That Loopy Last Stitch

Sometimes, the little tricks are the best ones — simple yet effective.  Here’s one that has cropped up a few times lately in various classes I’ve been teaching.

Actually, I posted this once before, a while ago — at the end of this post, which is way more than you ever wanted to know about binding off.  But it’s a good tip, and since it’s kind of buried at the bottom of that post, I thought I’d bring it back out and let it see the light of day again.

When you’re binding off, and you get to that last stitch, it is often loose and sloppy — because everyone’s last st of a row is loose and sloppy — particularly if you have not used a selvedge technique.

So, when you do finally bind off that final st, it can be pretty loopy and unattractive.  But we knitters are smarter and pickier than that.

To neaten up that last st of a bind-off row:

  1. Work until you have one st left on the LH needle. Slip this st to the RH needle.
  2. Use the LH needle to pick up a loop just underneath the slipped st, and put this on the RH needle.  (There are usually two loops sitting interlocked at the base of the st.  Either one will do, as far as I am aware.)
  3. Slip both this picked-up loop & the original last st back to the LH needle.
  4. Work the loop and the st tog, and bind off the next-to-last st (which has been sitting patiently on the RH needle all along).
  5. Cut yarn and pull the end through the last st.  Be sure to pull it through so that the final st does NOT get twisted — this can add a nice lump to your last st.

There!  much better now!

Happy Knitting!

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