Tutorial: Striped Knit Throw Pillow

knit throw pillow free pattern

You know when you need just one more thing to decorate a room but you’re not sure what it is?  I made this cute mini throw pillow a couple years ago, and finally decided to write up a quick tutorial! It’s such an easy project even for beginners… If you can knit and purl then you can make this pillow!  The best part is you can use any yarn you have on hand for the pattern.  There is no specific gauge, and you can make the final pillow as large or small as you would like.  If you would prefer to work from a PDF, a concise inexpensive version of the pattern is available in my Ravelry store here: https://www.ravelry.com/designers/yarn-has-my-heart. 

What you need: (Click any item to shop through an affiliate link. If you make a purchase, I will receive a small commission at no cost to you ?)


Abbreviations used: 

k = knit 

p = purl 

RS = right side 

Helpful hints: 

  • If you want wider or skinnier stripes, cast on a multiple of more or less than four stitches, plus that number, plus two.  For example, you would cast on a multiple of 5, plus 7 for five-stitch-wide stripes.  You would then work the pattern as written, adding one to each number.
  • If you want a precise size, knit a gauge swatch and block it.  Measure the number of stitches and rows in four inches, then divide by four to get the stitches and rows in one inch (divide by ten if using cm).  Multiply these numbers by the measurements to get a rough number of stitches needed for the size you want, then adjust slightly so the number of stitches fits the stripe pattern you want. 
  • You can use any seaming method you want.  My pillow was seamed using whip stitch, but if I made another I would probably use mattress stitch for a smoother look. 


For a pillow with four-stitch-wide stripes, cast on a multiple of 4, plus 6.  You can use any cast on, but a basic long tail cast works fine. 

(Assuming four stitch wide stripes) 

Row 1 (RS): k5, p4, *k4, p4*, rep from * to * to last five sts, k5

Row 2: k1, *p4, k4*, rep from * to * to last 5 sts, p4, k1 

Repeat rows one and two until the piece is twice as long as you want the height of the pillow to be.  If you’re using a pillow form, be sure to check to see if it fits.  Bind off in pattern using any method you choose.  A basic bind off is fine for this project.  Weave in all ends. 


After you’re finished knitting, the fabric will probably be very wavy.  This is normal and happens because of the difference in shape between knit and purl stitches.  To get rid of this, we need to block the project.  First, soak the item in a sink or bowl of water until it’s saturated.  Next, carefully remove the item without wringing or stretching in and roll it up in a towel.  Gently squeeze the towel to remove as much water as possible.  Remove the item from the towel and carefully spread it out flat on another towel to dry.  You can gently reshape the stitches so the stripes are all even and there are no more wrinkles.  Wait for the item to dry completely before seaming. 


Fold the pillow in half with the right side facing you and the ends facing up.  If using a pillow form, fold it around the pillow form in the same way and seam. Thread a tapestry needle with a length of yarn.  Starting at the lower right-hand corner, seam the right side of the pillow.  Next, seam the top.  If you’re not using a pillow form, seam the left side until a small hole remains, then fill the pillow with stuffing and sew the rest of the seam.  For a pillow form, just continue seaming the left side until the whole pillow is closed.  

Enjoy your pretty new decor, and if you make a pillow I would love to see it!  You can use #yarnhasmyheart to share your creations, and tag @yarn_has_my_heart in your photos.  I have some more fun tutorials planned for this month, so keep an eye out! 

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