Hand-knits for babies are one of the loveliest handmade items you can create. They’re welcomed as great gifts, made with love for a new arrival, and they can be passed on to other babies – or even the next generation – once they’re outgrown.
Knitting baby clothes and toys is also satisfying because small items knit up quickly, and they’re just so cute!
When picking patterns for babies, bear in mind that new parents generally want machine-washable yarns; when you’re sleep-deprived there’s no time for handwashing!
The patterns are by reputable designers and can be found on the websites of yarn manufacturers, craft suppliers and the designers themselves. Each of these sites offers more free patterns, as well as patterns to purchase.
Some of the patterns are in PDF form, so you need to download them, unless you like to knit in front of your laptop. You can open the PDF, then save it on your computer, or save it directly to your computer, then open it. (You need to have Adobe software to view a PDF file. Download the free software here.)
Beautiful bunny pattern
A lovely alternative to a teddy bear, this gossypium cotton rabbit toy, designed by Erika Knight, is knitted in garter stitch, and its shape is achieved simply by decreasing and increasing. It’s finished off with an embroidered face, pom-pom tail and a smart ribbon bow.
Download the knitted bunny pattern without registering.
Colourful koala pattern
This charming koala character wearing a mini knitted scarf and stripy jumper would make a lovely keepsake for a child. You'll need to register with LoveCrafts for the pattern but there are so many free knitting patterns available you're bound to find a lot more knits to keep you entertained.
Download colourful koala knitting pattern
Cosy snowflake blanket pattern
This intricate blanket uses a snowflake pattern that looks absolutely gorgeous in pastel shades of pink, blue and yellow.
ownload the knitted blanket pattern.
Shaun the Sheep scarf pattern
This is an adorable scarf and mitten set featuring Aardman creation Shaun the Sheep, first seen in Wallace and Gromit before getting his own CBBC series.
Bootees with bows pattern
Known for her novelty knits, designer Susie Johns has also written books on papercraft, jewellery-making and embroidery. These ribbon-tied bootees are so pretty, and they’re a great way to use up your yarn stash, as you can knit two pairs from one ball of yarn.
Knitted in garter stitch, so it’s suitable for beginners, the pattern comes in three sizes: three to six months, six to nine months and nine to 12 months.
You'll need to register on the Let’s Knit website – free – to download the bootees with bows PDF pattern.
Mungo, Stella and Archie character patterns
This trio of whimsical characters designed by Grace Jones would be ideal for gifting to young siblings or cousins. The designs are fox, cat and bear variants of the same style, and are perfect for an experienced knitter. You can download without registering, although registering allows you to save all your favourite patterns.
Download the pattern now
Newborn lamb and blanket set pattern
This adorable neutral blanket and cuddly lamb is perfect for a new member of the family. Download the pattern for free from Deramores or buy a set with the yarn needed to complete it along with the pattern.
Download the lamb and blanket pattern
Tiny bootees pattern
These turned-over cuff booties, knitted in fluffy Sirdar Snuggly Snowflake Chunky yarn, are soft and cosy for bare baby feet (also includes three other shoe patterns), and they’re a ‘one-ball wonder’, taking a single ball of yarn. The pattern (which includes three other shoe and bootee patterns) comes in three sizes: newborn to six months, six to 12 months and one to two years.
Download the booty pattern without registering.
Cute hat and cardigan set
This gorgeous Grace knitted hat and cardigan set comes with guidelines for making it to fit ages 9 months, 12 months and 24 months.
Download the hat and cardigan set.
Huggable hoodie pattern
Keep a little one cosy with this striped raglan-sleeved hoodie, designed by Martin Storey, an influential knitting designer who learnt to knit at primary school. It’s worked in stocking stitch using three yarn colours. The pattern has three sizes: newborn to three months, three to six months, six to 12 months, and 12 to 18 months, and includes left- and right-hand buttoning details for girls and boys.
Download the hoodie pattern from McAree Brothers without registering.
More free knitting patterns
There are plenty of resources online for free knitting patterns for babies, children and adults, here are some of the most popular sites with a wide range of free patterns available.
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