Binding Off and Weaving in Ends
All right, you've knit, you've learned a bunch of different stitches, you know how to read a pattern, you're feelin' super confident, you've made a project or a swatch and now you're done. So, what now? Well you gotta get the needles off or the yarn off the needles so that is a process called binding off, also casting off, depending where you are geographically, but for here, in the U.S., it's bind off and I'm gonna show you how to do that. So you finish on a wrong side row, so that means that you've knit the wrong side, so if you were to knit again, it would be a right side row. To bind off, you're going to knit the first two stitches then you're gonna use the tip of your left hand needle and you're gonna go to the second stitch, well it's the first stitch on the needle, but the second stitch from the tip and you're gonna lift that stitch over the first stitch and let it drop off and then take it away and you've just now bound off one stitch. So then you knit another one. And you're g...
oing to take your needle and you're gonna let the first stitch drop over the second stitch. Knit the next stitch, lift the stitch over and drop off and you can see how you're creating your little finished edge. So now I'm just gonna continue binding off until the end so you just continue knitting as if you normally were knitting, the only difference is that you pause to let that first stitch drop off that second stitch. You're so close to being done with your first swatch or your first project, this is a pretty exciting process once you're to the bound off stage you're pretty golden. I'm gonna admit you're pretty golden 'cause that means you're gonna have an actual finished object which in knitter speak is another abbreviation, FO, so if you're on the interwebs and you see someone say, I have a new FO, that means a new finished object, that means they've finished a project. And if you see them say, if you see them referencing UFOs, it has very little to do with the new series of X-Files and more to do with unfinished objects. So, now you know what the kids are saying online. Not my particular kids but the kids. My kids think yarn is like hot lava, little sidenote for ya. They're not so into the wearing of the yarn stuff unless it is super duper super super soft, like they have this weird little like neck test that they do where they hold up a ball of yarn next to their neck and see if they deem it unitchable, it's a lot, I'm not gonna kid you, so I knit for other people more. Okay, we're down to the last two stitches. I've just bound off the last one so that means that my left hand needle has zero stitches on it, you're gonna take the stitch, bind it off as normal but then you're here and you've got this one lone little stitch all by itself so you're ready to cut your yarn. Again, as I always say, make sure you leave a long enough tail for weaving in ends. So you're gonna cut it and then you take your needle and just kinda pull a bit so that the loop is big. Set aside your needle and then you just take that tail and feed it through the loop and pull it so it's taut or tight and then so your piece is completely, completely bound off now, you're finished. Yay you did it! All right but now, you've got these kind of like these hangin' out ends and you know if you're into that, like, that's cool, if you're into the whole Boho-chic thing and you want them to hang out loose and easy you should do that but usually if there's ever gonna be a piece that's gonna be worn or washed you wanna weave in the ends just so that you don't accidentally unravel your piece. So this is when you would pick a tapestry needle. I'm gonna use this one. I like the tapestry needles that have this little like curvy action, it just, I mean, it's not like it's laborious without it but it just it makes things easier it goes smoother. So you flip over your piece to the wrong side and you thread your tail through your needle and so we're working in stockinette so you can see you've got all of these rows of bumps on the back so on the back, little fun fact, this would be reverse stockinette, what it looks like on the back so you could also wear it that way. So you're going to just kind of find, I like to go down a couple rows, so I just kind of insert the needle underneath one of the bumps from the purls and kinda bring it through and pull it through, and that's kind of gotten me to the place where I wanna be. So then I'm going to just weave in and out of some of those purl bumps. I know this is hard to see, can you? So you're gonna go, you're kind of just like picking up, this is why the curve works really well 'cause you kind of have to scoop up these stitches. Okay so you're gonna do that for, I don't know, ya know, couple inches or whatever and then you pull it through. If you were just working on a swatch, something that's not gonna be worn, you could probably call it a day right there but for anything worn, I would suggest turning it around and coming back. So maybe going one row down, just find the next purl bump that you feel comfortable with, you're gonna insert that needle again and then you're gonna do the exact same thing but just in the opposite direction and you're just gonna weave in the ends on the way back and this just helps you know, if during the washing process or wearing process, you know, especially if you're pulling something on or off, like if you were making a sweater or whatever, it would be really normal for the yarn to pull and kind of start to come out, so if you've got it going in both directions, you're less likely to have it come undone and unravel. And then I like to take the swatch and kind of like pull it and stretch it so that it settles in where it's going to sit for, you know, as long as it's not worked with a lot and then you just take your scissors and you snip it as close as you can and you've got your ends woven in. This one is actually too short to weave in so you would have to, I would not recommend cutting it this short so what you would do if you accidentally did that, if it's a swatch don't worry about it, I mean, nothing, whatever, no one's gonna wear it but if you had a garment and you accidentally did that, what I would do is I would take the needle before threading it and just weave in and out and then once you get to a point where you're, you know, you've gone that two inches or whatever then I would take the tail and I would put it in through the eye, just sometimes easier said than done and then I would pull it through. Again, not ideal but that happens, right? That's something that's gonna happen. Give it a tug so it's kinda settled as much as it can. You can see, woo, that was close, that was super close. We don't have enough to come back but we're happy that we got it woven in at all and we're good to go. So survival tactics, that's what we all need but you've got it woven in, you've worked on your pieces, you have all of these skills that you can now officially call yourself knitters and I'm super excited about it.