Knitting Techniques

There are many different knitting techniques you can use. Each type of technique results in a different type of look. This page is dedicated to providing basic introductory information about some of the most popular knitting techniques. In some cases, you can click to view a more detailed page about that technique.

Hand Knitting Techniques

Lace Knitting

Lace Knitting Pattern Book by Denise Samson, Published by Trafalgar Square Books

Lace Knitting Pattern Book by Denise Samson, Published by Trafalgar Square Books

The most popular method for knitting lace involves using yarnovers paired with corresponding decreases to create small eyelets, or holes in the fabric. These eyelets can be arranged in different patterns to create interesting designs. The yarnovers can also be combined with other types of stitches to create many different lace effects.

Denise Samson has written a helpful introduction to the topic of lace knitting. Her Lace Knitting book, published by Trafalgar Square Books, includes a lovely selection of lace knitting stitches and lace knitting patterns. If you want to learn more about lace knitting, this book would give you a great foundation in getting started with the technique.

Cable Knitting

Cable knitting is a technique in which knitted stitches are transferred from their current position to a different position, crossing over or under each other to create interesting textured patterns. The patterns could include braids, lattices, rope-like textures or other textures in the fabric.

Fair Isle Knitting, Also Known as Stranded Color Knitting

Fair Isle is a sparsely inhabited island in northern Scotland. This small island is world-famous for its beautiful knitting technique, which involves knitting patterned designs in the round using two colors of wool yarn per row.

Some knitters insist that authentic Fair Isle knitting patterns only originate on Fair Isle, and that patterns made elsewhere should be called “stranded colorwork patterns”. However, it seems that most of the knitting public didn’t get that particular memo.

There are many wonderful references available on the topic of Fair Isle knitting and stranded colorwork knitting. My current favorite is The Alterknit Stitch Dictionary, a book which teaches you the technique plus gives you bunches of charts and patterns for making projects using the technique.

Slip Stitch Knitting

Mosaic Knitting

Mosaic knitting is a type of slip stitch knitting, but it isn’t exactly the same thing. To learn about mosaic knitting, I recommend The Beginner’s Guide to Mosaic Knitting: Knit Spectacular Blankets, Shawls and More

Bead Knitting

Bead knitting is knitting incorporates beads. You can use this technique for making beaded jewelry, beaded bags, beaded edgings, beaded shaws, beaded eveningwear or many types of projects.

Freeform Knitting

Freeform knitting is knitting that doesn’t follow a written pattern or, in fact, any pattern; it isn’t necessarily done in orderly rows or rounds.

Rag Knitting / Fabric Knitting

Rag knitting is knitting that’s done with rag balls or fabric strips rather than yarn. You can make rag purses, rag baskets, rag rugs and many other types of projects.

Wire Knitting

Wire knitting is knitting that’s done with wire instead of yarn. You can use this technique for making jewelry, baskets, sculpture and other types of projects.

Chevron Knitting

There are infinite possible ways to knit a chevron pattern. Some of the most popular methods involve using pairs of increases and decreases to make undulating patterns that are known as chevrons or zigzags.

Sock Knitting Techniques

See our page on sock knitting for information about the most popular sock knitting techniques we’re aware of.

Loom Knitting Techniques

Loom Knitting Books by Nicole F. Cox, Published by Stackpole Books

Loom Knitting Books by Nicole F. Cox, Published by Stackpole Books

If you’d rather knit using a loom than hand knitting needles, loom knitting is the technique you’d want to learn about. In that case, I recommend Round Loom Knitting in 10 Easy Lessons and Amazing Loom Knits for a couple of great books that will teach you what you need to know about loom knitting.