Seamless, in the round knitting is great, but the one part about it that often stresses people out is the “join to work in the round, making sure not to twist stitches” part! We’ve all been there, right? You cast-on all your stitches, you check and double-check to make sure you don’t have any twists, but sure enough a round or two in and you discover you did in fact have a twist – arggghhh. This most often happens when you have a lot of cast-on stitches (such as for a long cowl our pullover) as it can be trickier to catch a twist with that many stitches. If you have ever been frustrated by this, I have a tip you can try!
Here’s a tip I learned years ago (from my good friend Suzie!)
Twists happen because, depending on the type of yarn you’re using, it can be tricky to tell if the stitches are all going in the same direction. But if you have a little more fabric on the needles, it helps to keep the stitches all going in the same direction. So here’s the tip – knit 1 row before you join!
After you cast-on all of your stitches (making sure you have a nice length tail leftover, at least 5-6″), do not join right away – knit a row instead:
After you knit 1 row, it will look like this (do not turn work):
Now, you can better see if any of your stitches are twisted! The work lays a lot flatter now so it would be much more obvious if you had a twist. Without turning the work, go ahead and place your marker on the right needle and you can more confidently join for working in the round!
By knitting 1 row before you join, you may be asking – doesn’t that leave a gap at the beginning of the round? Well, yes – but it’s small and easily cinched up with your leftover tail (this is why I mentioned at the beginning to make sure you have a decent length tail).
Lastly, what if your pattern has a stitch pattern to it? For example, if you are knitting my Capo Pullover, you work in a k2,p2 ribbing for the bottom border. In that case, you would still work in the same stitch pattern. You’re basically just working the first round of the pattern before you join instead of joining first and then working the first round. Feel free to reach out if you have any questions though – I’m always glad to help! And a special thank you to my friend Suzie (who I worked with at KnitWit Yarn Shop for many, many years!) – she told me about this trick years ago and it’s such a great tip!