Basket Stitch Pillow

Learn the basket stitch and take your knitting to the next level, then turn it into a pillow for your couch or bed.

| August 2018

  • knit-pillow
    Choose any color for your yarn and get started on your pillow today!
    Photo by Lesley Unruh,
  • knitting
    "Japanese Stitches Unraveled" is filled with a variety of stitches knitters of any level can try.
    Courtesy of Abrams

  • knit-pillow
  • knitting

In Japanese Stitches Unraveled (Abrams, 2018) by Lesley Unruh, readers can expect to find knitting stitches and plenty of projects to tackle. There are easy to follow diagrams and step-by-step instructions for beginners to use. Find this excerpt in Chapter 1, “Knits and Purls.”

Sometimes it’s fun to deviate from garment knitting and work on an item for your home instead. These pillows are quick knits; to make these “your own,” all you have to do is select a favorite stitch pattern, make a swatch to find your gauge, and then determine the number of stitches you need to cast on for the width of your pillow form. The next step? Just keep knitting and stretching your knitted piece over your form, bind off when it’s the right length, and work another piece for the back (or find a piece of fabric for the back). Then sew the two pieces together, leaving a space to insert your pillow form, and close it up. Add an optional attached I-cord, and you’re good to go!

Finished Measurements

13” (33 cm) square


  • Blue Sky Fibers Organic Cotton (Skinny) [100% certified organic cotton; 150 yards (138 meters) / 21/2 ounces (65 grams)]: 1 hank #314 Gravel

Note: You will need to purchase a second hank if you make a double-sided pillow.


  • One pair straight needles size US 5 (3.75 mm)
  • One pair double-pointed needles size US 5 (3.75 mm), for optional I-cord
  • Change needle size if necessary to obtain correct gauge.


  • 14” (35.5 cm) square fabric backing (optional), sewing machine or sewing needle (optional), matching thread (optional), 13” (33 cm) square pillow form


  • 17 sts and 32 rows = 4” [10 cm] in Small Basket Stitch, washed and blocked

Common Decorative Pillow Sizes

If you’re unsure of what size pillow to knit, the most important thing to remember is that pillow dimensions always refer to the pillow cover’s width and length while laying flat, unstuffed. The measurements are always taken along the seams from corner to corner.

Square Shape

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