How to Knit | Binding Off and Decreasing

Last week I gave you what you needed to get started on your hat patterns. Do you have a partially knitted hat sitting in front of you ready to finish!? I hope so! Today I’ll be giving you all the tools necessary to finish your first knit project up. I’m so excited!! I hope you’ll all be sharing your projects with me over on my Facebook page so I can see how you did.

There are multiple methods of binding off (or finishing) your project when knitting. Each has a different look, and a best time to use it. I want to start by showing you the Traditional Bind Off method. This is a method that you’ll find in many, many flat projects. Anything like a wash cloth, a blanket, sometimes hats, etc. may use this method. If you are knitting one of the three recommended patterns, this is not the method we’ll be using to finish those off. However, I do think it is very important to learn how to do this method as it is the most common one that you’ll find in many patterns. I want you to leave these tutorials knowing the ins and outs of knitting – not just how to knit a few of my patterns. Check out and practice (at some point – please DON’T practice on your hat!) this method.

So…now that we have that formality out of the way (and posted somewhere you can come back and reference when you need it), let’s work on finishing up the hats that we started! Yay!!!

To finish both the Ribbed Pixie Hood and the Valentine’s Day Bonnet, you’re going to need to know how to do the Three Needle Bind Off method. Now don’t get scared! We only use a third needle for a few minutes, and it is actually quite simple. You’ll need either a third needle of the same size, or one a size larger than the needles that you’re currently knitting your project on (I recommend going a size larger so you don’t have to buy a second set of the same size needles). This video should have everything you need to know! If you are working on the Kerchief pattern, you won’t be using this method, but it doesn’t hurt to watch it anyways. This post will be here to reference later on when you may need this bind off method as well.

For those of you working on the Ribbed Pixie and Valentine’s Day Bonnets – CONGRATS! You are about to finish your first project! Don’t jump the gun and run to your knitting quite yet though….like I said above, I want you to be a well rounded knitter after following this tutorial….so wait just a minute and learn about decreasing.

The most common decrease in knitting is called a K2tog or a P2tog. That means knit 2 stitches together or purl 2 stitches together. This is VERY simple. Those of you knitting the Summer Kerchief pattern are going to get a lot of good practice at decreasing. Check it out here:

So that’s all the information you need to finish your projects and to do most projects that are knit flat. I’m going to take a break from posting new segments for a couple of weeks so you can get more comfortable with the skills we’ve already learned. Feel free to knit the other two projects that I recommended during that time, or find another project that you like. There is a huge database of free patterns listed on Ravelry. You can search through and find projects that are “worked flat” to practice on as well. When I get back with the next segment, I’m going to talk about knitting in the round – what you’ll need and how to do it.

Happy Knitting!