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Easy Knitting Projects For Gifts | Free Patterns!

free knitting projects for gifts

This video demonstrates how to make easy, beginner friendly knitting projects for gifts (or to keep for yourself). Written instructions for each of the free DIY patterns are provided below!

Please note that these are recipe-style patterns designed for beginners, and therefore have minimal stitch counts and aren’t provided with specific gauges and sizing.

TIME STAMPS

Fingerless Mitts: 0:01:01

Set of Washcloths: 0:09:56

Big, Cozy Shawl: 0:20:23

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A woman wearing a pair of garter stitch fingerless mitts with arms crossed.

Knitting projects for gifts #1 – FINGERLESS MITTS

These fingerless mitts will keep hands nice and warm in chilly weather, but also allow total freedom to type, or text, or even knit because the fingers are free! Perhaps the best thing about these mitts is that though they look complicated, they’re simply a knitted square that we’re going to seam together to make a tube with a hole that the thumb can poke through.

YARN: Worsted weight wool. I used Pichinku Naturally Dyed Peruvian Yarn, 100% Peruvian Highland wool, 192m / 210yds per 100g. My pair of women’s medium mitts used approximately 45g of yarn.

NEEDLES: 4.5mm / US size 7 needles.

Like most of our easy knitting projects for gifts, the yarn and needle size options for this project are wide ranging! You can use different yarn weights and fibres, and then adjust your needle size as necessary to make a knitted fabric that you’re happy with. I recommend aiming for a solid-looking fabric so that your mitts are as warm and cozy as possible.

OTHER TOOLS: Scissors, ruler, tapestry needle.

DIRECTIONS

With the knitted cast on method, cast on 31 stitches or your own desired number. (Make sure you leave a tail of yarn at least 20cm or 8” long, as this will be used in your seaming later on. You may need a shorter or longer tail depending on how you adjust the length of your mitts.) For my style of knitting, these exact needles, and this exact yarn, 31 stitches makes mitts that are approximately 16cm or 6 ¼” long. Adjust your cast on number if you’d like longer or shorter mitts, or find that as you’re knitting the mitts aren’t coming out quite the length you’d like.

Knit 55 rows, or until your work measures approximately 16cm or 6 ¼” in length. This is to fit a women’s medium size hand with a 19cm or 7 ½” circumference. Work more or less rows as necessary to fit a different hand circumference, or to make looser or tighter mitts to your preference.

Bind off all stitches. (Make sure you leave a tail of yarn at least 30cm or 12” long, as this will be used in your seaming later on. You may need a shorter or longer tail depending on how you’ve adjusted the length of your mitts). Make a second square / rectangle of garter stitch to match the first.

Seam together the bind off / cast on edges of each piece with mattress stitch to turn the squares / rectangles into 2 tubes with thumb holes. I seamed the top of the mitts first, down to where I wanted them to hit the webbing of the thumb and to determine how much of my fingers I wanted the mitts to cover (this ended up being 8 stitches from each edge). I then seamed the bottom of the mitts, up until the stitching reached the base of the thumb when the mitts were tried on (this ended up being 14 stitches from each edge).

Weave in any ends of yarn, and enjoy your new fingerless mitts!

A collection of handknit washcloths. The easiest of easy knitting projects for gifts.

Knitting projects for gifts #2 – SET OF WASHCLOTHS

Handknit washcloths are a delight to use, and bundling a few into a set makes for an adorable gift idea. These washcloths can be used in the shower, in the kitchen, wherever you like, and the corner-to-corner squares are a great way to experiment with knitted increases and decreases.

YARN: DK weight cotton. I used Bendigo Woollen Mills, Cotton 8ply, 100% cotton; 485m / 530yds per 200g. Each of my washcloths used approximately 25g of yarn.

NEEDLES: 3.25mm / US size 3 needles.

The yarn and needle size options for this project are wide ranging! You can use different yarn weights, and then adjust your needle size as necessary to make a knitted fabric that you’re happy with. I recommend aiming for a solid-looking fabric so that your washcloths are as long-lasting and durable as possible. Cotton yarn is recommended as it’s washable and won’t felt with use.

OTHER TOOLS: Scissors, ruler, tapestry needle.

DIRECTIONS

With the long tail cast on method, cast on 3 stitches.

First Row: Knit to end.

Next Row: Knit front back, knit to end. (1 stitch increased)

Repeat last row until you have 51 stitches, or until the triangular half of the washcloth reaches your desired size. For my style of knitting, these exact needles, and this exact yarn, 51 stitches makes washcloths that are approximately 16cm or 6 ¼” square.

Knit 2 rows.

Next Row: Knit 1, knit 2 together, knit to end. (1 stitch decreased)

Repeat last row until you have 3 stitches remaining.

Bind off all stitches.

If desired, make a small loop and sew this to one of the corners of the square so the washcloth can be hung to dry (I demonstrate how I made my loop with a substitute crochet chain in the video).

Weave in any ends of yarn. Make as many washcloths to match as you’d like, bundle them together, and enjoy your new set!

A woman holding a bundle of handknit washcloths.
A bright green handknit shawl with tassels attached to the corners. Read on for more easy knitting projects for gifts.

Knitting projects for gifts #3 – BIG, COZY SHAWL

This shawl is a fun knit, and features both knit and purl stitches for a bit of texture. Its shape is a triangle that’s knit from the bottom up, so we start down at the bottom corner and increase in rows towards the flat long edge. Add tassels for a fun touch at the end, or leave them off if the recipient prefers how the shawl looks without them!

YARN: Aran weight yarn. I used Abbey Road, Wool to be Wild, 52% Merino wool, 48% acrylic; 125m / 137yds per 100g. My project required exactly 300g (275g for the shawl, 25g for the tassels). If using this exact yarn, you might like to have an extra ball on hand (just in case) to ensure you can finish knitting the shawl with a GARTER STITCH STRIPE and to leave yarn spare for the tassels.

NEEDLES: 6.5mm / US size 10.5 needles. I recommend using a circular needle for this project (100cm / 40” cable length) as it will accommodate your large number of stitches more comfortably than straight needles.

You can knit this shawl with a somewhat airy fabric, OR a relatively solid-looking one, and will still have nice results. I just recommend that you don’t knit the shawl too tightly because you want the fabric to have some flexibility and movement. Adjust your needle size as necessary to make a knitted fabric that you’re happy with.

OTHER TOOLS: Scissors, ruler, tapestry needle, lockable and ring-style stitch markers, 10cm / 4” piece of strong cardboard for the tassels.

DIRECTIONS

With the long tail cast on method, cast on 3 stitches.

First Row: Knit to end.

Next 4 Rows: Knit front back, knit to end. (1 stitch increased each row)

You should now have 7 stitches.

OPTIONAL: Add a lockable stitch marker to denote when the coming Increase Row side of your work is facing you. When you can, add a ring-style stitch marker 3 stitches in from each end of the shawl to tell you where to position the coming yarn over increases.

GARTER STITCH STRIPE

Increase Row: Knit 3, yarn over, knit to last 3 stitches, yarn over, knit 3. (2 stitches increased)

Following Row: Knit to end.

Work Increase Row and Following Row 5 times in total, so that you have 5 sets of yarn over increases for this section (you will have added 10 extra stitches).

ALTERNATIVE GARTER STITCH STRIPE INSTRUCTIONS (For if you’re using ring-style stitch markers!)

Increase Row: Knit to first marker, slip marker, yarn over, knit to second marker, yarn over, slip marker, knit to end. (2 stitches increased)

Following Row: Knit to end (slip markers when reached).

Work Increase Row and Following Row 5 times in total, so that you have 5 sets of yarn over increases for this section (you will have added 10 extra stitches).

STOCKINETTE STITCH STRIPE

Increase Row: Knit 3, yarn over, knit to last 3 stitches, yarn over, knit 3. (2 stitches increased)

Following Row: Knit 3, purl to last 3 stitches, knit 3.

Work Increase Row and THIS Following Row 3 times in total, so that you have 3 sets of yarn over increases for this section (you will have added 6 extra stitches).

ALTERNATIVE STOCKINETTE STITCH STRIPE INSTRUCTIONS (For if you’re using ring-style stitch markers!)

Increase Row: Knit to first marker, slip marker, yarn over, knit to second marker, yarn over, slip marker, knit to end. (2 stitches increased)

Following Row: Knit 3, slip marker, purl to marker, slip marker, knit to end.

Work Increase Row and THIS Following Row 3 times in total, so that you have 3 sets of yarn over increases for this section (you will have added 6 extra stitches).

Continue alternating between the GARTER STITCH STRIPE and STOCKINETTE STITCH STRIPE instructions until your shawl reaches the desired size OR until you’ve used up the desired amount of yarn. I worked 9 GARTER STITCH STRIPES and 8 STOCKINETTE STITCH STRIPES in total for my project, and in the last 2 rows of the final GARTER STITCH STRIPE, I skipped the yarn over increases to slightly round the corners of the triangle (this meant my final count was 143 stitches). I recommend ending your project with a GARTER STITCH STRIPE to help prevent the top edge of the shawl from rolling. If you don’t have enough yarn to work a full final GARTER STITCH STRIPE, you can work just a few rows of the section and then proceed straight away to the bind off.

Loosely bind off all stitches (I used the Russian bind off method for a slightly more stretchy finish than the traditional method provides). Weave in any ends of yarn.

If desired, make 3 tassels using your leftover yarn, and sew one to each corner of the shawl (I demonstrate how I used a small piece of cardboard to make my tassels in the video). At the end, you can try gently soaking your shawl in cold water and then leaving it to dry flat if you need to relax and even out the fabric.

Enjoy your new cozy neckwear!

A model holding a green shawl, just one of our easy knitting projects for a gifts

If you make any of these knitting projects for gifts, or to keep for yourself, please share them with us using the hashtag #TheSweaterCollective on social media! Thank you for your support xx

Please note that all projects seen on this website must be completed at your own risk. We do not take responsibility for any harm or injury that may occur. Be safe with your crafting!

Easy Knitting Projects For Gifts Pin.

1 thought on “Easy Knitting Projects For Gifts | Free Patterns!

  1. i will surely choose a gift from the given collection. Thanks

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