According to Ravelry, these are the specs for this yarn
Meterage 125 yards(114 meters)
Unit weight 50 grams (1.76 ounces)
Gauge 22.0 sts = 4 inches
Needle size US 6 - 4.0 mm
Hook size 4.0 mm (G)
Using 4mm needles (which isn't a bad size to learn on), we could cast on 66 stitches to get approximately 12-inch wide cloth? Knit both ways for 12 inches. Count your stitches and discover if you have the same number as when you started. If it's close (or even if it isn't) pat yourself on the back and cast off.
If it wasn't superwash, I'd use size 9 needles and cast on 15 inches worth of stitches. Knit enough rows to make it 15 inches the other way. Then toss the thing in the washing machine until it shrinks down and then stretch it into a square as needed.
I've actually made a hot pads that way as Christmas presents. I also make them a little over twice as long and fold them over and sew the sides to use as oven mitts, but that's a bit more complicated.
With super wash, I'd go down a needle size to size 5 needles (so it's tighter/denser) and cast on however many stitches would make 10 inches. Keep knitting until it's a square, and then done! Since it's wool, it'll do a nice job of protecting the table from the hot pot/pan/teapot/etc.
If you want, I can pick up some of the same yarn and do a test hot pad. I can use the remaining wool for a hat or mitten for my kids.
These are my felted ones (you can tell I use them a lot, and should probably throw some in the wash!). These are the fold-over type, so I can put my hand in them to grab things out of the oven. They are my favorite oven mitts (the green and blue one I actually made for my grandmother, and when she moved into a retirement apartment, she passed it on to me ♥)
(I just took this picture, and since it's night, I only had the bathroom available to take the picture in--it's the only place where the light wouldn't wake the kids. Anyway, sorry about the poor lighting. The colors are dark purple and olive green, LOL!)
I know you were asking for knitting patterns but since you want something for a hot pad I liked to do Tunisian Crochet for some of mine. If you have never heard of it there are plenty of youtubes to show how to do it. It makes me think of a cross between knitting and crochet, and makes a nice dense weave. Even if you have never crochet it is easy to learn. I know you said you were a beginner but once you get a little experience you could try double knitting. It also makes a thick fabric and as long as you are doing a simple design it is not much harder than single knitting. Loveknitting and Bluprint both have free patterns to try. Good luck and have fun.
Nicole Alderman wrote:
I've actually made a hot pads that way as Christmas presents. I also make them a little over twice as long and fold them over
This is exactly what I have done knitting hot pads (with cotton garden twine). Measure out how big you want it, double it lengthwise, and when you're done sew the two sides together (so it is double thick). I do a simple stockinette stitch because I LOVE stockinette (have been knitting for a million years but stockinette is my favorite stitch. Simple things, right). I have never knitted with real wool so I assume you would make it bigger than you want it and then expect it to shrink in the wash/block process. I also assume making it with wool means there's no point getting fancy with stitches/patterns, since it will just felt up anyway.
I am a newer crocheter than knitter but have been makign my dishcloths/hot pads from crochet recently, they seem to be a bit more resistant.
Here are some easy ones that I like. Just knit and purl stitches and they are not to hard to adjust the size on if you want to make them bigger. If using for a hot pad you might want to use two of them if something is really hot.