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37 Quick and Easy Knitting Patterns

From cowls to slippers and everything in between, these fast knitting patterns can't be missed!

By: Audrey Huggett, Editor, AllFreeKnitting.com
Updated April 11, 2019
Quick and Easy Knitting Patterns

Having a couple of quick and easy knitting patterns around is always useful. Whether you’re looking for last-minute gift ideas or just want a way to use up that extra yarn, short and sweet quick knitting projects are a great way to get your creative juices flowing. With these quick and easy knitting patterns, you can create a new accessory, home decor item, or even a sweater in very little time!

When it comes to what makes knitting patterns fast, there are a few things that really speed up a pattern. In particular, bulky weight yarn and arm knitting are two things that can take a pattern from slow and laborious to speedy!

Knitters trying to improve their skills will have a wonderful time knitting up one of these easy knitting patterns, while more experienced knitters can use this collection as a resource for last-minute gifts and stash-busters. Whether you're looking for a one-skein knit pattern or a stylish accessory, you're sure to discover a quick knitting pattern to try.

There are many different reasons for picking up your needles, and this page encompasses them all. Give your brain and fingers a break from lace and marathon sweaters by trying one of these quick and easy knitting patterns. These projects have almost immediate benefits, as you will likely finish the project in just a few hours. 

Quick Scarf and Cowl Knitting Patterns

Scarves and cowls can be the ultimate knitted accessories; they can act as a handy insulating layer in the winter, or as a cute and breezy accent in the summer. You can add a knit scarf or cowl to your outfit for a splash of color or texture with almost any outfit. These accessories can make for wonderfully flexible items that are versatile, colorful, and comfortable to wear. These easy knit scarf and cowl patterns are perfect for the knitter who wants to whip up a cute garment in a hurry. Knitters of any level will enjoy working on these easy knitting patterns for cowls and scarves. The repetition of simple motifs makes these knit patterns a snap!

  • Gap-tastic Cowl

    Get the look of the stylish long, bulky cowls at the Gap without the huge price tag. The Gap-tastic Cowl designed by Jen Geigley was created to mimic this hot look.

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  • Caribbean Dreams Scarf

    The Caribbean Dreams Scarf is perfect for those who want to start dabbling in cable knitting without tackling a project that's too complicated.

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  • Dragon Scale Keyhole Scarf

    Unleash your imagination with this fun free knitting pattern. The Dragon Scale Keyhole Scarf is a quick and easy knit scarf pattern and makes a great gift as the cold holidays approach.

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  • Really Easy Ruffle Scarf

    You'll be stunned by how quickly you can create a Really Easy Ruffle Scarf. This is a variation of the popular potato chip scarf pattern, so called because knitters just can't get enough of them.

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  • Peacock Scarf Pattern

    Strut your stuff in this alluring knit scarf pattern. The Peacock Scarf Pattern is quick, easy to make, an is soft to the touch! It's a great pattern for beginning knitters who are looking for an engaging project.

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  • Neck Nuzzler Infinity Scarf

    A one-skein infinity scarf that is knit in the round. Fast and simple and toasty warm. It can easily be adjusted to be longer or shorter or twisted into a mobius.

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  • One Skein, No Purl Scarf

    No matter what your skill level, all knitters love easy knitting patterns. They're wonderful stress relievers and make great homemade gifts for friends and family.

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  • Gold-Strung Goddess Knit Scarf

    This Gold-Strung Goddess Knit Scarf is just as comfy as it is beautiful. The ribbed pattern looks good on anyone, and it's incredibly fast and simple to make.

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  • Easy Ribbed Woodland Scarf

    Once your confidence level as a knitter reaches a new high, it's time to step away from garter stitch knitting and try your hand at a few of the other wonderful knitting stitch techniques.

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  • Airy Mesh Cowl

    The key to layering during warmer weather is to keep it light! The Airy Mesh Cowl is the perfect, lightweight solution to an unfinished look.

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  • Any Outfit Cowl

    The Any Outfit Cowl will match anything in your wardrobe. The blues, purples, greens, reds, and oranges will make you stand out! Show off your handy knitting needlework when you wear it.

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Fast Knitting Patterns for Home Decor

Add a bit of knitted charm to your house with these charming easy knitting patterns. In the rush to get finish a sweater or find the perfect scarf pattern, it’s easy to forget that your knitting can adorn your house too. From dishcloths to afghans, your knitting can be used to give your house a welcoming, cozy feel. Making your own home décor is an easy way to give your wallet a break, especially if you use leftover yarn from your stash. We've also included a few knit accessories that will put your skills to good use! From purses to coffee cup cozies, there are plenty of quick and easy knit decor patterns that can be created by knitters of almost any skill level. These fast knitting patterns will also make wonderful gift ideas for any upcoming baby showers, weddings, or housewarming parties on your calendar. You will discover that these budget-friendly knit patterns are definitely worth a look!

  • 30 Minute Knitted Purse

    This simply knitted purse will soon become one of your favorite knitting patterns. Complete with an i-cord drawstring, this bag knits up quickly and makes a great companion for shopping.

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  • Ocean Ripple Baby Afghan

    Bring the beauty of the ocean into your home with this Ocean Ripple Baby Afghan. Made with chunky blue yarn, this free knit afghan pattern is quick to knit and has an intriguing ripple texture.

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  • Pop Tart Phone Case

    Have the sweetest phone of all of your friends with this Pop Tart Phone Case. Everyone loves pop tarts and now you can have your favorite breakfast food with you without all of the extra calories.

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  • One Hour Arm Knit Blanket

    The ease and simplicity of arm knitting is put to good use in the One Hour Arm Knit Blanket. This thick and quick beginner knitting blanket is shockingly easy - even for those who have never arm knit.

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  • Hogwarts-Inspired Coffee Sweaters

    You don't need to plan a trip to Hogsmeade to enjoy these Hogwarts-Inspired Coffee Sweaters! This colorful and fun knitting pattern is easy to make, too, so you won't need any special spells to create these beautiful knit gifts.

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  • Knit Coasters in Color

    These are knit flat and with short rows. The edging is added on as a pick-up and knit border. I’ve been making these, or versions of these, for years.

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  • Cable Fringe Bathmat

    Who says your bathroom can't have style? The Cable Fringe Bathmat is the perfect way to give your bathroom a subtle, but decorative, touch.

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  • Knit Triangle Stitch Sunglasses Case

    Keep your sunglasses safe and scratch-free when you create this Knit Triangle Stitch Sunglasses Case! The easy knit pattern is quick to make and includes an intricate triangle stitch that adds a bit of flair to the accessory.

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  • Simple Stripes DIY Pillow Pattern

    The Simple Stripes DIY Pillow Pattern is a beginner knitting pattern that will have you making pillows for every room of your house before you know it.

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Quick Shawl Knitting Patterns

You’ll love how quickly these knitted shawls come together. Shawls (especially lace shawls) have a reputation for being complicated, intricate, and time-consuming, but that's not always the case!

  • 8 Hour Lace Shawl

    Simple yet stylish, the 8 Hour Lace Shawl proves that elegance can be achieved in a hurry. This lovely knit shawl pattern is a light and lacy way to finish an outfit, keep warm in an over-air conditioned restaurant, and give off an air of mystery.

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  • Speedy Arm Knit Shawl

    This Speedy Arm Knit Shawl is ridiculously fast and easy. Using several skeins of super bulky yarn (jumbo would work well too), this arm knit shawl pattern can be done in as little as thirty minutes.

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  • Country Club Shawl

    The Country Club Shawl features a simple lace pattern that most knitters will be able to easily master. By using U.S. size 10 knitting needles, this shawl will knit up quickly.

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  • 8-Hour Lace Shawl Knitting Pattern

    This 8 Hour Lace Shawl is a great knitting pattern that you can whip up in one weekend. This makes a great last-minute gift around the holidays or a prayer shawl for someone in need, and it will definitely get some use.

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Fast Sweater and Top Knitting Patterns

Slipping on a hand knit top is probably one of the most satisfying feelings in the world. You get the warm fuzzies instantly, and it’s a feeling that sticks with you. Show off your knitting skills and keep your fingers busy by giving one of these easy knitting patterns a try. While there are not very many "fast" knitting patterns for tops and sweaters, there are a handful of hidden gems that we've pulled together for this collection:

  • Easy Knit Tank Top Pattern

    The Easy Knit Tank Top Pattern is a great summer knit top that will soon become your favorite. Using a simple stockinette stitch, this pattern works up a basic design with a ribbed pattern along the edge and some detail around the neck.

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  • Life is Ruff Knit Dog Sweater

    Maybe Spot just got surgery, or his fur just isn't warm enough for the chilly weather. Knit him a Life is Ruff Knit Dog Sweater to keep your pooch happy and warm when nature fails him.

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  • 15 Minute Vest

    Take your arm knitting skills to the next level with the 15 Minute Vest. This show-stopping statement piece is sure to turn heads and drop jaws. The 15 Minute Vest features a gorgeous color combo of plum and mustard-colored chunky yarns.

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  • 5 Hour Baby Sweater Poncho

    Ideal for both little boys and little girls, this free baby knitting pattern is perfect for your next baby shower. Imagine how much the mother-to-be will appreciate receiving such a cute and practical gift!

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Quick Hat Knitting Patterns

I feel like hat patterns are overlooked far too often in the knitting world.  I’m always pleasantly surprised at how easy man of them actually are, often all you need to know is how to either increase or decrease, though many people seem to be strangely intimidated by hat patterns.  I’m here to tell you that these easy hat patterns are not only completely manageable, they’re fast.  You’ll be able to knit one of these hats in almost no time at all.  Using bulky yarn means that these patterns will be quick knits, and they’ll keep your head wonderfully warm.

  • Simple Lines Baby Hat

    These basic Simple Lines Baby Hats are great projects for beginner knitters looking for something more advanced than a scarf.

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  • Easy Chunky Pom Pom Hat

    This Easy Chunky Pom Pom Hat is a great hat knitting pattern if you're looking for something fast and easy. The large needles may be a bit tricky at first, but once you get the hang of them, this free knitting pattern will be done in no time, thanks to the super bulky yarn.

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  • Nice and Easy Beanie Pattern

    The Nice and Easy Beanie is a great staple for your cold-weather wardrobe. Slip this easy-fit, neutral cable knit beanie on with any outfit and brave the elements while still looking stylish. This is an easy knitting pattern made with smooth and comfy yarn.

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Fast Sock Knitting Patterns

With the AllFreeKnitting readers, socks are an essential group of patterns to have on hand because they are so quick to knit up! These slippers and socks are some of the best (and fastest) patterns we could find.

  • Grandma's Quick Time

    A classic pattern straight from grandma's knitting needles, these cozy slippers made from the easy garter stitch are just what your tired and achy feet are craving.

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  • One Skein Knit Thick Socks

    Got a skein of yarn? Then you're ready to make these One Skein Knit Thick Socks! These socks will be the perfect antidote to the cold winter weather. If you've always wanted to learn how to knit socks, then this pattern is for you!

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Quick Glove and Mitten Patterns

Fingerless gloves might not leap to your mind when you think “quick,” but these mitts will certainly fly off of your needles.  These straightforward patterns benefit greatly from not quite being gloves; without the fingers to worry about, fingerless gloves are fast project that require only a minimal amount of shaping.  Besides being surprisingly easy, knit mitts are a great thing to have around the house, especially if you live in a cooler climate.  The lack of fingers again pops up as a positive if you decided to knit these as a gift—you won’t have to worry about getting the exact measurements of someone’s fingers.

  • Banded Fingerless Mitts

    Button up with this cute fingerless mitten pattern. The Banded Fingerless Mitts are basic fingerless mittens jazzed up with a fun buttoned wrist band. These mitts would make perfect driving gloves because they offer warmth and easy maneuvering.

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  • How to Knit Fingerless Gloves (in Two Hours)

    If you've ever wondered how to knit a pair of fingerless mittens, this is the pattern for you. Courtesy of this free knitting pattern from Onix Terevinto, you'll be able to whip up a pair of your very own Two Hour Fingerless Gloves in a short amount of time.

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  • Basic Wrist Warmers

    These wrist warmers are fuzzy, soft, and so cozy to wear. Use this knitting pattern to get this look for yourself. They are great for holding hot beverages, such as your morning coffee.

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  • Ice Breaker Ribbed Mitts

    Look cool this winter by donning a pair of these simple Ice Breaker Mitts. This easy pattern for fingerless gloves is a great project to try if you've never tackled making winter mitts before.

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Beanies scarbes

I have extra yarn from a project so some of these small knitting patterns will be great!

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