The main objective of a baby blanket is to keep our precious warm and safe. It should be knitted loosely so that it gives a fabulous drape.
Baby blanket knitting patterns usually either call for lining the blanket or using a seed or garter stitch border to prevent curling and produce a sturdy edge. I personally think that lining the blanket is foolproof for flattening the finished object.
It is not necessary to use baby yarns. Any yarn that is soft and squishy would do.
There are many free knitted blanket patterns on the Internet. I took some time to pick these 16 that I find interesting. Some have cute designs using bright cheery colours including 2 mini blankies. Some are elegant and awe-inspiring with lace and cables. A few are like sleep sacks.
1. Super Easy Crib Blanket
This is an easy baby blanket knitting pattern by Purl Soho because it is simply a garter stitch (basically using the knit stitch on all rows). The finished measurement is about 31 inches by 39 inches. The gauge is 18 sts to 4 inches in garter stitch. It is available on Purl Soho’s web page and they provide suggested yarns and colour combinations.
2. Kristin’s Wild Stripes Baby Blanket
The use of vibrant colour stripes makes this blanket shouts energy. It measures 30 by 40 inches. The gauge is 21 sts and 28 rows to 4 inches in stockinette stitch.
Kristin teaches how to weave in the yarns as you knit so there wouldn’t be left with a lot of loose ends to weave in later. I learned another way to reduce loose ends by weaving in the ends of each stripe as the colour stripe changes. Here’s a video of how this is done.
This blanket is lined so it is a good project to learn lining.
3. Triss Baby Blanket
This baby blanket is designed by Agnieszka Wojtkowiak at crepleKnits
It is a combination of knit and purl stitches with a 3-colour stripe change. The knit and purl stitches create triangles in alternate garter and stockinette stitches.
4. Rainbow Halos Knit Baby Blanket
Children love bright colours. This rainbow halos blanket looks like a cheery rainbow and can serve as a blanket or a playmat.
Need both double-pointed needles and long circular needles because it is knitted from the centre out using double-pointed needles and when it gets too big, transfer to circular needles. Need to know how to increase stitches by purling into the front and back (pfb) and knitting into the front and back (kfb).
The designer Jamie includes the stitch count after each colour segment making it easier to keep track of each increase row.
5. Free Honeycomb Stroller Blanket Knitting Pattern
This pattern looks difficult but it is actually quite easy. Need to know how to pick up stitches, slip stitches purlwise, and ribbing. The pattern calls for 3 different colours of yarn for the background but going with one colour or using a variegated yarn is possible. That way, we do not have to worry about pairing or changing colours.
6. Baby Chalice Blanket
Time for a lace baby blanket knitting pattern. This baby chalice blanket pattern is beautifully designed with an all over chalice lace pattern and a garter stitch border.
Karen the designer has created both a chart and written instructions for the lace. I appreciate it because I don’t really like following charts. Some people have advised against knitting lace blankets for babies for fear that their little fingers or toes may get stuck. I think it should be okay if they are used for prams or cars.
7. Reversible Cable Baby Blanket
The pattern includes instructions to knit the cables with and without a cable needle. I don’t like using cable needles so I will be most happy to learn to cable without it.
8. Shadow Cable Baby Blanket
Another cable blanket. Need to learn how to knit Cable 4 Back (C4B) and Cable 4 Front (C4F). See video tutorials below.
9. Honey Bun Brioche Blanket
Brioche knitting makes a very squishy product and it is reversible. Both sides look presentable and there is no need to line it. With the right colour combination, this blanket could be a stunner. The designer didn’t include a tutorial on how to knit brioche in her pattern. Need to find my own.
Here it is.
10. Pinwheel Entrelac Baby Blanket
This blanket is knitted in entrelac all around with a garter stitch border. It is called the Pinwheel Entrelac because it is designed with Cascade Yarns’ Pinwheel, a 100% acrylic worst weight yarn, in mind. Entrelac looks fascinating as a knit pattern and it really isn’t too difficult. Use a single colour or mix and match the colours.
To minimise flipping the work, I learned to knit backward.
11. Traffic Throw
I am not a fan of intarsia and stranded colourwork but this traffic throw is really too cute to pass over. Need to be able to read charts as the colourwork instruction for the cars and traffic lights are given in chart form.
Irregularly Shaped Blankets
Now for some variations from squarish and rectangular blankets. Baby sleep sacks and cocoons can be so cute. There are wide selections of cute patterns to choose from. Here are a few I like.
12. Teresa’s Owlie Sleep Sack
A sleep sack is super easy to knit up especially when you already know how to knit in the round. This one has an owl motif as a top border. Cast on at the opening and make decreases to close the sack. You need to be comfortable knitting in the round. This pattern probably wouldn’t translate well for knitting flat.
13. Shelley’s Work Sock Baby Snuggler
I think this project is so cool. It knits up like a giant work sock although no heel turning is needed.
The designer Shelley drew a picture of how the sleep sack should be knitted up together with dimensions and all. I think the instructions are quite clearly laid out even if it is hand-written.
14. Fisherman’s Baby Envelope
This pattern is knitted as one rectangular piece then folded like an envelope. It does not look like a sack but I think it functions like one.
The pattern is well structured and written. Amal the designer has also given good tips on the selection of zippers, buttons and how to avoid common mistakes. It is one of those projects that looked difficult but is actually quite easy.
15. Gypsycream’s Bunny Mini Cuddly Blankie
A cute pattern for a cuddly chewable blankie for a little sweetie pie. I personally think it is very Peter Rabbit. Since this is part toy part blanket, it is not suitable for a beginner.
16. Knitted Baby Lovies
This mini blankie project is part of Nicki Trench’s Color Block Knits. There are 35 projects ranging from homewares, accessories, baby knits, and clothing.
There are instructions for 3 animals. The mini blanket is basically the same. Knit the animal head you want and attach it to the blanket.
To Line or not to Line a Blanket
Lining a knitted blanket can make it more durable. It may also be better for the baby’s skin as some babies might find yarn, especially woolen ones scratchy.
Here are some instructions on lining baby blankets from sumasworld.blogspot.sg.