How to Join Yarn in Knitting
Want to learn how to join yarn in knitting? Here is an easy step-by-step guide which you can also use when learning how to add new yarn in knitting and how to change colors in knitting.
As shown in the video below, joining yarn in knitting is a technique used to change the color or size of the yarn and when your yarn reaches an end, you want to join new yarn to continue knitting.
While there are different methods of joining yarn you will only choose what works best for you for a seamless look on your fabric. Let’s see the process!
Table of Contents
Image Source: Utopia
- Knitting Needle
- Yarn (two strands)
How to Start a New Yarn in Knitting
You can start a new yarn from the edge or from any point where your yarn has ended. Nevertheless, here are steps on how to add new yarn to knitting.
Step 1: Leave at least six inches of your old knitting yarn
Step 2: Insert the right needle on the first stitch on the edge.
Step 3: Wrap the new yarn around the first stitch and knit.
Step 4: Hold the old yarn above the second stitch and knit with it to keep the edge firm and seamless
Step 5: Continue knitting with the new yarn until you finish the row
Step 6: Tie the two ends together to avoid puckering and weave them in later.
How to Join New Yarn in Knitting
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Like how to read knitting patterns, joining new yarn in knitting can be challenging but straightforward when you understand the pattern. Here are steps on how to do it;
Step 1: Hold your fabric RS facing you.
Step 2: Ensure you leave at least six inches of the old and new yarn on the left and right side of your knitting needle respectively before joining them. It will help when weaving in.
Step 3: Insert the right side needle in the first stitch on your fabric (Where you want to add new yarn)
Step 4: Hold both ends of the new and old yarn then knit them together as one.
Step 5: Stitch about two to three stitches then drop the old yarn.
Step 6: Turn your fabric and tie the two yarns together to secure the ends until you finish knitting.
How to Add Yarn When Knitting
When knitting, you’ll have to add new yarn to your project because of two reasons:
- To introduce a new color
- To introduce a new ball (after the first)
Here is a step by step guide on how to add a new yarn in knitting
Step 1: Knit the first stitch using the old yarn, then leave around 6 – 12 inches
Step 2: Hold the ends of the old and new yarn and knit them together around the right needle
Step 3: Knit two or three more stitches and don’t mind if they get loose (you’ll fix them later)
Step 4: Drop the old yarn and continue knitting with the new yarn
Step 5: To help secure the ends until you finish knitting, turn your fabric and tie a knot. It will be easy to weave in the ends.
Step 6: K or P the next row across the newly made joint, which is a double joint of both the new and old yarn (ensure you knit the double stitch as one)
Best Way to Join Yarn Knitting
Some knitting projects require only one ball of yarn to complete. However, as the project gets bigger, you’ll need to join more balls of yarn.
Although there is more than one way to do this, most of them depend on preference, type of project, and yarn. Let’s see the best ways you can join yarn in knitting
1. Wet Felting
This method can work on any non-superwash animal fibers.
Step 1: Hold the ends of the new and old yarns you want to join and unwind them to a fan shape
Step 2: Since you don’t want the join to be chunky, thin out some fibers.
Step 3: Dip the ends in water (or wet your hands), then hold the yarn in between your hands and wrap them together until felted. There you have it!
Step 4: Drain the excess water using a paper towel before you knit.
Step 5: Continue knitting as usual, and the knot will be invisible
2. Tie a Knot
It’s the most common type of joining yarn for beginners who are learning how to cast off knitting without a hustle.
Step 1: Hold your fabric on the right side facing you
Step 2: Drop the old yarn from the WS (it’s easier to tie a knot from the back)
Step 3: Start knitting a few sts with the new yarn and tie a loose knot with both yarns.
Step 4: You can weave in the ends later or tie the knot tighter and leave the ends hanging.
3. Russian Join
Image Source: Craftsy
As shown in the above picture, the knot will be invisible.
Step 1: Hold the two yarns that you want to join and loop them around each other.
Step 2: Using a knitting needle, thread the tail of each yarn back to itself and through its core as you trap its tail within it. See this video
Step 3: The join will be neat and undetectable. Continue knitting with the new yarn.
4. Alternate Stitch
You’ll need to knit a complete row or more than ten stitches on your fabric, alternating the new and the old yarn. Although you risk puckering if not careful, this joining method helps in securing the join firmly.
When fixing woven labels, you can use this method both at the edge and in the middle of your knitting project.
Step 1: Remaining with at least 30 centimeters (always leave enough yarn) of the yarn, knit your next stitch with the old ball of yarn.
Step 2: Insert your right side needle under the next stitch on the left, and hold the new yarn with at least 20 centimeters folded over and insert this loop on the end of the right needle as your stitch shown below.
Image Source: Stitchandstory
Step 3: Hoop your right needle with your new loop stitch and slide the other stitch off the left needle.
Step 4: Pick the old yarn up and above the new yarn, and knit the next stitch.
Step 5: Bring the new yarn from below the old one and knit the next stitch
Step 6: Now, the knitting pattern has formed. Continue knitting while alternating between the new and old yarn.
Note: To avoid puckering and twisting, always pick up your old yarn above the new yarn and your new yarn underneath the old yarn.
Step 7: Continue knitting until you finish that row or up to 10 stitches. Then drop the old yarn and knit with the new yarn only.
Step 8: Weave in the loose ends when you finish knitting.
5. Slip Knot
Image Source: The Spruce crafts
Joining yarn is easy and best done at the edge if you know how to cast on knitting.
Step 1: Using your new yarn ball, make a slip knot
Step 2: Insert the right needle under your first stitch on the left needle as shown above
Step 3: Instead of wrapping your new working yarn around the right needle, place your newly created slip knot on your right needle to make the first stitch on that row.
Step 4: Hoop your right needle with your slip knot stitch under and remove the other stitch on the left needle. There you have it!
Step 5: Continue knitting and weave in loose ends after you finish knitting.
Type of Join
How to Start a New Ball of Yarn Knitting
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Starting a new ball of yarn is relatively easy—if you’re learning how to knit a sweater. You can simply tie the old and the new yarn together and continue knitting with the new yarn. You can later untie and weave in the ends. Here are the steps:
Step 1: Tie the two yarns together (best done at the edge) with a loose knot as shown here in this video.
Step 2: Continue knitting as usual with the new yarn
Step 3: When you finish knitting, untie the knots if you know how to weave in the ends knitting or just cut them.
How to Add New Yarn to Knitting Project
Adding a new yarn to a knitting project is easy compared to how to pick up stitches in knitting and follows the below steps:
Step 1: Hold your project on the right side facing you
Step 2: Insert the right needle through the first stitch.
Step 3: Hold the ends of both old and new yarn and knit the next two or three stitches together or knit ten stitches in an alternating method
Step 4: Continue knitting the usual way using the new yarn.
Step 5: Weave in the ends after you have finished knitting
How to Add a Skein of Yarn When Knitting
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You can change the skein of yarn depending on your knitting pattern; after inserting care labels or after the yarn is over, here are the steps on how to add another skein of yarn
Step1: Knit the first stitch using the old yarn, but join the yarn at the beginning of the row if knitting in stripe.
Step 2: Hold the ends of both yarns and wrap them together around the right needle and continue knitting
Step3: Continue to K or P the next sts the same way
Step 4: Knit two to three sts and then turn around your fabric to tie the knots to avoid Pickering. Voila!
How to Add another Skein of Yarn When Knitting
Whether you know how to finger knit or not, adding another skein of yarn when knitting sometimes sounds tiring, especially when you have to repeat it severally in your project. Most beginners don’t like it because they always feel like they don’t know how to do it correctly. But it’s simple! Here are the steps on how to add a new skein of yarn when knitting;
Step1: Ensure you’re remaining with at least six inches of yarn on the left needle.
Step 2: Tie the old and new yarn firmly together (the knot is permanent and cannot loosen up)
Step 3: Continue knitting with the new yarn until you finish and weave in the ends.
Note: The method is used to join eve the new yarn in the factory
How to Tie Yarn Together When Knitting
Remember when you learned how to knit? Yes, you were a beginner and did simple projects like knitting a scarf which you completed with one skein of yarn. As you progress to more significant projects, you’ll use more than two yarns, and that’s why you need to know how to tie them together.
You can use different methods to get a seamless finish on your project despite tying several knots as you knit. Here are a few options.
- The Splice
Image Source: Craftingthroughtime
Here you divide the ends of both the new and the old yarn, spit on your hands or wet them with water, then hold the felted ends and warp them together. The results will be as above.
- In the Round
Image Source: My crafts
If you know how to join knitting in the round, this is simple for you. Leave about four inches of both the old and new yarn, then overlap them together, leaving two inches dangling on each yarn. Continue knitting two to three stitches with both the threads, although they’ll be thicker but non-visible depending on your yarn texture.
- The Knot
Image Source: Shopmartingale
Although knots are discouraged in advanced knitting patterns, there are “professional” ways of doing them.
Tie the tail of the new skein around the end of the old yarn using a loose overhand knot (in case you may need to untie it as you weave in). It will allow you to position your first stitch using the new yarn. The knot will remain at the seams and not visible, yet the continuation of your knitting is superb.
How to Attach Yarn in Knitting
After learning how to start knitting, the next step you will come across is how to attach yarn in knitting because sooner or later, your skein of yarn will reach an end. There are different ways you can join yarn in knitting, like; using a knot, added bulkiness (we shall highlight here), and without any of those, as we have mentioned in the previous procedure. This method blends other ways of attaching yarn in knitting, which is why it’s best.
Step 1: Leave a four—ten centimeters tail of the old yarn and fold the tail of the new yarn like a loop, then insert it around the end of the old yarn
Step 2: Move the fold close to the bottom of the first stitch by pulling the old yarn
Step 3: Knit one or two stitches using both strands of the new yarn.
Step 4: Drop one strand of the new yarn and continue knitting your project.
How to Join New Yarn Color in Knitting
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Want to change your yarn color? Relax. Adding a skein of yarn when knitting is as simple as the other methods above, which we have already covered. Here we go step by step;
Step 1: Continue knitting your fabric up to where you want to have a color change
Step 2: Drop the old yarn and introduce your new skein of yarn.
Step 3: Continue knitting a few more stitches with the new yarn color, then turn the fabric around and tie the ends together.
Step 4: After you finish knitting, you can weave in the ends towards the same color.
Knitting How to Add New Yarn
Adding new yarn is simple than you thought! Here are the methods;
When remaining with at least six inches of yarn, stop knitting and drop the old yarn. Pick the new yarn and continue knitting a few sts. Pause, turn your fabric around weave in the hanging ends using your knitting needle to avoid loosening as you knit. Continue knitting to the end.
With six inches of knitting yarn remaining, untwist the ends of the new yarn and re-twist them with the tail of the old yarn. You will have a secure doubled attachment which you will use to knit until you reach where the new yarn starts. Then continue knitting with the new yarn.
Depending on your yarn texture, you may not need to untwist the ends. Hold the old and new yarn together and knit them as one. Continue knitting using the double yarns on the first row until you reach the new yarn alone. When knitting the second row, knit the double sts as one.
Note: You can use any or all of these methods depending on the size of your project and the skein of yarn you’ll use.
How to Add More Yarn When Knitting in the Round
Knitting in the round looks complicated to beginners and they avoid it a lot! But it’s easy when you practice more. Adding more yarn when knitting in the round is simple, and there are different methods to do so. Here are the most common methods that work on both circular and double-point needles.
Note: Ensure your stitches do not twist and they are facing the same direction. Also, let your working yarn be at the back.
- Put your right side needle through the first stitch on the left needle and slip it as if to purl. Repeat to have two stitches on the right needle.
- Using the left needle, push through the second stitch on your right needle and lift it over the first stitch on your left needle
- The last and first stitch have exchanged places by crossing them as a join. You are done!
- Continue knitting your pattern
- Cast on an extra stitch on the left needle
- Without twisting, knit it together with the stitch next to it
After your yarn is over, continue knitting with the new yarn and later weave in ends. However, you risk having a hole in your fabric! Ensure when joining the new yarn, you knit the next stitch with double yarn (old and new).
Joining yarn in knitting is one of the simplest knitting techniques, although it can be challenging when starting.
The pro tip for a seamless join is mastering your knitting pattern and use the best method that fits it. What joining method do you prefer?