Learn How to Knit a Pot Holder

Learn How to Knit a Pot Holder

If you’re looking for a fun and practical knitting project, learning how to knit a pot holder is a great choice. Knitting a pot holder is a beginner-friendly project that doesn’t require much time or advanced knitting skills. Plus, it’s a perfect way to add a personal touch to your kitchen or make a thoughtful handmade gift.

In this step-by-step guide, we will walk you through the process of knitting a pot holder from start to finish. Whether you are a complete beginner or have some knitting experience, you’ll find this guide easy to follow. We’ll cover the basic knitting stitches you’ll need to know, provide tips for choosing the right yarn, and explain the essential tools you’ll need to complete the project.

To get started, gather your materials, including knitting needles and yarn of your choice. Once you have everything you need, follow our step-by-step instructions, which will guide you through casting on stitches, knitting the rows, and casting off. By the end of this guide, you’ll have a beautiful and functional pot holder that you can proudly display in your kitchen or give as a thoughtful gift.

Gather Your Materials

  • Worsted weight cotton yarn: You will need a medium-weight cotton yarn in a color of your choice. This type of yarn is durable and heat-resistant, making it perfect for a pot holder.
  • Knitting needles: You will need a pair of knitting needles in the appropriate size for your chosen yarn. It is recommended to use size US 7 (4.5mm) to create a tight fabric.
  • Tapestry needle: This needle is used for weaving in loose ends and sewing pieces together.
  • Scissors: A pair of scissors will be needed to cut yarn.
  • Measuring tape: This tool will help you measure your progress and ensure that your pot holder is the correct size.

Optional materials:

  • Stitch markers: These markers can be used to mark specific stitches or sections of your work.
  • Row counter: If you have trouble keeping track of your rows, a row counter can be useful.
  • Blocking tools: Blocking mats and pins can be used to shape and flatten your pot holder after it is completed.

Gathering all of these materials before you begin will ensure that you have everything you need for a successful knitting project. Once you have all your materials ready, you can move on to the next step.

Choose Your Yarn and Needles

When it comes to knitting a pot holder, one of the most important decisions you’ll need to make is choosing the right yarn and needles for the project. Here are some tips to help you make the best choices:

  1. Choose a yarn that is heat-resistant: Since pot holders are used to handle hot pots and pans, it’s important to select a yarn that can withstand high temperatures. Look for yarns that are specifically labeled as heat-resistant or made from materials like cotton or 100% wool, which have natural heat resistance.
  2. Consider the thickness of the yarn: The thickness, or weight, of the yarn will affect the finished pot holder’s texture and thickness. Thicker yarns will create a thicker and more cushioned pot holder, while thinner yarns will result in a lighter and less padded pot holder. Choose a yarn thickness that suits your desired pot holder characteristics.
  3. Select the appropriate needles: The size of the needles will depend on the yarn thickness you choose. Generally, thicker yarns require larger needles, while thinner yarns call for smaller needles. The recommended needle size is usually listed on the yarn label, so check the label to ensure you are using the right needles for your chosen yarn.

Once you have chosen your yarn and needles, you’ll be ready to start knitting your pot holder. Remember to always follow the instructions provided with your chosen knitting pattern and to adjust your knitting tension as needed to achieve the desired size and durability of your pot holder.

Cast On Stitches

Before you can begin knitting your pot holder, you’ll need to cast on stitches. Casting on is the process of creating the first set of stitches on your knitting needles.

To cast on stitches for your pot holder, follow these steps:

  1. Hold one knitting needle in your right hand and the other needle in your left hand.
  2. Make a slipknot by creating a loop with the yarn, bringing the working end through the loop, and pulling it tight. You can use your fingers or a knitting needle to make the slipknot. This will be your first stitch.
  3. Slide the slipknot onto the right-hand needle, holding it in place with your thumb and index finger.
  4. With your right hand, insert the tip of the right-hand needle into the slipknot from left to right, going under the left-hand needle.
  5. Bring the working yarn over the right-hand needle from back to front, creating a loop around the right-hand needle.
  6. Using the right-hand needle, pull the loop through the slipknot and onto the right-hand needle. This creates a new stitch.
  7. Repeat steps 4-6 until you have cast on the desired number of stitches for your pot holder. Make sure to keep your tension even as you cast on to ensure consistent stitch size.

Once you have cast on all your stitches, you are ready to begin knitting your pot holder! The cast on stitches will form the foundation row for your project.

Knit the Base

To begin knitting the base of the pot holder, cast on the desired number of stitches using the long tail cast on method. This will be the width of your pot holder. If you are using a thick yarn and large needles, you may only need to cast on around 20-25 stitches. However, if you are using a thinner yarn and smaller needles, you may need to cast on more stitches to achieve the desired width.

Once you have cast on the desired number of stitches, you will begin working in a basic knit stitch. Insert the right-hand needle into the first stitch on the left-hand needle, going from front to back. Wrap the yarn around the right-hand needle, and pull it through the stitch, creating a new stitch on the right-hand needle. Slide the original stitch off the left-hand needle. Repeat this process for each stitch across the row.

Continue working in the knit stitch until the base of the pot holder is the desired length. It is a good idea to measure it against the pot or pan you plan to use it with, to ensure a proper fit.

Once the base is the desired length, you can begin binding off. To bind off, knit the first two stitches as usual. Then, using the left-hand needle, lift the first stitch over the second stitch and off the right-hand needle. Knit the next stitch and repeat the process of lifting the previous stitch over the current stitch and off the needle. Continue this process until only one stitch remains, cut the yarn, and pull it through the last stitch to secure it.

Now you have completed the base of your knit pot holder. Set it aside, and continue on to knitting the sides and loop for hanging.

Add Some Color with Stripes

Adding stripes to your pot holder can be a fun way to incorporate different colors and create a unique design. Here’s how you can add stripes to your knitting project:

  1. Choose your colors: Select the yarn colors you want to use for your stripes. You can choose contrasting colors or complementing shades to create a desired effect.
  2. Decide on the width: Determine how wide you want your stripes to be. You can create thin or thick stripes by adjusting the number of rows you knit in each color.
  3. Start knitting: Begin knitting the first color as you normally would. Knit the desired number of rows in this color.
  4. Switch colors: When you’re ready to switch to the next color, cut the yarn of the first color, leaving a tail to weave in later. Join the new color by tying a secure knot at the end of the last row with the new yarn.
  5. Knit the next color: Start knitting with the new color, covering the tail of the previous yarn as you go. Follow your pattern or continue knitting in a straight stitch for the desired number of rows in the new color.
  6. Continue alternating colors: Repeat steps 4 and 5 to continue adding stripes to your pot holder. You can switch colors as frequently or infrequently as you like to achieve the desired stripe pattern.
  7. Finish off: Once you have completed all your stripes, finish off your project as usual by binding off and weaving in any loose ends.

Stripes can add a pop of color and visual interest to your pot holder. Feel free to experiment with different color combinations and stripe widths to personalize your knitting project!

Create the Loop for Hanging

Once you have completed knitting the main section of the pot holder, it’s time to create a loop for hanging. This loop will allow the pot holder to be easily stored and displayed in the kitchen.

  1. Measure out a length of yarn, typically around 6-8 inches long.
  2. Fold the yarn in half to create a loop.
  3. Locate the top corner of the pot holder where you want to attach the loop.
  4. Insert the folded end of the yarn through the corner stitch of the pot holder from the front to the back.
  5. Bring the two loose ends of the yarn through the loop created by folding.
  6. Gently pull on the loose ends to secure the loop in place.

Make sure the loop is securely attached to the pot holder. You can reinforce it with a few stitches if needed.

Once the loop is attached, your pot holder is now complete! You can hang it in your kitchen or give it as a thoughtful handmade gift. Remember to always exercise caution when using the pot holder to handle hot objects.

Bind Off Stitches

Once you have completed all the rows of your pot holder and are ready to finish it off, you will need to bind off the stitches. Binding off is the process of securing the stitches so that they do not unravel.

Here is a step-by-step guide on how to bind off stitches:

  1. Knit the first two stitches like you normally would.
  2. Using the left needle, lift the first stitch over the second stitch and off the right needle.
  3. Knit one more stitch.
  4. Lift the second stitch over the third stitch and off the right needle.
  5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 until you have only one stitch left on your right needle.
  6. Cut the yarn, leaving a long tail.
  7. Thread the tail through the last stitch and pull tight to secure it.

Once you have bound off all the stitches, you can weave in any loose ends using a yarn needle. This will give your pot holder a neat and finished appearance.

Congratulations! You have successfully bound off your stitches and completed your pot holder. Now you can enjoy using it in your kitchen or give it as a thoughtful handmade gift.

Finishing Touches and Care Instructions

Once you have completed knitting your pot holder, there are a few finishing touches you can add to make it look even better:

  • Blocking: Before using your pot holder, you may want to block it to give it a more polished look. To block your pot holder, wet it and gently pat it into shape. Then, let it dry completely before using.
  • Edging: To give your pot holder a professional finish, you can add an edging. You can use a contrasting color of yarn to crochet a simple single crochet or slip stitch border around the edges of your pot holder.

Now that you have finished your pot holder, it’s important to take proper care of it to ensure its longevity:

  1. Handwashing: It is best to handwash your pot holder to avoid damaging it. Use warm water and a gentle detergent, and gently squeeze the pot holder to clean it. Rinse thoroughly and lay it flat to dry.
  2. Avoid high heat: Pot holders are not meant to be exposed to high heat, so avoid placing them directly on hot surfaces or using them to handle extremely hot objects.
  3. Regular inspection: Periodically check your pot holder for any signs of wear and tear. If you notice any loose stitches or fraying, mend them promptly to prevent further damage.

By following these finishing touches and care instructions, you can ensure that your knitted pot holder remains in good condition and continues to serve its purpose for a long time.


What materials do I need to knit a pot holder?

To knit a pot holder, you will need a pair of knitting needles, cotton yarn, a tapestry needle, and scissors.

Is knitting a pot holder difficult for beginners?

No, knitting a pot holder is a great project for beginners. It requires basic knitting skills such as casting on, knitting, and purling.

Can I use any type of yarn to knit a pot holder?

It is recommended to use cotton yarn for pot holders as it is heat-resistant and durable. Avoid using acrylic yarn as it can melt when exposed to high heat.

How long does it usually take to knit a pot holder?

The time it takes to knit a pot holder can vary depending on your knitting speed and skill level. On average, it can take a few hours to complete.

Do I need to know any special stitches to knit a pot holder?

No, you do not need to know any special stitches to knit a pot holder. Basic knitting stitches such as knit and purl will be sufficient.

Can I customize the size of the pot holder?

Yes, you can customize the size of the pot holder by adjusting the number of stitches and rows you knit. If you want a larger pot holder, cast on more stitches and knit more rows.


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