‘Learn to Knit’ MINI SERIES, Week 3: The Bind Off / Weaving in the Ends

I’m absolutely loving learning how to knit.
(Knitting series found here)
I have had the same problem as some of you and feel like I need to keep things tight.  But Rebecca’s advice is to just relax and think “loose”.  And she’s right…….it’s a lot easier when I loosen everything up.
Are any of you first timers completely pleased at your little knitting needles as they are stitching away?
I totally am.
And my washcloth is uneven and a bit messy……but hey, it’s coming along.  And that makes me a bit proud.  So pat yourselves on the back if this is your first time knitting…
But oops, I don’t have my 8 inches yet, but I’ll sit down tonight and show that washcloth who’s boss.  And then finish it off using this next lesson below.
Thank you Rebecca.  I’m completely enjoying this……and I know others are too!
Howdy-do knit-a-roos! How’s that knit stitch going? Have you gotten up to 8” yet? I know it might not feel like it now as you stress out if you are doing everything right, but I promise the more you knit, the more relaxing it will get. I go into a happy little meditative space when I am knitting, I know that you will get there soon, too.
This week I am going to show you how to finish off that washcloth.
When you are ready to end a project it is called binding off. We’re going to learn the most common form of bind off and then we are going to learn what is every knitter’s least favorite task: weaving in the ends.
You will need a tapestry needle and some scissors this week.
Let’s bind off! Grab your knitting and knit the first 2 stitches of the row as usual
Grab the first stitch you knit with your left-hand needle
And pull it OVER the second stitch. Make sure to pull your needle out of the stitch once it is pulled over the first one.
You will have one stitch on your right-hand needle now.

Knit the next stitch of the row, so you have 2 stitches on your right-hand needle again

And pull the first stitch over the second stitch, so you only have one stitch on your right-hand needle again. You don’t need this very tight, remember to kind of loosen up. If you do it too tight you can end up with a piece that is smaller on one end than the other.

Repeat this across the row: Knit one, pass over, knit one, pass over, until you have one stitch left on your right needle and can’t go any further (see that nice “chain” along the top edge? That’s what you want)

At this point cut your yarn, leaving an 8-12” tail

Then simply pull the end through the last loop

Pull it tight so it creates a nice little knot.

Tah-Dah! Finished washcloth. Now we need to hide those pesky ends. You never want to tie a knot in your knitting when weaving in the ends. If you weave in an end and it gets loose, you can just weave it back in. If you tie a knot and it comes loose, there’s no end to weave in and you are stuck with a tail that can lead to unraveling and bad things. I know knots are easier, but no knots!
You always want to weave ends in on the backside of your work, but since both sides are the same here, just pick a side. Grab your tapestry needle and take a look at your washcloth. Can you see how the yarn runs through the stitches? That’s the path we are going to follow to weave in the ends.

Thread one of the ends through your tapestry needle

Follow the path of the yarn up

Around and back down

Back up

Around and down

Keep doing this until you’ve worked about 6” of tail into your washcloth and then cut your yarn fairly close

What end?

Repeat the same thing on the other end

Huzzah! Finished washcloth!

Alrighty, I’ll be back next week for lots of fun with the Purl stitch!
Not getting my in-stills? Check out an in-action version instead: I like this binding Off video (although she is knitting using the English method holding her yarn in her right hand, so just watch how to slip the stitches over the other stitches) and this weaving in the ends video.

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Filed under Knitting, Mini Series


14 Responses to “‘Learn to Knit’ MINI SERIES, Week 3: The Bind Off / Weaving in the Ends”
  1. 1
    Korey says:

    I'm a self taught knitter and never learned how to "properly" weave in the ends…Thanks so much for the great lesson today! ;D

  2. 2
    Malori and Jon Saline says:

    I am seriously so excited about this knitting series! I'm excited to weave in the ends of my little wash cloth! As soon as I master this knitting thing, I have some big plans for some matching sweaters – my husband actually said that he would wear one and take pictures with me if I made them! So now I am really determined to get the hand of this new skill!

  3. 3
    HOMEmomMADE says:

    this is a series I'll def have to bookmark. Wouldn't you now one of my munchins has lost/hidden my other needle.

  4. 4
    Allison says:

    Okay, I totally knitted my washcloth way too tight compared to her pictures :/ So it's taking me forever to get to 8"! But now I know for my next one!

  5. 5
    Angie says:

    I'm so glad everyone else is finding that the knitting is too tight! I kept thinkgng "Geez! I can barely get my needle through the stitch!" I'm going to ease up, and try again!

  6. 6
    Brett and Ashley says:

    Mine is also a little uneven and messy but so much fun to make! I'm looking forward to practicing before learning purling next week!

  7. 7
    Brianne says:

    Yea! Mine is finished! It was too tight in the beginning and I picked up an extra 2 stitches in the beginning before I figured out that some yarn is supposed to be left hanging there at the end of the row. Oops. But now I know. Overall it looks great. I'm going to make another one before we start purling next week. Thanks!

  8. 8
    Rebecca Danger says:

    Hey every one: Yeah! I'm glad to hear there is knitting success happening!

    You are all right, the hardest part of starting to knit is to figure out your tension. If you notice how loose mine is, I am a super loose knitter (my washcloth is actually a little looser than I would like, but I know it will shrink with use since it is 100% cotton). I generally have to use needles much smaller than recommended because of my looseness (is that appropriate to say?).

    I think a big part of it is that you are so focused on doing it "right" at first that it comes out tight. I know as you all work it a little more you will loosen right up.


  9. 9
    alli.raw says:

    yay! i've been so excited to learn how to knit! love the pictures although when i was getting yarn practically knotted around my fingers the videos were SUPER helpful. thanks again for putting this amazing mini series on!!!

  10. 10
    managed exchange says:

    Thanks for that tutorial!

  11. 11
    Andrea says:

    It's done! It might have a little gape (or 3) in the beginning, I did something wonky for one stitch while binding off, and my tension definitely varies throughout the wash cloth, but it's done! And my little angel won't even know the difference when she uses it. I'll have to make another one for extra practice and I'm so looking forward to purling next week. :)

  12. 12
    Hillary says:

    Haven't checked your site lately and when I saw this post I couldn't believe you were KNITTING TOO…..then I saw the pics and realized those are NOT your thumbs hehe. Love your site!!! (And your thumbs are great!)

  13. 13
    Becky H. says:

    I just am learning how to knit too. My friend/teacher is showing me how I have successfully done one. Now while she is on vacation I did another, but I couldn’t remember how to cast off. I was so glad that I remembered this miniseries because after reading through I was able to finish washcloth #2 with no help….Thanks!!!