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Garter Stitch Knitting

How to Knit Garter Stitch and Beyond


When you first learn to knit, the first stitch you learn is Garter Stitch, knitting every stitch of every row. It's simple, easy to grasp and makes a good-looking, non-rolling fabric, but that's not the end of the story.

Ever wonder about different ways to knit Garter Stitch? How to knit Garter Stitch in the round? Shaping? Seaming? Look no further than this great reference to (possibly) everything you need to know about Garter Stitch knitting.

How to Knit

garter stitch
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If you're completely new to knitting, you don't need to learn that much to be able to knit Garter Stitch. Just learn a quick cast on method, try English or Continental knitting, and you're on your way. (Don't forget to learn how to bind off, too!)

Counting Rows and Stitches

garter stitch rows
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The next thing you need to know is how to count rows in Garter Stitch. It's really quite simple once you realize that each ridge of stitches is actually two knit rows.

Shaping Garter Stitch

increasing and decreasing garter stitch
© Sarah E. White, licensed to About.com, Inc.

The bumpy texture of Garter Stitch means that you can use just about any increase or decrease method you like and it will virtually disappear into the surrounding stitches. So use whatever you're comfortable with if a pattern doesn't specify what method to use.

Seaming Garter Stitch

seaming garter stitch
© Sarah E. White, licensed to About.com, Inc.

Sewing up a seam in Garter Stitch isn't any more difficult than mattress stitch on Stockinette, but you do have to approach it somewhat differently.

Garter Stitch in the Round

garter stitch in the round
© Sarah E. White, licensed to About.com, Inc.

Knitting Garter Stitch flat means you can knit every stitch of every row, but things are different when working in the round, because you're working the right side of the fabric every round. Remembering to knit a round and purl a round in Garter Stitch in the round can be tricky if you're used to the mindlessness of flat Garter knitting, but you'll get the hang of it.

Garter Stitch Knitting Patterns

garter stitch knitting patterns
© Sarah E. White, licensed to About.com, Inc.

This page collects my free Garter Stitch knitting patterns for your enjoyment. Also check out my Pinterest board Glorious Garter Stitch for more ideas for using this versatile stitch.

Fixing a Dropped Stitch

dropped garter stitch
© Sarah E. White, licensed to About.com, Inc.
Picking up a dropped stitch in Garter Stitch can be a little intimidating because you have to pick up stitches that look like knits and purls even though the fabric is made just with knit stitches. This method is quick and easy and should take the fear out of fixing a dropped stitch. Just grab your crochet hook and go for it.
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