Keeping it Simple Stockinette Cowl - Free Pattern

It's that time again! There is the occasional nip in the air, and we need a few more layers to beat the chill. This is a simple cowl that is perfect for the beginning knitter looking for an introduction to the basic stitches or the intermediate looking for a quick and laid back project. The Keeping it Simple cowl is worked flat and can be made into a single round for a lighter layer or a double wrap to stay extra toasty.

I'd love to see what you create and keep you updated on new patterns. Say hello at @thefuzzysquare

Difficulty: Beginner

Worsted yarn of choice; 160 yds for single wrap, 350 yds for double
US 10 needles
Large embroidery needle

Can be made as a single wrap cowlbor a double wrap cowl.
Single wrap: 11in tall, 12in wide (24in around)
Double wrap: 11in tall, 24in wide (48in around)

CO: cast on
BO: bind off
sts: stitches
k: knit
p: purl
sl: slip stitch (for straighter edges; can knit the stitch instead, if preferred)

CO 41 sts.

Row 1: sl1, k all stitches
Row 2: sl1, k7, p25, k8

Alternate between these two rows until piece measures 24in (single wrap) or 48in (double wrap).

Loosely BO all stitches.

To finish, seam the two ends of the cowl together  and tie in loose ends with embroidery needle.

Post a Comment


  1. As a beginner knitter I find myself often frustrated with patterns. It seems that there is often times information missing. This pattern picture does NOT look like the pattern instructions---or I am supposed to go along and guess? It would be helpful even if the instructions are not there to at least have the FINISHED dimensions of the garment. Typically there is only ONE measurement given, so in this case I am expected to again guess. PLS add the dimensions to patterns and check your pattern as a "beginner" not an experienced knitter.

    1. Hi Anonymous,

      Thanks for your comment. I'm sorry to hear that the pattern has been frustrating for you. I have added height dimensions to the post to hopefully dispel some of the confusion regarding finished sizes. The pictures are also included to show sizing/scale.

      This is a beginner pattern because it uses basic stitches. The cowl is knit from one side to the other rather than from top to bottom. In other words, knit a single strip and then sew the ends together to create the cowl tube -- this could be why the written pattern and pictures looked contradictory.

      Please let me know if you run into additional problems. I'm happy to help.

      Take care,

      The Fuzzy Square

  2. Sarah, thank you for the pattern.. Your total CO should be 42 or Row 2 should be k24 :)

  3. a gauge would be helpful, number of rows and stitches per inch ?

  4. This is precisely what I was looking for. What I love is that it doesn't HAVE to be a specific size or gauge. I have some yarn to recycle from a past project - and this is great.

    Thank you!

  5. So I thought I'd sneak back in and show you a slightly modified version. I didn't have as much as I thought I did, so I ended up doing buttons and it's perfect this way as well! I just thought you might like to see:

    BTW, I think that this pattern might also be a perfect candidate for a provisional cast on and joining with kitchener. Just a thought. ;-)

    1. deenib72, thanks so much for sharing! I love that you made this your own by adding buttons -- a perfect solution! -- and thanks for suggesting a provisional cast on and joining with kitchener. Great ideas all around!! :)

  6. JudithSimpson on RavelryJuly 30, 2015 at 4:34 AM

    I am a very experienced knitter, and I taught my daughter-in-law to knit yesterday. She was very quick on the uptake, and we looked for her first pattern together last night. This one is perfect. We have today for her to work on it under guidance, then I am sure she will be able to finish it at home on her own. We may need to Skype for the cast off! Thank you so much.

    1. Judith, thank you so much for sharing!! Sounds like your daughter-in-law has a wonderful teacher. :) I'm so glad this pattern is a good fit and hope to hear how it goes!

  7. Do I slip the first stitch purl-wise or knit-wise?

  8. Hi,
    This is going to be my first project ever, so I'm literally looking up how to knit stitch, purl stitch and what a slip stitch is. I just wanted to know how long it would it take for an ultra beginner to complete 2 double wrap cowls. I want to be able to finish 2 within a month, so how many hours would I need to spend each day to get it done?

    1. Hi Kia! I'd recommend starting the pattern and then keep track of how long it takes to knit 4 inches. Once you've done the 4 inches, take the amount of time it took and multiply it by 12 (since the double wrap version is 48 inches). This will give you a rough estimate of how much time it may take.

      Keep in mind, this is a rough estimate to help you plan. It may actually take LESS time than estimated since you'll be building confidence with the stitches and the pattern as you go.

      Happy knitting!