Knitting Help – Double Knitting

Double knitting is a way of creating a piece
of knitting that is flat on both sides. Meaning you never see the purl bumps from
anything. It’s the V knit stitch on both sides. And it’s a pretty interesting technique. I’m going to show you how to do it with
two colors, so that you end up with a look that’s like this, where it’s the opposite
on the two sides. First, let’s take a look at this piece here. This is a Harry Potter book scarf, is what
it’s called, a Harry Potter bookmark. And if you want to find this pattern, it’s
not my pattern, but if you want to find this pattern just search for Harry Potter and “book
scarf” on Ravelry and I’m sure you’ll find it. But this is a good way of showing you what
double knitting looks like. We have the flat knitting on this side, in
these colors. Ravensclaw, which I did an online quiz and found out that was my house, and
then everything’s the opposite on the other side. The technique’s pretty cool. We’re going
to go through that right now. I have two colors of yarn here, and I’m
using worsted weight yarn and size ten and a half needles. Ideally, I would want to use smaller needles
with this weight of yarn, but because I’m demonstrating I’m going to use these bigger
needles. To cast on, make a slip knot out of both strands
of yarn together. And we’re going to alternate – whoops.
What I really need to do is make my slip knot further down because we’re using a long
tail cast on. There we go. I’m going to alternate each color using
the long tail cast on. And if you need a review of the long tail
cast on, I’ll give you a link right here. I’m going to start with this cream color
and cast one on, and then switch to the blue. And then the cream color. And the blue. And you want to cast on an even number of
stitches. You’ll follow your pattern. How many do I have here? That’s one. The
first one counts as one because that’s double stranded. So that’s two, four, six, eight, nine – and
nine is fine, because the last stitch that I cast on I’m going to do double stranded,
like that. Okay, you have to remember that the first
and last are double stranded, that counts as one, and each one between is just single
stranded. Now when you start this, you start a row,
you always slip the first stitch as if to knit. I should tell you, there are a lot of different
ways of starting double pointed knitting with different cast ons. This is just my preferred
way. Now I’m going to knit the next stitch. You
see that I have a blue there? With both strands of yarn in back I’m going
to knit the blue. Now I’m going to pull both strands forward,
and purl the cream color. Both strands back to knit the blue. And forward to purl the cream color. [cough] Now I’m glad I didn’t cast on very many,
because this is kind of slow going. The last stitch of every row, you always purl.
Double stranded – remember. Okay, that is what the rows look like. We’ll do this next one. You always slip the first stitch knitwise,
double stranded. And then you’ll see that my first stitch
here – the next stitch is always knit. And I have to knit with the cream color this
time. Both strands forward to purl with the blue. Both strands back to knit with the cream. Sometimes I can really get on a run with this
where I’m holding the yarn just right, and I don’t have to keep separating the two
strands. Okay, and then the last stitch you always
purl, and hold it double stranded. Now what we have here is kind of hard to see
because, like I said, I would want to use smaller needles if I was really working on
a project. But we have a cream side and a blue side. And it’s knit on both sides. Now when we’re looking at a pattern like
this – well, this effect would give me a solid, um, strip of knitting with no pattern
in it, of course. When you’re looking at something like this,
it’s pretty interesting the way this works. You see the first two rows here are done just
like I did, then the pattern starts. And when I knit this book scarf, this comes
in a chart that you’ll be reading. So the first one is knit the gray, and then
you would purl the blue. Because whatever happens on this side, the opposite happens
on this side. And when you’re knitting this side and purling
the opposite stitch, the purls become this side. Does that make sense? [laughs] So, whatever you see on the chart, like this
is gray, blue, blue, blue, gray, gray, gray, blue, blue, blue. When you knit a gray, you always purl a blue. When you knit a blue, you always purl a gray. Knit a blue, purl a gray. Knit a blue, purl
a gray. Knit a gray, purl a blue. So it becomes kind of a mind twister while
you’re doing it. Because the chart only shows one side, and
the opposite side is just the opposite of what you’re doing. Whatever color you knit on this side, you
purl on the other side. It’s pretty fun. It’s kind of a brain
twister like I said, it keeps you on your toes. So you won’t be drinking any wine while
you’re doing a chart in double knitting! [laughs] But it is a pretty fun technique. [music]

99 thoughts on “Knitting Help – Double Knitting

  • Thank you for taking the time to make this video and post it! I learned how to double knit a while ago, but I forgot how to do the sides…this helped me tremendously. 🙂

  • Yes – there are patterns out there that use this technique for knitting in the round – for hats, cowls, etc.

  • Thank you sooooo much for uploading this very enlightening tutorial, I seriously had an epiphany while watching and all of a sudden the whole double knitting thing stood clear to me…!

  • If you're referring to the fact that you have two balls of yarn going at once – they will twist up. You just have to keep untwisting them, and/or make sure that when you're turning the work, it's clockwise, then counter-clockwise, then clockwise again, each time. Any time you have two balls of yarn going, you have to work on this.

  • Does double knitting create thick clothing? If yes, can I use this method to create scarf(for starters) with 2 contrast lace yarns? I mean, I don't want my scarf to go way too thick.

  • Yes, double-knitting creates a double-thick fabric…use accordingly! You can use any weight of yarn, including lace yarn, with this technique.

  • Doing this technique in entrelac would be very tricky – I'm not even sure if it is possible. I don't know of any patterns out there for double-knitting entrelac…I'd search Ravelry if I were you. Good luck!

  • I wanted to make a double knitted tab for some baby legwarmers in one color, because I'm knitting in lace weight and I want it to be a little more substantial. Plus I like the look of the fabric this way. How would you keep track of the front and back strand? Also, how would you manage decreases to create a point?

  • It is pretty easy to see the difference between the front and back strand – the front are knit stitches, and the back are purl stitches. Plus, they alternate. As far as decreasing goes – not sure. I haven't tried this myself, but thinking it through in my head, I believe you're going to want to decrease by combining a front and back stitch…but now I think it through further, and it's not going to look right. I would actually need to test knit this to figure it out, sorry! 🙂

  • I have only tried this once or twice and for some reason one side always looks awful. One side is so pretty with nice even sized stitches and the other is horrid! Do you have any tips for keep both sides looking even and pretty?

  • The two sides of double knitting are worked identically – I can't see a reason why you would have one side looking differently from the other. The only suggestion I can make is to focus on good tension while you work, it should improve with practice! Good luck.

  • You always make things clear. Love your videos and your sense of humor too. Practice will not make mine perfect, but will make it easier and hopefully better.

  • Good tip about not drinking wine and knitting – I learned not to drink wine and run the sewing machine. Much harder than driving.

  • Is it possible to double knit with a pattern that is not written to be double knit? I have a one sided scarf I am working on that is beautiful, but it would be great to do it double knit so it's reversible! It is pretty simple with increase, decrease, yo's. How does double knitting work with those stitches, if at all?
    (Love your videos! So clear and easy and the best around!)

  • How do I cast off this kind of work? is there a special way casting off or just finish with the regular cast off but double?

  • If you're following a pattern, you'll want to use the directions there for binding off, but otherwise your best bet is to knit two together across as you BO, so that the BO is as many stitches wide as one side of the knitting. Hope that helps!

  • After you cast on the stitches, you say "double pointed knitting"? I guess you meant "double knitting". Great tutorial!

  • No – you can do a regular long-tail or knitted cast on for Brioche Stitch, at least the way that I teach it. You can watch my video called "Knitting Help – Brioche Stitch" for full instruction, as well as a free downloadable pattern.

  • Can you please do a video on either double knit mittens or at least how to do a 2×2 rib with this technique? Thanks 🙂

  • What if I wanted to knit a normal striped zig-zag blanket, but have it look the same on both sides? How would I do that?

  • For that, I recommend knitting it in-the-round, then seaming up the top and bottom openings once you're finished. This also works well for making scarves that are stockinette on both sides.

  • First, knit a swatch, get your gauge. Determine the width you want your blanket to be. Use your gauge swatch to decide how many stitches that is, double it (for both front and back), and cast on that number. Knit your blanket in a tube, as long as you want it to be, then cast-off. Once you seam together half of the cast-on row to itself, and the same with the BO row, you will have a double-sided blanket, stockinette on both sides.

  • Is there a reason to double knit something wide? It seems like it would be easier to knit in the round. Would it lay differently?

  • Hi Staci! Thanks for this video! Do you think it would be possible to make a double sided scarf with a linen stitch? 

  • Where is the link to the exact bookmark you described? I find all kinds of links and purposed items – but not the same cool harry bookmark?!

  • @muzakaz The bookscarves pattern can be found here:

  • Can you explain WHY your first two stitches are black followed by white, but every other pair of stitches is white followed by black?

  • I used this technique to knit a wide Star Wars scarf! I find as long as you fallow the pattern, mark off what row you complete and use stitch markers it is easy to do. I think it makes for a nice thick warm scarf. 🙂

  • Well this explains how grandma does her double knit mitts.  The mother-in-law and I just couldn't figure it out.  Thanks

  • Thank you for this video! I tried and tried to do double knitting but I just couldn't get it. I also have no experience using charts! I was getting so frustrated until now! It was like a light bulb went off in my head! The way I finally was able to get it was that I used worsted weight yarn and size 4 needles for practice! Wow, I can't get over the fact that I'm Double Knitting! Thank you Staci!

  • I am new to double knitting so even if it kills me I am making all 4 of these! I love Harry Potter. Thank you Staci, I love all of your videos.!

  • hello there, this looks awesome to do but would i have to do this type of technique for 3 or 4 colours in the work?

  • As always Staci, I love your videos!  Thank you for showing all of us a new useful technique to help advance our knitting!  I have been knitting since 2012, and my knitting has really advanced more since I have watching your videos!  Thank you very much and keep up the good work.

  • hi staci! you mentioned using larger needles for this demo – what size needles would you normally use for this project?

  • can anyone tell me is this technique creating a piece of fabric that is two layers rather than one, I don't understand why it's called double knitting lol. sorry I'm still new to the knitting scene

  • Hi Staci, first of all thank you so much for the great tutorial! Only I get tension issues holding both strands of yarn in one hand (I'm a continental knitter) and I don't want to change the color every time when alternating knit/purl stitches. I tried holding the strand for the purls on the index finger and the strand for the knits on the thumb but that's no acceptable solution, either. Could you give me a piece of advice here please? Thanks a lot in advance!

  • I loved your comment on the end about not drinking wine but I also kind of want to take it as a challenge accepted (jk). I also greatly appreciated the fact that you used that specific pattern for the demonstration because I am knitting it as a gift for a friend. Thanks for the video!

  • Hi Staci,Do you think you could do a video on how to double knit mittens? My father has been asking me to make him a few pairs.

  • Is there a difference between this and fair isle? I mean both have design, but fair isle knitting has floats, so this should be better?

  • Thank you! I just bought a kit for the 11 Burato scarf by sockmatician! Kind of a new knitter, I love fair isle and this looks like my next challenge. Thank you for all your videos! You taught me how to knit two years ago. I’m mostly housebound secondary to an illness and knitting is a huge part of my life now! Thanks again!

  • Do you have (or know of anyone else you could recommend) a video that demonstrates how to double knit a patter with more than two colors?

  • I love your video's! I want to know how to knit double knitting in the round. Do you have something?

  • I still don't understand. Can you do a short video on how to actually make the checkerboard? I can do the single sided pattern, but when I have say a side where I would knit the greys and purl the blues, if I purl the greys and knit the blues, I get purl bumps on one side. I'm very discouraged because I've watched a zillion double knitting videos, bought Extreme Double Knitting, and I still just don't get it.

  • I think I've seen a lady knit two socks at a time (one inside the other) on one set of needles in this manner.

  • Do you think you can do this with Entrelac? You know how entrelac (which I learned using your video ❤️👍🏼) has a ws and a rs? We’ll do you know of a way to do entrelac like this so that both sides look the same? I’ve been trying but I am pretty new to knitting and I just can’t grab the concept.

  • If when you're casting on, if you pull your yarn for the next stitch in between the other ends you you'll end up with alternating colors on the cast on edge.

  • Great help, thanks. Quick question: I need to seam together 2 pieces of double knitting, should I use 2 strands of yarn or just 1?

  • I'm wondering about the "double stockinette stitch." Can you do a picture pattern from that? It consists of only 2 stitches: knit & slip. The slip stitches don't show up and you only see the knit stitches. Just wondering…..

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