knitting needles (Not that important.  Smaller needles will make a smaller rag and larger needles will make a larger rag.)
  • 1 ball of cotton yarn which will make 2 rags (I use either Lily Sugar ‘N Cream or Peaches And Creme yarn which can usually be found at big craft stores like Michael’s.)
  • yarn/tapestry needle to weave in ends

Vegan Knitting- Old Fashioned Dish Rags | Luminous Vegans

Pattern:

Links to video techniques included.

  1. Cast on 4 stitches (I use the long-tail cast on method, but the single cast on method is good for beginners).
  2. Knit two rows.
  3. Knit the first 2 stitches, yarn over, knit the rest of the stitches on the needle.
  4. Repeat step 3 until there are 42 total stitches.
  5. Knit the first stitch, knit the next two stitches together, yarn over, knit the next two stitches together, knit the rest of the stitches on the needle.
  6. Repeat step 5 until there are only 4 stitches left on the needle.
  7. Bind off and weave in ends.

Vegan Knitting- Old Fashioned Dish Rags | Luminous Vegans

Are you a knitter? How do you unwind from the day?

41 thoughts on “Knit So Fast: Vegan Knitting to Soothe the Mind

  1. Camille

    Ooooh, do I spy a granny-square blanket?? I haven’t knit any wash- or dishcloths yet, but a friend made me one with a cool wavy stitch pattern (using short rows) and I’ll use it all the time once I have a kitchen again. Right now I’m finishing up a Hempathy cardigan (hemp + cotton + modal, sturdy yet surprisingly soft on the hands, I really love it), and after that I’m casting on for a lacy pullover using Firefly (a rayon/linen blend).

    And congrats on the move to Eugene (I can’t believe I missed this huge news, I guess I’ve fallen down on the blog-reading again!) Good luck getting settled!

    Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      Yes, that is totally a granny-square crochet blanket. But I can’t take the credit for it. Neal’s great grandma made it.

      I really like Hempathy yarn too! I made a t-shirt out of it. I will have to check out Firefly.

      Thanks about the move. And no worries, I am sooooooo behind on blogs it is ridiculous. :-P

      Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      Thanks Rachel! It took me awhile to warm up to knitting, but I knew I found my craft when I found myself losing track of time when doing it. But it was years ago when I learned and I’m not sure I would have the time or patience to learn a new craft-hobby these days myself.

      Reply
  2. cookeasyvegan

    My knitting speed used to be about one sweater every 10 years — I think I’ve knit two. I just couldn’t get cozy with knitting, but I really wanted to. I’ve done a bunch of crocheting instead — most recently mostly hats and scarves, but I made quite a few potholders from cotton yarn. I used a pattern called ‘magic potholder’, or something like that. They are double thick and I love using them.

    Hope you’re enjoying you new town and all the area has to offer. It’s a beautiful place.

    Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      Oh, believe me when it comes to knitted garments it takes me FOREVER! I have been knitting this one scarf for like probably a year now :-) That is why I enjoy little projects like this because I actually finish them and can use them. It’s a nice break from the longer projects.

      I only know how to crochet a little. I taught myself last year but do it so infrequently that I always have to refer to videos and such before beginning a new project. Are you on ravelry by chance? I’d love to see some of your crochet projects.

      Reply
  3. Angel

    Eugene is a magical place! The Kiva has a selection of groceries more akin to a chain grocery store while stil being fairly hippy, but is larger and less expensive than Sundance. I highly recommend a sunrise hike of Spencer Butte. And if you want to do some volunteer work, Grassroots Garden cooks a vegan lunch for their volunteers every day they’re open (Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays). Your knitting is lovely, and perfect for these chilly foggy days.

    Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      Hi! I could not be more pleased with this town! We went by the Kiva one day but did not have time to drop in. We live really close to Sundance and have been going there, but yes, some of their prices are high. Though their bulk section seems nice. We also have shopped in the regular stores too…Market of Choice and Safeway.

      We hiked Spencer Butte once and it was bee-u-tiful! I would love to do a sunrise hike but would be a bit nervous about the beginning of the hike…would it be too dark? I am a slow hiker :-)

      Thanks for the recco on Grassroots Garden. I’ll have to check it out.

      Reply
  4. coconutandberries

    Those cloths are gorgeous! I think you know I’m a fellow vegan knitter/crocheter but lately I’ve been neglecting my craft. You’ve inspired me to get back to it though. It really is a wonderful de-stresser and of course it’s nice to have the finished product too :D
    Thanks for sharing the pattern.

    Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      Thanks Emma! I go through spurts of intense knitting followed by periods where I don’t do it all. I’m in one of those knit-like-crazy phases. Plus these cloths are great for giving me a sense of accomplishment because of how fast I can whip them out. Are you on Ravelry (ravelry.com)? If you are, my username is PinkTheory….you can see many of my knitting and crochet projects there (many of them are unfinished).

      I’d love to see more of your yarn projects!

      Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      Awesome! I taught myself to crochet a couple of years ago but I do it so infrequently that I always have to refer to videos when I want to crochet something :-P

      Crochet is really good for those cute little amigurumi toys!

      Reply
  5. realrawkitchen

    This is such a neat and valuable hobby! I’ve always wanted to learn and my grandmother tried to teach me a long time ago but I never got the hang of it. I’ve been thinking about picking it up, again, more seriously.

    And I love that, you need routine like Tom Cruise needs Scientology .. haha

    Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      Yeah, its amazing how “trendy” knitting has become. It used to just be a like a thing for older-older people. My ma tried to teach me but I was too stubborn and refused to learn. Fast forward years later when I moved out, I got a book and taught myself. The book I used was called “Knitting Pretty” I think. But nowadays there are a ton of how-to videos all over the internet.

      Thanks for reading and commenting!

      Reply
  6. beatlebird

    Yay! I’m a devoted (vegan) knitter. And I love making washcloths; I even lengthen them a bit to hand towel-length, and hang them up next to the bathroom sink. Why got out and buy that stuff when you can make your own pretty creations!

    Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      Yay!! Fellow vegan knitter! Are you on Ravelry (ravelry.com) by chance? If you are, my username is PinkTheory. You can see my projects on there (many are unfinished ). I love looking at other people’s projects on there especially if they use vegan yarns so I know how the final project turns out.

      What a great idea to lengthen them into towels. I agree that homemade creations are the best. The best to look at and so fun to make!

      Reply
  7. acookinthemaking

    How pretty–I am very impressed! I do not know how to knit but it is on my ever-expanding list of things I would like to learn. Glad your projects are allowing you a chance to unwind–you’ll find that routine soon enough!

    Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      Thanks Ashley! I hear ya about the “ever-expanding” list. I have one of those for sure! There just never seems to be enough time huh? I keep thinking I need to learn how to speed read to help with that but I wonder if that would take away from enjoyment…

      Reply
  8. Kylie @ FotV

    I have never attempted knitting, between all my other craft endeavors and my current 3 jobs, plus the blog I just don’t think I’ll ever find the time! I do love the idea of having these little dish cloths around for all purpose use – you should totally sell them (if you don’t already)! I would definitely buy some!

    Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      Three jobs?? You are so ambitious…do you ever have time to just chill? :-) I know what you mean though. There are so many crafts and DIY things I wanna learn to do. But the trouble is finding the time. There’s never enough time!

      I never thought to try and sell them because I never would have thought someone would want to buy any, but I’ll definitely think about it now. I just don’t think I’m that amazing of a knitter so it is weird to think people would buy something I knit :-P

      Reply
  9. Cadry's Kitchen

    I’m so glad to see a Ketty post! You’ve been missed! (When Jackie, Kristy, and I were all together in LA we were talking about how much we love your blog and personality and wish we would have spent more time with you at VVC. Next time!)

    I totally know what you mean about finding your new normal. All of that stuff takes time, but it can be hard to relax until you’ve found your new routine.

    I really like your dish cloths! They are so colorful and cute. Plus, they’re multi-purpose. How else could I dine in the shower and clean myself at the same time? (That line cracked me up!) I agree with Kylie that you should start selling them. Knitting is way outside of my skill set. I think it takes a real attention to detail and sense of organization to knit. I tried it once with a loom and gave up almost immediately. I do find a sense of calm in making pottery, though. I like it how you have to pay attention to the task at hand and be in the moment. With writing, I’m in my head, but when I make pottery, I have to focus on something outside of myself. It’s like mud meditation.

    Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      Yes, we are definitely hanging out at the next VVC! It gives me warm fuzzies to know that I was missed! It’s always so hard to tell on the internet whether people notice. With just one blink of the eye there are 100 new blogs to replace any wayward ones. It’s hard to keep up. I’m sure having like 100+ blogs in my blog reader doesn’t help :-P

      I’m still working on the routine, but I’m slowly getting there. Neal jumped right back into things when we got here because he is just like that but I like to take my time.

      Did you ever see that Seinfeld episode where Kramer (I think) tries to eat in the shower? He even goes so far as to install a garbage disposal in the shower too. That’s what I was thinking of when I wrote that line.

      I have never thought about selling the stuff I knit. I guess because, aside from cloths like these, it usually takes me ages to make something. Maybe I’ll consider it though as a little experiment.(PS I recently found this really cute Dalek knitting pattern and it totally made me think of you!)

      I’ve tried pottery (took a class in college) and it was really fun. It was using a spinny table thing. I never stuck with it though. I am always impressed by the homemade goods made by potters like yourself. I can totally see how it is meditative much like knitting. Once one has gotten over the hurdle of learning a craft, it’s mostly auto-pilot and is extremely relaxing.

      Reply
  10. Becky Striepe

    You are making me wish that I knew how to knit! We’ve got a big stash of cloth napkins that I use for everything in the kitchen. Some are thrifted and some are homemade, and it’s so nice to have them handy. Especially now that Darrol is eating finger food. Actually, he’s wearing finger food, and occasionally some accidentally goes into his mouth.

    Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      Oh, you should totally learn how to knit! It is so easy once you get the hang of it. I love thrifted cloth napkins too! Neal and I might be aggressive wipers though, because all our cloth napkins end up getting holey after a while. The knitted ones seem to hold up to our roughness.

      Sounds like a good time now that Darrol is into finger food!

      Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      Thank you Rika! Eugene is great! We haven’t explored many restaurants because we’re still trying to rebound from the moving expenses so we are not spending much on extra stuff beyond like groceries and stuff Neal needs to get his studio up and running again. We did hike Spencer Butte recently and that was really nice. I have been really surprised at how many sunny and dry days we’ve had. I was under the impression that it would be a non-stop rain gloom fest :-)

      Reply
  11. Rambling Vegans

    How fun! I do not know how to knit but always enjoy seeing what others make. Like you, we don’t really care about things matching so much and try to get fun colors in the house. I love how versatile they are and the colors are fantastic!

    Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      Thank you Molly! Fun colors are nice especially as I realize that a lot of our furniture is kinda neutral and blah looking. I need something to brighten up the house on gloomy days.

      Reply
  12. genkikitty

    These are adorable! My aunt makes these pot holders too since I have never actually made any but I do love crocheting. So glad you found something that has inspired you to stay in the moment. :)

    Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      Thank you so much! I learned how to crochet some time last year or so. It is tricky! Are you on Ravelry (ravelry.com) by chance? If you are, my username is Pink Theory. You can see some of the other projects I’ve worked on. I’d love to see some of your crochet projects.

      Reply
      1. genkikitty

        Oh I just found this site a few weeks ago and just signed up. (Just found your message, can you tel I’m new here, haha) Anyways, I added you to my list. I love finding new ideas and seeing everyone’s art pieces.

        Reply
  13. Brittany

    OHH I love this so much!! I am so glad you found something to keep you occupied while you settle into the new area. WHO KNOWS, perhaps this will open new doors for an Etsy shop..or something similar? People ALWAYS buy things like this!!

    Reply
  14. Kristiina

    I love knitting but I am the QUEEN of starting things and never finishing them so I don’t have much to show for it unfortunately, just lots of unfinished scarves. Maybe I will turn them into dish rags and call it good :)

    Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      Oh, I dunno, I may have to compete with you for the title of Queen :-). Aside from these dishcloths, I am reeeeally terrible at finishing projects as well. As I type this, I am staring at the knitted body of a cat with no arms, legs, tail or ears. A knitted cat ball of sorts. It’s so bad that I had a big tupperware full of unfinished projects in various stages. Some need to be seamed, some need pieces sewed together, others needs sleeves… That’s why these rags are so good, it gives us habitual non-finishers something to be proud of :-)

      Reply
  15. Galen

    These are so cute. I feel like I’m still a beginner when it comes to knitting. I was knitting all the time for awhile but seem to have put everything away and forgotten about it. Many projects just sitting in my bag waiting for me. I’m going to need to investigate them.

    Reply
    1. luminousvegans Post author

      I think every knitter has a bag of unfinished projects somewhere :-). I know I certainly do. My goal this year is to try and finish that box of unfinished projects. I am not allowed to start another big project until at least a few of those old ones have been knocked out.

      Reply

Leave a comment (no login required)