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How to Read Yarn Labels

A yarn label has tons of vital information. But you need to know how to read the yarn label to understand what information it offers. Pay particular attention to [more…]

Types of Yarn Packaging

Yarn is packaged (or put up) in different forms: balls, skeins (rhymes with canes), and hanks. The differences in yarn packaging shouldn't have much effect on the yarn you choose, but the shape does determine [more…]

How to Wind a Hank of Yarn

If you buy yarn in hanks, you must wind that hank of yarn into a ball to prevent tangling. Winding hanks of yarn is pretty easy, but if you have lots of hanks to wind, ask at your yarn store if it offers [more…]

How to Choose Yarn for Your Project

When choosing yarn, remember that yarns, garment shapes, and stitch patterns must work together for a successful knitting or crochet project. Choosing yarn can be hard when there are so many yarn selections [more…]

Types of Knitting Needles

You can choose from three kinds of knitting needles: straight, circular, and double-pointed. The type of knitting needle you choose depends on how you plan to use it: [more…]

How to Read Knitting Abbreviations

Knowing how to read knitting abbreviations and shorthand becomes easier the more you work with knitting patterns. Common knitting abbreviations and shorthand include RS [more…]

Common Phrases Used in Knitting Patterns

Certain phrases used in knitting patterns can be confusing. Some knitting pattern phrases aren’t as clear as they could be, but experience will make you familiar with them. Eventually, you’ll be surprised [more…]

How to Follow Written Stitch Patterns in Knitting

In knitting, written stitch patterns include punctuation such as commas, asterisks, and brackets (or parentheses). The punctuation in knitting instructions mean more than you may think, however. [more…]

How to Follow Charted Stitch Patterns in Knitting

Knitting patterns come as either written instructions or as charts. Stitch-pattern charts use a square to represent each knitting stitch and a symbol inside the square to indicate how to work the stitch [more…]

How to Knit a Gauge Swatch

When you knit a gauge swatch, you determine if your gauge matches your knitting pattern. A gauge swatch is a small sample that you work using the same pattern, yarn, and needles you intend to use for your [more…]

How to Measure a Gauge Swatch

In knitting and crochet, accuracy counts when measuring your gauge swatch. Before you measure your gauge swatch, wash and block it, if that's what you'd do for the completed project. Next, smooth out the [more…]

How to Cast On with the Two-Strand Method

When you cast on with the two-strand method in knitting, you need only the RH needle. The two-strand cast-on method (or long-tail method) is a great all-around cast-on for your knitting repertoire. This [more…]

How to Use the Cable Cast-On Method

The cable cast-on method, or knitting on, is less elastic than the two-strand cast-on. Use cable cast-on (abbreviated cable co) when you need a sturdy, not-too-stretchy edge or when you need to cast on [more…]

How to Cast On with the Thumb Method

In knitting, casting on with the thumb method is quick and easy, but the thumb cast-on (sometimes called e-loop) doesn’t look as nice as the cable cast-on — and it isn’t easy to knit into. The two-strand [more…]

How to Knit, English-Style

Most knitters in the U.S. use the English style of knitting, as opposed to the Continental style. To knit in the English style, hold the yarn in your right hand, and hold the knitting needle with the cast-on [more…]

How to Knit, Continental-Style

When you knit Continental-style (as opposed to English-style), you hold both the yarn and the needle with the stitches in your left hand. Both methods give you the same results. The important goals are [more…]

Knit and Purl in the English Style

Knitting and purling in the English style is the most common method in the United States. To purl in the English-style, you just work a knit stitch backwards: Instead of going into the stitch from front [more…]

How to Purl, Continental-Style

When you purl in the Continental style, you hold both the yarn and the needle with the stitches in your left hand. Purling (whether Continental or English style) is just like working a knit stitch backwards [more…]

How to Bind Off or Cast Off Knitting

To bind off or cast off knitting, you secure the stitches in the last row worked so they don’t unravel. Binding off and casting off knitting is also called [more…]

How to Knit the Garter Stitch

Garter stitch is one of the easiest and most common stitch patterns in knitted fabrics. You create garter stitch by knitting every row. (You can create garter stitch by purling every row, too. Neat, huh [more…]

How to Knit the Stockinette Stitch

Stockinette stitch is a basic knitting stitch. To knit stockinette stitch (abbreviated St st), you alternate a knit row with a purl row. Stockinette stitch [more…]

How to Knit the Seed Stitch

Seed stitch consists of single knits and purls that alternate horizontally and vertically. Seed stitch gets its name from the texture of the knitted fabric — the little purl bumps look like scattered seeds [more…]

How to Rib Stitch

Knitting the rib stitch creates ribs, or textured vertical stripes. The rib stitch consists of columns of knit stitches alternating with columns of purl stitches. To make a ribbed pattern, you change from [more…]

How to Make a Knitted Yarn Over

A yarn over (abbreviated yo) makes an extra stitch on your needle and creates a deliberate little hole in your fabric. Yarn overs are an indispensable part of lace knitting. They have a multitude of other [more…]

How to Slip Stitches

In knitting-speak, to slip a stitch (abbreviated sl st) means to move a stitch from the LH needle to the RH needle ("slip" it) without knitting or purling it [more…]


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Crafts & Hobbies