How to Knit a Vertical Buttonhole
A vertical buttonhole is stretchier than a cast-off horizontal buttonhole. You work each side of the vertical buttonhole with a separate ball of yarn. Test the buttonhole opening with the width of your button to know how many rows to work to achieve an accurately sized buttonhole.
A vertical buttonhole is often worked in 1×1 ribbing and 2×2 ribbing. When worked in a rib, a vertical buttonhole is easily camouflaged in the purl trough. However, this style of buttonhole can also be worked in seed stitch and garter stitch, both of which create a nice clean edge for the buttonhole.
1Row 1: RS: Work in 1 x 1 rib pattern to the position of the buttonhole.
End with a knit stitch, ready to work a purl stitch. The purl stitch should be in the center of the buttonband.
2Purl into the front and the back of the next (purl) stitch.
Increasing 1 stitch in the purl trough allows for each side of the buttonhole to be edged by a purl stitch on the RS. If you’re working in a 2×2 rib, garter stitch, or seed stitch, no increase is needed.
3Continue in the rib pattern to the end of the row.
Work in 1×1 rib to the end of the buttonband or row. If you’re placing this vertical buttonhole in a garment you’ll need to work in 1×1 rib to the end of the buttonband and then in the garment pattern to the end of the row.
Row 2: WS: Work in 1×1 rib to increased stitch. You’ll notice two knit stitches (this is where you have increased) with a purl stitch on either side. Note: If you’re placing this vertical buttonhole in a garment you will need to work in garment pattern until you reach the buttonband. Work in 1×1 ribbing until you have reached the increased stitch.
4Work Row 2 in the rib pattern to the increased stitch.
There will be two knit stitches with a purl stitch on either side.
5Knit the increased stitch.
The increased stitch is the first of the two knit stitches.
6Attach a second ball of yarn, knit the second knit stitch, and then work in 1x1 rib (or stitch of choice) to the end of the row.
Begin with k1.
7Row 3: RS: Work in 1x1 rib to the where the first ball of yarn is attached.
Use first ball of yarn to complete 1×1 row. Note: If you’re placing this vertical buttonhole in a garment you’ll work in garment pattern to the end of the row.
Repeat Rows 2 and 3 as many times as needed for the right size buttonhole.
8Close the buttonhole.
On a RS row, purl the 2 stitches at the top of the hole together. On a WS row, knit the 2 stitches at the top of the hole together.