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Edge Treatments: How to Knit a Picot Hem

Liat Gat - Founder

December 2, 2011

Create a decorative hemmed edge at the beginning of your project: a clever row of k2togs and yarnovers creates "picots" where the fabric folds. This makes a decorative, finished edge where you would normally see the raw cast-on. Great for top-down socks.

Knitting a picot hem builds what you learned in the basic hemmed edge tutorial, but this time we use a simple YO-K2tog combination to make a scalloped “picot” edge.

This is a technique that is done starting on the cast-on edge, so a little bit of planning ahead is needed – i.e. know that you are going to use this edge before you cast on.

You can replace any ribbed or rolled edge in your pattern with this picot hem – just delete the first 6 rows of the pattern and use this cast-on instead.

Here’s how to do it (written instructions below the video):

KNITFreedom - The Picot Hem: How To Knit A Picot Edge
KNITFreedom - The Picot Hem: How To Knit A Picot Edge

Knitting a Picot Hem:

CO using the long-tail cast-on.
Work in Stockinette st for 5 rows.
Next row: YO, K2tog across.
Work in Stockinette st for 5 rows.
Next row: fold knitting at lace row and knit each stitch on the needle together with the purl bump from the cast-on row in the column directly below the stitch.

A great sock pattern to try that uses a picot hemmed edge is Swirly-O Socks by Amy King (below), from the Knitter’s Book of Yarn by Clara Parkes.

Related Tutorials:

If you liked this video on how to knit a picot hem, post in the comments!

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12 thoughts on “Edge Treatments: How to Knit a Picot Hem”

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    1. Elias - KnitFreedom Customer Happiness

      Hi Linda-Claire,

      Sorry for the trouble there.
      I am sending you an email in order to assist you.


  1. Thanks so much for the video! I wish I had watched it and read your instructions before starting (I am starting a pair of fingerless- gloves), because my stitches were much too tight. It’s ok, I restarted and it worked! Thanks so much!

  2. Hi Liat
    Many thanks for the video. If using as edge for a sock, will the top be stretchy enough?.
    Just have learned your two at a time magic loop toe up. Wonderful. Thanks

  3. Thanks Liat!
    This looks great! I just finishes a pair of socks…but now I cant wait to start another pair, just so I can make this beautifully stretchy bind off. I love your videos!

    1. Hi MaryElizabeth, I’m so glad that you’re excited about the Picot Hem! I can’t wait to hear how your next pair of socks turns out. Thank you so much for the sweet compliments. :)

      Happy Knitting.

  4. I wanted a change from the regular K2P2 cuff for sox without getting into too difficult or time consuming an edge. Thanks for the perfect explanation. The video was wonderful!

    1. Hi Merry –

      You are too sweet. I’m so glad that my video could help you get the change you were looking for for your socks. :) You’re more than welcome for the explanation!

  5. love the picot edge.. never used it before.. am working on magic loop and don’t understand how to finish off the seam after the last five rows of the picot edge.. on the magic loop.. any help would be greatly appreciated !!
    thank you soooo much !

    1. Hi Anne, after you knit the last five rows, you fold the fabric and knit the working edge together with the cast-on edge, as I show in the video. This technique is for starting the garment, so you would then keep knitting until you got to the top of your sweater or the toe of your socks or whatever and then just follow the pattern instructions for finishing off the garment like normal.

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