• Kat Zimmermann

Quick & Thick Cabled Hot Water Bottle Cozy

Updated: Jan 1


A cream wool cabled hot water bottle cozy with ribbing at the top sitting on a bright blue rubber hot water bottle.

When I was growing up, my mother put the fear of God into me when it came to electric heating pads. It was ok to use them, but never for too long and NEVER when you planned to fall asleep. Electric blankets? Absolutely not. The risk of fire was too high!


As an adult, I still carry that fear, no matter how advanced electric heating for personal comfort has become. But I'm still cold in the winter and sometimes need a little dose of heat for aches and pains - enter that all time classic: the hot water bottle.


I purchased my rubber hot water bottle a few years ago and typically use it at least a few days every month. In the winter, I fall asleep with it just about every night. When I travel for work, it's a warm substitute for the lack of dog in the bed. Every time I use it, I've had to wrap it in a towel or be sure there are enough layers of clothes between the rubber and my skin to avoid burns. I was clearly in need of a water bottle cozy and what a perfect application for my first skein of handspun yarn! So I whipped up this pattern and am quite satisfied with the results.


Important note: The pattern is available FOR FREE below. However, if you would like a fully written out version of the pattern (no abbreviations), different versions of the chart, or just a plain pdf version to pull over to your phone, you can purchase this pattern in my Ravelry or Etsy store.


Click here to jump to the pattern!



Q: What do I need for this project?

A: To make a water bottle cozy, you will need:

  • Yarn - see notes below

  • 6mm circular or dpn needles or whatever size is needed to meet the gauge

  • Crochet hook (for the provisional cast on)

  • Cable needle (or an additional dpn)

  • Tapestry needle

  • Snips

  • Stitch marker(s) - optional but recommended



Work in progress: A cream wool cabled hot water bottle cozy sitting on a bright blue rubber hot water bottle. To the side, the remaining ball of yarn in a blue ceramic yarn bowl.

Q: How long does it take to make?

A: This project took me about 7 hours to complete from start to finish. Of course, time spent will vary depending on your own knitting speed, tension, and comfort with cables. As far as knitting projects go, this one is pretty quick which makes it a great last-minute handmade gift.



Q: How difficult is this pattern?

A: This is an intermediate pattern which requires the following skills: provisional cast on, knitting in the round, cables, knit, purl.


If you are an advanced beginner, this is a good choice to boost your skills. On a scale of 1-10 where 1 is "I can do a basic cast on and knit stitches" and 10 is "Knitting Master," this cozy is probably about a 4 or 5.



Q: What size is the finished cozy?

A: This pattern is sized to fit a hot water bottle measuring about 8 inches wide and just under 13 inches from bottom to nozzle top (the bottle in the photos was purchased here).


Be sure to check your gauge before starting and remember to make any pattern adjustments ahead of time. See the note below on adjusting for size.



Q: I need an accessible version of this pattern in order to knit it - how can I get a copy?

A: Several accessible version of this pattern is available as part of the purchased bundle on my Ravelry and Etsy stores. If you were already planning on purchasing the pattern, great! If not and you need a specific version in order to access the pattern, please send me an email at craftematics@gmail.com - free patterns are free for everyone.


 

Tips, Notes, & Learnings



A ball of very lumpy handspun yarn in a cream wool. Part of the yarn is wrapped around a ruler to illustrate the 8-9 wraps per inch.

(Yarn & Needles) For the example shown, I used my very first skein of handspun yarn. Since it was my first skein ever, it was quite lumpy! As a result, the sizing was a bit difficult which is part of why I wrote this pattern in the first place (the second reason being I really like playing with cable designs).


The final yarn had about 8-9 WPI (wraps per inch), meaning it is technically a bulky yarn (weight 5). What I recommend is beginning with a bulky yarn and 6 mm needles and checking your gauge in stockinette. Adjust as needed to make sure your final cozy will fit the hot water bottle in question. Not sure how to adjust? Check out my post on Gauge here.


How much to buy? My finished cozy used 5.5oz (155g) and about 130yd (119m) of yarn. When in doubt, by the extra skein and keep the receipt.


Consider your fiber as well. The yarn used here is 100% wool. Wool is a good choice as it's very insulating which means the bottle can be filled with the absolute hottest water and still be held next to the skin safely. The wool will also keep the water warm longer, meaning fewer trips to the kettle.


While it may not be possible to use wool yarn, I do recommend choosing a natural fiber or a wool blend. Why? Some bottles can get very hot - in this case, it's possible the cozy could start deforming and changing its shape. Most of the time, this will not be an issue, but better safe than sorry! Avoid this problem and keep cost down by going with a wool or natural fiber blend which will raise the melting point of the fiber.



(Adjusting for size) Not every hot water bottle will be identical in size (although many are). You may also need to adjust the cozy size based on gauge or yarn being used, particularly because this pattern was made using my first (lumpy) handspun.


Check out my post on Gauge here for instructions on how to change the number of stitches or needle size based on your gauge swatch.


If your horizontal (number of sts) gauge is spot on but vertically you're coming up short, no worries! When you finish round 46, instead of moving on to round 47 as written, begin repeating from Round 21 and onward until the cozy is tall enough to reach the top of the bottle. Once you've got the height needed, go ahead and move on to the ribbing.



 

Hot Water Bottle Cozy Pattern


Abbreviations

CO - cast on

k- knit

p- purl

st - stitch

cn - cable needle

Cables - see below


Notes on reading cable abbreviations:

  • All cable abbreviations can be read as "number by number, direction cross."

  • The first number is how many stitches will go on your cable needle.

  • The second number is how many stitches you will knit or purl from the regular needle.

  • RC means Right Cross while LC means Left Cross

  • If F is included, for example 1/2 RFC, it means Front. This is there as a reinforcer that yes, the smaller number of stitches goes in the front of the cable.

  • If P is included, for example 2/2 RPC, it means Purl. After grabbing the first stitches for the cable needle, you will purl rather than knit from the regular needle.

  • All abbreviations are available in the downloadable chart for reference.

Example: 1/2 RPC - one by two right purl cross (see below for steps).



A close-up of the cables on the finished hot water bottle cozy.

1/1 RC - sl 1 st onto cn, hold in back, k1, k1 from cn

1/1 RPC - sl 1 st onto cn, hold in back, k1, p1 from cn

1/1 LPC - sl 1 st onto cn, hold in front, p1, k1 from cn

1/2 RC - Sl 1 st to cn and hold to back, k2, k1 from cn

1/2 LC - Sl 2 sts to cn and hold to front, k1, k2 from cn

1/2 RPC - Sl 1 st to cn, hold to back, k2, p1 from cn

2/1 LPC - Sl 2 sts to cn, hold to front, p1, k2 from cn

2/1 RFC - sl 2 st onto cn, hold in back, k1, k2 from cn

1/2 LFC - sl 1 st onto cn, hold in front, k2, k1 from cn

2/2 RC - sl 2 sts onto cn, hold in back, k2, k2 from cn

2/2 RPC - sl 2 sts onto cn, hold in back, k2, p2 from cn

2/2 LPC - sl 2 sts onto cn, hold in front, p2, k2 from cn


Find abbreviations confusing? Download a fully written-out version of this pattern from my Ravelry or Etsy stores! The download also includes additional versions of the chart.


Note: Cable abbreviations adapted from those by the Craft Yarn Council. Chart and written instructions created using Stitch Fiddle.



Gauge

12.5 sts = 4 inches

18 rows = 4 inches

In stockinette.

Always check your gauge!


This pattern is sized to fit a hot water bottle measuring about 8 inches wide and just under 13 inches from bottom to nozzle top (the bottle in the photos was purchased here).



Pattern

Setup

CO 28 sts using a provisional CO.

Using circular needles or dpns, k across, pick up and knit on the other side of the provisional CO (56 sts on needles). Continue below, working in the round. Use a stitch marker to indicate the beginning or end of each round.


Cables - begin chart - note that all even round are knit your knits and purl your purls.

The chart is at the bottom of the pattern and is downloadable (right click or long press).

Round 1: p6, k4, [p3, k2] 2 times, k2, p12, k4, [p3, k2] 2 times, k2, p6 (56 stitches) Round 2: p6, k4, [p3, k2] 2 times, k2, p12, k4, [p3, k2] 2 times, k2, p6 Round 3: p6, (2/2 RC), p3, (1/1 RC), p3, (2/2 RC), p12, (2/2 RC), p3, (1/1 RC), p3, (2/2 RC), p6 Round 4: p6, k4, [p3, k2] 2 times, k2, p12, k4, [p3, k2] 2 times, k2, p6 Round 5: p5, (1/2 RPC), (2/2 LPC), (1/1 RPC), (1/1 LPC), (2/2 RPC), (2/1 LPC), p10, (1/2 RPC), (2/2 LPC), (1/1 RPC), (1/1 LPC), (2/2 RPC), (2/1 LPC), p5

Round 6: p5, k2, p, [p2, k3] 2 times, p3, k2, p10, k2, p, [p2, k3] 2 times, p3, k2, p5 Round 7: p4, (1/2 RPC), p3, (2/1 RFC), p2, (1/2 LFC), p3, (2/1 LPC), p8, (1/2 RPC), p3, (2/1 RFC), p2, (1/2 LFC), p3, (2/1 LPC), p4 Round 8: p4, k2, p4, [k3, p2] 2 times, p2, k2, p8, k2, p4, [k3, p2] 2 times, p2, k2, p4 Round 9: p4, k2, p3, (1/1 RPC), (2/1 LPC), (1/2 RPC), (1/1 LPC), p3, k2, p8, k2, p3, (1/1 RPC), (2/1 LPC), (1/2 RPC), (1/1 LPC), p3, k2, p4 Round 10: p4, k2, p, [p2, k] 2 times, k2, [k, p2] 2 times, p, k2, p8, k2, p, [p2, k] 2 times, k2, [k, p2] 2 times, p, k2, p4

Round 11: p4, k2, p3, k, p2, (2/2 RC), p2, k, p3, k2, p8, k2, p3, k, p2, (2/2 RC), p2, k, p3, k2, p4 Round 12: p4, k2, p, [p2, k] 2 times, k2, [k, p2] 2 times, p, k2, p8, k2, p, [p2, k] 2 times, k2, [k, p2] 2 times, p, k2, p4 Round 13: p4, k2, p3, (1/1 LPC), (1/2 RPC), (2/1 LPC), (1/1 RPC), p3, k2, p8, k2, p3, (1/1 LPC), (1/2 RPC), (2/1 LPC), (1/1 RPC), p3, k2, p4 Round 14: p4, k2, p4, k3, p2, k4, p3, k2, p8, k2, p4, k3, p2, k4, p3, k2, p4 Round 15: p4, (2/1 LPC), p3, (1/2 RC), p2, (2/1 LC), p3, (1/2 RPC), p8, (2/1 LPC), p3, (1/2 RC), p2, (2/1 LC), p3, (1/2 RPC), p4

Round 16: p5, k2, p, [p2, k3] 2 times, p3, k2, p10, k2, p, [p2, k3] 2 times, p3, k2, p5 Round 17: p5, (2/1 LPC), (2/2 RPC), (1/1 LPC), (1/1 RPC), (2/2 LPC), (1/2 RPC), p10, (2/1 LPC), (2/2 RPC), (1/1 LPC), (1/1 RPC), (2/2 LPC), (1/2 RPC), p5 Round 18: p6, k4, [p3, k2] 2 times, k2, p12, k4, [p3, k2] 2 times, k2, p6 Round 19: p6, (2/2 RC), p3, (1/1 RC), p3, (2/2 RC), p12, (2/2 RC), p3, (1/1 RC), p3, (2/2 RC), p6 Round 20: p6, k4, [p3, k2] 2 times, k2, p12, k4, [p3, k2] 2 times, k2, p6

Round 21: p5, (1/2 RPC), k2, p2, (1/1 RPC), (1/1 LPC), p2, k2, (2/1 LPC), p10, (1/2 RPC), k2, p2, (1/1 RPC), (1/1 LPC), p2, k2, (2/1 LPC), p5 Round 22: p4, [p, k2] 2 times, [p2, k] 3 times, k, p, k2, p10, [k2, p] 2 times, [p, k, p] 2 times, [p, k2] 2 times, p5 Round 23: p4, (1/2 RPC), p, (1/1 RC), p2, (1/1 LPC), (1/1 RPC), p2, (1/1 RC), p, (2/1 LPC), p8, (1/2 RPC), p, (1/1 RC), p2, (1/1 LPC), (1/1 RPC), p2, (1/1 RC), p, (2/1 LPC), p4 Round 24: p4, [k2, p2] 2 times, [p, k2, p2] 2 times, k2, p8, [k2, p2] 2 times, [p, k2, p2] 2 times, k2, p4 Round 25: p4, (2/1 LPC), p, (1/1 RC), p2, (1/1 RPC), (1/1 LPC), p2, (1/1 RC), p, (1/2 RPC), p8, (2/1 LPC), p, (1/1 RC), p2, (1/1 RPC), (1/1 LPC), p2, (1/1 RC), p, (1/2 RPC), p4

Round 26: p4, [p, k2] 2 times, [p2, k] 3 times, k, p, k2, p10, [k2, p] 2 times, [p, k, p] 2 times, [p, k2] 2 times, p5 Round 27: p5, (2/1 LPC), k2, p2, (1/1 LPC), (1/1 RPC), p2, k2, (1/2 RPC), p10, (2/1 LPC), k2, p2, (1/1 LPC), (1/1 RPC), p2, k2, (1/2 RPC), p5 Round 28: p6, k4, [p3, k2] 2 times, k2, p12, k4, [p3, k2] 2 times, k2, p6 Round 29: p6, (2/2 RC), p3, (1/1 RC), p3, (2/2 RC), p12, (2/2 RC), p3, (1/1 RC), p3, (2/2 RC), p6 Round 30: p6, k4, [p3, k2] 2 times, k2, p12, k4, [p3, k2] 2 times, k2, p6

Round 31: p5, (1/2 RPC), (2/2 LPC), (1/1 RPC), (1/1 LPC), (2/2 RPC), (2/1 LPC), p10, (1/2 RPC), (2/2 LPC), (1/1 RPC), (1/1 LPC), (2/2 RPC), (2/1 LPC), p5 Round 32: p5, k2, p, [p2, k3] 2 times, p3, k2, p10, k2, p, [p2, k3] 2 times, p3, k2, p5 Round 33: p4, (1/2 RPC), p3, (2/1 RFC), p2, (1/2 LFC), p3, (2/1 LPC), p8, (1/2 RPC), p3, (2/1 RFC), p2, (1/2 LFC), p3, (2/1 LPC), p4 Round 34: p4, k2, p4, [k3, p2] 2 times, p2, k2, p8, k2, p4, [k3, p2] 2 times, p2, k2, p4 Round 35: p4, k2, p3, (1/1 RPC), (2/1 LPC), (1/2 RPC), (1/1 LPC), p3, k2, p8, k2, p3, (1/1 RPC), (2/1 LPC), (1/2 RPC), (1/1 LPC), p3, k2, p4

Round 36: p4, k2, p, [p2, k] 2 times, k2, [k, p2] 2 times, p, k2, p8, k2, p, [p2, k] 2 times, k2, [k, p2] 2 times, p, k2, p4 Round 37: p4, k2, p3, k, p2, (2/2 RC), p2, k, p3, k2, p8, k2, p3, k, p2, (2/2 RC), p2, k, p3, k2, p4 Round 38: p4, k2, p, [p2, k] 2 times, k2, [k, p2] 2 times, p, k2, p8, k2, p, [p2, k] 2 times, k2, [k, p2] 2 times, p, k2, p4 Round 39: p4, k2, p3, (1/1 LPC), (1/2 RPC), (2/1 LPC), (1/1 RPC), p3, k2, p8, k2, p3, (1/1 LPC), (1/2 RPC), (2/1 LPC), (1/1 RPC), p3, k2, p4 Round 40: p4, k2, p4, k3, p2, k4, p3, k2, p8, k2, p4, k3, p2, k4, p3, k2, p4

Round 41: p4, (2/1 LPC), p3, (1/2 RC), p2, (2/1 LC), p3, (1/2 RPC), p8, (2/1 LPC), p3, (1/2 RC), p2, (2/1 LC), p3, (1/2 RPC), p4 Round 42: p5, k2, p, [p2, k3] 2 times, p3, k2, p10, k2, p, [p2, k3] 2 times, p3, k2, p5 Round 43: p5, (2/1 LPC), (2/2 RPC), (1/1 LPC), (1/1 RPC), (2/2 LPC), (1/2 RPC), p10, (2/1 LPC), (2/2 RPC), (1/1 LPC), (1/1 RPC), (2/2 LPC), (1/2 RPC), p5 Round 44: p6, k4, [p3, k2] 2 times, k2, p12, k4, [p3, k2] 2 times, k2, p6 Round 45: p6, (2/2 RC), p3, (1/1 RC), p3, (2/2 RC), p12, (2/2 RC), p3, (1/1 RC), p3, (2/2 RC), p6


Round 46: p6, k4, [p3, k2] 2 times, k2, p12, k4, [p3, k2] 2 times, k2, p6 **Round 47: p6, k4, [p3, k2] 2 times, k2, p12, k4, [p3, k2] 2 times, k2, p6 **Round 48: p6, k4, [p3, k2] 2 times, k2, p12, k4, [p3, k2] 2 times, k2, p6


A cream wool cabled hot water bottle cozy with ribbing at the top. The ribbing is fully extended, showing that the ribbing is about the same length as the rest of the cozy.

**If more rows are needed to reach the top of the bottle, begin repeating from Round 21 for Round 47 and onward until the cozy is tall enough to reach the top of the bottle.


End of chart.




Ribbing and Finishing

Row 49 - end: [k2, p2] around until ribbing is long enough to cover the nozzle when folded in half (about 50 rows).


Bind off and weave in ends.





Chart - the chart repeats twice around, once per side of the cozy:

Cable chart for the hot water bottle cozy. See the written instructions above.


 


An antique spinning wheel with newly added wooden footman. A basket of wool sits to one side. In the background, books, tiny pumpkin amigurumi, and a rainbow steel colored skull.

That's all, friends!


I hope you enjoy this pattern and share photos of your creations here in the comments and on Instagram!


Be sure to follow me on Instagram and subscribe to the blog by filling out the form at the bottom of the page. Thanks for reading!


Bonus preview photo: The spinning wheel fully restored in all her glory!

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