How to Join Yarn in Knitting

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When you’re knitting away, you’ll eventually run out of yarn. At that point you need to start the next ball of yarn with a knitting technique called joining yarn. Join a new ball of yarn on an edge that will be enclosed in a seam whenever possible. If you can’t do that, then at least try not to start a new ball of yarn on an edge that will be exposed.

To join yarn at an edge, you can use either of these methods:

  • Knit the first stitch of the next row with both ends held together, drop the old strand, and carry on.

  • Knit the first few stitches with the new yarn only, stop, and tie the two ends together temporarily in a bow to secure them.

Either way, leave the ends at least 4 or 5 inches (10 to 13 centimeters) long so you can weave them in later with a yarn needle.

If you run out of yarn in the middle of a row, your options are the same: Tie a temporary knot with both yarns, leaving 4- or 5-inch (10- to 13-centimeter) ends; or knit the next stitch with both strands, drop the old one, and continue knitting from the new ball.

[Credit: Photo © iStockphoto.com/Rubén Hidalgo]
Credit: Photo © iStockphoto.com/Rubén Hidalgo

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