Knitting tutorial: How to Join in the Round

Circular Knitting: How to Join in the Round

Are you spending too much time neatening your joins when knitting in the round? Maybe you’re a beginner, and you’re not sure how to join in the round?

As I get ready to launch the Rainbow Unicorn Hat pattern out into the world, I thought a few simple tutorials might be helpful. And since I was knitting a new hat up, just for the purpose of tutorials, I thought why not start at the beginning? So here we are: I’m going to tell you my favourite way to join my knitting in the round.

Cast On

First things first: Cast on your stitches. In this case I needed to cast on 28 stitches. First trick: I cast on ONE EXTRA stitch, so in this case, I cast on 29 stitches.

First step: Cast on

Join Your Stitches

Next you’re going to have to join those stitches. You always hear “join carefully without twisting your stitches.” That means you need to make sure the edge of your knitting faces the same way all the way around. See those arrows below? The cast on edge of the knitting is inside the circle, while the live stitches (the ones on the needles) are on the outside.  If one of those is twisted around you end up with a mobius strip … and that doesn’t make a good hat!

Join carefully without twisting

Once you’re sure everything is lined up right, take the LAST stitch you cast on off of the RIGHT hand needle (it’s the stitch that has your working yarn coming from it), and slip it onto your LEFT needle.

First and last cast on stitches are on the left needle

Now you’re ready to add a stitch marker to indicate the beginning of the round, and start knitting! Knit both the first and second stitches together as if they were a single stitch. Knit the rest of the round as directed in your pattern (in this case, we’re knitting 1×1 ribbing).

Knit both stitches together

Finishing Up

And that’s about it! Once you’ve knit the second row, you can tug the cast on tail to tighten up the join. Not bad, right? After blocking, it’s typically completely invisible.

Second round

What do you think? It’s a nice simple way to join in the round. What’s your favourite method?

Knitting Tutorial: How to Join in the Round