Anchors Aweigh: Nautical Knits

When you think of nautical-themed clothing, you probably picture kids in navy blue sailor suits with ridiculously huge collars. Thankfully, nautical knits don’t always have to give us nightmares about our childhood school pictures.

Modern nautical knits still have some elements of traditional sailor clothing. They might be knit in navy blue and red colors, and they probably have stripes and cables. You might even spot an anchor or two.

We’ve rounded up some of Craftsy’s classiest nautical knits, from hats to baby clothes and sweaters.

Drop your anchors — errr, needles — on some of these fun nautical knitting patterns.

Girl with Braids Wearing Striped Hat with Gold Buttons

Nautical Knits Pattern Collection

This collection includes three different nautical-themed patterns, including this sailor slouch, a yacht club scarf, and captain’s mitts. Wear all three together for the ultimate nautical look, or separately for just a little touch of the sea.
Get the patterns.

Striped Baby Sweater, Red Baby Booties and Shoes

Nautical Baby Cardigan Pattern

Outfit your little captain in these classic nautical stripes. The cardigan can be worn alone or brought along to wear over another outfit in case of a sudden drop in temperature. You can also easily customize the look using buttons of your choice. Wouldn’t some little gold anchor buttons be adorable down the front of the cardigan?
Get the pattern.

Knitted Baby Dress and Knit Hat

Baby Sailor Dress Pattern

Pair this traditional sailor-collared baby dress with a matching cap. Knit it in traditional sailor colors — white and navy blue — or put a twist on it with the colors of your choice. Add some matching tights and baby will be able to wear it through early fall.
Get the pattern.

Woman Modeling Red Cable Sweater on Boat

Sailor’s Valentine Hooded Cardigan Pattern

It can get chilly when the wind blows out there on the sea. Stay warm with this cardigan that combines three different types of gorgeous cables all in one sweater. If you’re knitting the sweater for a man, replace the side ribbing with seed stitch for a less fitted look.
Get the pattern.

Sailor-Themed Knit Shirt

Sailor Blouse Pattern

This blouse is inspired by traditional sailor collars. Knit it in a cotton if you want to wear it in warm-weather months, or knit it in a wool and layer it for colder weather. Intimidated by the neckline? No worries. This pattern comes with a step-by-step photo tutorial that shows you exactly how to attach it. There’s also an option to add bust darts.
Get the pattern.

Woman Wearing Striped Knit Shirt

Dolman Tunic Pullover Pattern

This pullover takes a traditional boatneck off the shoulder just a bit for a loose, comfortable fit. The ease also makes this top perfect for breezy beach days. Choose from this sailor-stripe version or a three-color ombre version for a less traditional nautical look.
Get the pattern.

Want even more nautical knits? The Turns and Twists of Aran Sweater Design blog post explains how fishermen inspired Aran sweaters and showcases some of Craftsy’s best Aran patterns.

If you want to make sure your nautical knits — and any other knits for that matter — fit perfectly, check out Amy Herzog’s Knit to Flatter to learn how to alter sleeves, hems, necklines, and more that fit your exact body type.

Can’t get enough of the nautical theme? See also our posts on nautical sewing projects and patterns and nautical quilts!

Have you ever knitted a nautical-inspired pattern? What did you make?

One Comment


On the point of nautical colours and variations…
Ganseys (Traditional British fishermen’s jumpers) although many were different shades of dark blue were also dark shades of green or brown and even black and charcoal depending on where they were from. It wasn’t just the patterns that determined the place or origin.
The colours were always dark though so as not to show the muck from working as much as lighter colours would. Old black and white pictures fcourse don’t pick up different colours and as blue has become traditionally the nautical colours many of the colours are lost to the knitter.


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