FREE PATTERN: Ballband Dishcloth Reusable Swiffer Cover

It started as just another clumsy and spill prone day. Then, I tried using my Ballband Dishcloth to scrub the kitchen floor. I was amazed at how effective it was at making my linoleum nice and sparkly clean! I figured that if I could convert the dishcloth into a Swiffer Cover, I could get my knees off the floor and stop using disposeables at the same time.

I measured my gauge from a previously completed dishcloth but getting exact gauge isn't crucial to this pattern. It's just going to get abused anyway! It's also great practice for seaming because it really doesn't matter in the end if you screw it up... and you may get requests for these from friends or family, so that is a buttload of practice, let me assure you.

Here's the pattern:

Color A: varigated kitchen cotton remnants (sugar and cream, etc)
Color B: solid kitchen cotton remnants
Size 7 knitting needles

Gauge: 5 sts per 1" in Ballband Dishcloth stitch pattern.

When asked to slip a stitch, always do so purlwise.

yf = yarn forward (move yarn across needles towards you)
yb= yarn back (move yarn across needles away from you)

Cast on 69 stitches using Color A (the "outline" color) and the long-tail method. This means you will be starting with a wrong-side row.
Purl across that first row.

Begin following Ballband Dishcloth stitch pattern:

(multiple of 6 + 3)

Row 1: (color A) Knit across.
Row 2: Purl across.
Row 3: (color B) K4, slip 1, *K5, slip 1* repeat from * to * until the last 4 stitches, K4.
Row 4: K4, yf, slip 1, yb, *K5, yf, slip 1, yb,* repeat from * to * until the last 4 stitches, K4.
Row 5: P4, yb, slip 1, yf, *P5, yb, slip 1, yf,* repeat from * to * until the last stitches, P4.
Row 6: Repeat Row 4.
Row 7: (Color A) Knit across.
Row 8: Purl across.
Row 9: (Color B) K1, slip 1, *K5, slip 1,* repeat * to * until the last stitch, K1.
Row 10: K1, yf, slip 1, yb, *K5, yf, slip 1, yb,* repeat from * to * until the last stitch, K1.
Row 11: P1, yb, slip 1, yf, *P5, yb, slip 1, yf,* repeat from * to * until the last stitch, P1.
Row 12: Repeat row 10.

Repeat rows 1-12 twice. Next, work rows 1-8.
Knit one row.
Bind off loosely.

My swiffer measures 10" x 4" and my finished pieces average 14" x 5".
If your gauge is vastly different from mine, just make sure that your finished piece fits YOUR swiffer. You can adjust for any size variations when you sew the cover together.

To assemble: fold your ends over about 2 inches on each side (or however much length you need to best fit your mop head.) Sew the sides together, creating a pocket on each end. Again, this doesn't have to be exact or match up perfectly. You do plan to use this thing, right? A tip: I found it easier to line up my edges by picking an enlongated slip stitch to use as a visual guide.

I recommend machine washing the cover before your first use, especially if you plan to use it dry. It helps set the size and makes the kitchen cotton absorbent.

I am really excited about this! I'm making more in better colors instead of these vomitous ones. However, this yarn does have lots of history as I've had it almost as long as I've been knitting. You can bet I'm glad it's gone now!


Lisa said...

What an awesome idea! Will totally have to try it one day!

KnitAnna & KnitTina said...

A good use for my leftover Sugar & Cream! Thanks so much for the pattern.

quiltyknitwit said...

I'm impressed with your clever idea.

Tonyia said...

Hey this is really cool! I've always got a dishcloth going, for mindless knitting. This would be fun (and useful) too!

mariss said...

That is rad! (I know, totally 80s of me...) That is the best idea, especially with how bathroom / floor cleaning products are all about single use now :( I'm going to make one soon, but then I'll have to start cleaning my house again ;)

Crystal said...

Absolutely wonderful idea!

Alex said...

Brilliant! But with all the knitting, how is one supposed to do any cleaning? ;)

Anonymous said...

this is so brilliant, thank you for sharing, I got here from Ravelry thread, am so exited to make some.....Frenchette.

Ginny said...

This is a great idea!! Thank you for sharing an ingenious thing! I almost threw my Swiffer out cus the disposible pads are too much money!!

I found it on Ravelry!

Anonymous said...

I love this and plan to make one for myself and as gifts for others as I am already addicted to the ballband washrag!!!

PS FYI: I saw someone who has a blog...a lady who said she owns a yarn shop who makes these and sells them. I will try to go back and find out who if you want me to. She has hers posted here on Ravelry.

Kim B said...

Am starting this one instead of my next dishcloth. Ab fab idea!

mari said...

What a great idea. Thanks for the pattern.

Michelle said...

OK so I jsut found your pattern on Ravelry and this is just awesome! I'm addicted to my swiffer (I have 2 big dogs) and hey if you can help the environment some, even better!!! I'm plan on starting some this weekend!

shirley said...

Hi, I really like yr Idea for this...it's cute too... I was reading over yr pattern and could u please tell me what " P4, yb, yf," means???? I would really appreciate it...can u get back to me and let me know??/ thanks

Robin said...

Love this! I'd like your permission to make a few to sell at a craft sale...I'm not a speedy knitter so I doubt it will be more than 10!

You can reply to me via email or I'm Binna on Ravelry.

Thanks again for posting this.


Jo at Celtic Memory Yarns said...

LOVE this idea. Clever you for thinking of it. Always exasperated at using expensive throwaways. And I have LOTS of appropriate dishcloth cotton. Off to make one right now.

THANK you!

dev328 said...

I think your Swiffer cover has to win the prize for the most innovative knitting design I have ever seen! How absolutely creative, but then again isn't that how most things come about - out of a need? Congrats on this design & thanks ever so much for sharing it!!!

Judy said...

Wonderful idea...I use my swiffer a lot so I'm excited to have a cover that I can re-use..will let you know how I like it when it's done. Thanks again for a great idea and solution to save money on expensive throw away dusters.

Kate said...

This is fabulous. I love knitting "practical" things (if I make one more scarf I'll die...I just know it!). Hooray for Swiffers, Ravelry, and you!

LisaDuvall said...

Awesome pattern! I made one yesterday. You can see it on my project page on Ravelry (my name is crazybabies).

I posted it on a parenting message board I'm a member of and another woman wants me to knit her a couple and she's willing to pay. It would only be two or three. Would it be ok for me to do that? You can either email me at LMDuvall at gmail dot com or message me on ravelry.


thinggtwoo said...

This is just great! I've got friends asking for them - Oh, and I have altered the pattern a bit, wider on top & bottom, and sometimes only 4 bars instead of five. Would it bother you for me to sell them to my friends, and at my neighborhood's Fall Festival?

Anonymous said...

I am making your swiffer cover and I guess I didn't read the pattern the way that you wrote it because I repeated the pattern twice more but looking at the picture I think you only did 2 repeats of the pattern in all,am I right?thank you for a neat pattern.Mary B could you please get back to me on this I would really appreciate it

Eileen said...

this is the best freekin idea ever...i've been using old rags and towels on my swiffer...love this idea...thanks for the pattern...

Endako Jo said...

Brilliant! Thank you for sharing it with us. Can't wait to try it out.

A'tuin said...

I love it. Thanks for putting this on the web.

TammyIsBlessed said...

I found you by googling swiffer patterns, and this looks great! I haven't knitted in a long time so I'm going to have to brush up, but I'm totally going to try this. I also posted a link back to your blog on mine.

Thanks for the pattern!

Annie said...

Thank you for sharing this great pattern! I like it much more than the one in the Mason-Dixon book. Great work!

Gloria said...

I would like to make a few extra of these and sell them in a bazaar to help my friend make her student loan payment if you don't mind. We don't have time to make a lot of them, perhaps 5 or 10? We are going to make dishcloths too but these are just so cute!

Happy Knitter said...

I would like to contact you about selling these

tonya underscore stewart at hotmail dot com

Thank you

treycee said...

This is such a great idea, I am going to make one for myself, my mom, and my grandma. Those pads are too expensive anyway!! Thanks so much for selling the pattern!!! :)

Laura said...

Love this idea! I've shared it on my blog and linked to your blog. Thanks for the great eco-friendly pattern.

Bethany said...

I found your pattern on ravelry. Can't wait to make one! I would also like to sell.a couple of them, as my friends want some. Would that be ok? I'm booski on ravelry.

Kim McIlrath said...

Hi thank you for the pattern. I've been looking for a pattern like this to make covers. My original plan was to make and sell. If that's ok with you? Have a great day

Danica/Dream said...

LOVE this!! Now I know my next knitting project!

E Hisey said...

I wanted to thank you for your extremely clear and helpful pattern instructions. I've been reading a lot of posts in other places from people that don't know what "yf" and "yb" mean and you took the time to explain that and how you end up with a WS row to start.
I agree with all the positive comments. I really love the ball band dish cloth pattern and plan to make some of your swiffer covers too. Thanks!!

SHARON G said...

I've been making these for a while for my personal use & love them. Last winter I made 17 for my quilting group & they were a big hit. I've even shared the pattern with 2 of the ladies. Thank you for the great pattern & your generosity.

Sharon (bishopknitter on Ravelry)

Tj Whitcomb said...

How clever of you to make this very useful item and thank you so much for the pattern.
Tammy W

Unknown said...

Purl 4, yarn back, yarn front