Bind-Off Tips and Tricks

Neaten the Last Stitch of Your Bind-Off (Flat Knitting)

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Neaten the Last Stitch of Your Bind-Off (Flat Knitting)
bind-offs

You should be doing this easy bind-off trick at the end of every project. See the results for yourself below – I think you’ll agree.

This is a simple move to neaten the last stitch of your bind-off every time you finish a project.

It’s a little superstar trick that you do at the very end that will square up your edges, especially if your side stitches tend to get stretched-out.

Neaten the Last Stitch of Your Bind-Off (Round Knitting)

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Neaten the Last Stitch of Your Bind-Off (Round Knitting)
bind-offs

This bind-off trick for knitting in the round totally changed by life. Make the last stitch invisible? It’s a no-brainer.

Every single time you’re binding off in the round, use this trick to make the join completely disappear.

No one will be able to tell where you started and where you stopped.

Undo Your Bind-Off Stitches

If you don’t like the look of your bind-off, or if you did it too tight, you can always undo it.

Just work back, one stitch at a time, removing the bind-off and putting the stitch back on your needle.

 

Standard Bind-Offs

Standard Bind-Off

This is a beginner bind-off that is the basis for most of the bind-offs in this dictionary.

This bind-off is moderately stretchy. It is good for Stockinette stitch fabric and you would it use when you’re just learning how to bind-off or any time you want a basic, no-fuss edge.

Suspended Bind-Off (Variation)

This is a fast and easy bind-off that is based on the Standard Bind-Off and is a bit stretchier.

Its main benefit is that it can help your stitches come out more evenly if you have trouble getting a good, even tension on the Standard Bind-Off, especially if the difficulty you have is binding off too tight.

Decrease Bind-Off

This is an easy, medium speed bind-off. It’s about as stretchy as or a little stretchier than the Standard Bind-Off.

One benefit to this bind-off is that it might help you with your tension, because it’s one of the few bind-offs that doesn’t require you to lift one stitch over another other stitch.

I chose to put this bind-off in the course because it’s a nice building block for some of the more complicated bind-offs.

Crochet Bind-Off

This is a medium-fast, medium difficulty bind-off that matches the Chain Cast-On.

Elastic Bind-Off

This is a fast bind-off which I really like.

It’s a good stretchy bind-off for beginners. To be more exact — it is very stretchy for binding off on Stockinette stitch, and moderately stretchy on ribbing.

It also looks decorative, which is unique and unusual for the standard bind-offs.

Icelandic Bind-Off

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Icelandic Bind-Off
bind-offs

This is a fantastic stretchy bind-off that even many advanced knitters have not heard of.

It’s one of the three stretchiest standard bind-offs (the other two being the Elastic Bind-Off and EZ Sewn Bind-Off).

It’s also amazing for Garter stitch.

Braided Rib Bind-Off

This is a very easy bind-off.

It’s fast and firm and it does not roll, especially if you block it.

The thick braid gives it a simple but decorative look. It would be really nice on the edge of something like a potholder or a dishcloth where you don’t need a stretchy edge and you’d prefer the bind-off to lay flat.

EZ Sewn Bind-Off

This is a very stretchy sewn bind-off that’s good for beginners. This was famously Elizabeth Zimmerman’s favorite stretchy bind-off (which is what the “EZ” stands for)

It’s great on Garter stitch.

This bind-off is very stretchy but, importantly, bounces easily back into shape. Nobody likes a stretched-out bind-off.

 

Stretchy/Ribbed Bind-Offs

2×2 Invisible Ribbed Bind-Off

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2×2 Invisible Ribbed Bind-Off
2×2 Invisible Ribbed Bind-Off - youtube Video

In-Pattern Bind-Off for 1×1 Rib

This is a fast, easy bind-off that is minimally stretchy when used on ribbing.

It’s the same thing as the Standard Bind-Off “top” variation, done by alternating knit and purl stitches to make an edge that faces up.

I would consider it “required reading” for beginning knitters.

Jeny’s Surprisingly-Stretchy Bind-Off (JSSBO) for 1×1 Rib

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Jeny’s Surprisingly-Stretchy Bind-Off (JSSBO) for 1×1 Rib
(JSSbind-offs

This is an intermediate bind-off for ribbing that is super stretchy. It is not blazingly fast, but it’s faster than most of the other stretchy bind-offs out there.

This bind-off, also called JSSBO, is a heavy-duty bind-off that stretches out — yes — surprisingly far, and then, accordion-like, springs back into shape. It does this feat better than many other stretchy bind-offs, which either flare when un-stretched or stay stretched out once stretched (and nobody wants that).

Jeny’s Surprisingly Stretchy Bind-Off (JSSBO) for 2×2 Rib

This bind-off is very stretchy, with moderate-to-high bounce back, which means it won’t stay stretched out but rather it will bounce back into shape nicely. This bind-off is bulky, especially on 2×2 rib.

It leaves a pronounced edge with a chain of stitches zigzagging along the top.

Yarnover Bind-Off

This is an intermediate bind-off that is super stretchy.

Here’s how it works: After every two stitches that you’re binding off you add one stitch — a yarnover — and then bind it off.

The theory is that when you add more stitches to your bind-off it becomes stretchier. You can even add the yarnover in between every single stitch.

Latvian Bind-Off

This is an intermediate sewn bind-off that is the stretchiest of all the sewn bind-offs.

Not only is it very stretchy, it also springs back into place nicely.

Invisible Ribbed Bind-Off for 1×1 Rib

This is an invisible sewn bind-off that I would consider “required reading” for advanced knitters.

This bind-off is stretchier than the Tubular Bind-Off, so if you’re binding off the cuff of a sock and you have a big foot that you need your bind-off to stretch over, this is the bind-off that I would recommend.

 

Tubular Bind-Off for 1×1 Rib

This is a stretchy, advanced bind-off that is totally invisible: the stitches in the ribbing continue over the top edge and onto the other side.

As an added bonus, this bind-off matches the Tubular Cast-On.

I would consider either this or the Invisible Ribbed Bind-Off “required reading” for advanced knitters.

Kitchener Double-Rib Bind-Off

If you want a 2×2 ribbed bind-off that’s stretchy and truly invisible, look no farther than the Kitchener Double-Rib Bind-Off.

The bind-off stitches blend into the 2×2 ribbing perfectly, making it look like the edge is hemmed.

Cable Bind-Off for 1×1 Rib

This is an intermediate, medium speed bind-off that is not very stretchy, but which is lovely for other reasons.

The special thing about this bind-off is that it is half-invisible, half-decorative. The columns of knit and purl stitches in the ribbing blend into the right side of the bind-off row in an attractive way that is sort of a cross between an invisible bind-off and a decorative bind-off.

Cable Bind-Off for 2×2 Rib

This is a quasi-invisible ribbed bind-off with a firm edge that is not very stretchy.

While not truly invisible, the bind-off edge blends in with the ribbing nicely.

Based on the Cable Bind-Off for 1×1 Rib, this 2×2 rib adaptation calls for you to do each movement twice.

 

Decorative Bind-Offs

Knit 2 Together Bind-Off

This bind-off is not stretchy, so don’t use it for anything like a mitten, hat, or sock cuff that you need to stretch over a body part to wear it.

It would be great for the edge of anything that is intended to lay flat, like a dishcloth, coaster, or potholder.

I-Cord Bind-Off

This is a great intermediate bind-off that puts a round decorative column along the edge of your stitches to be bound off.

The nice thing about this bind-off is that not only is it decorative, it’s also pretty stretchy.

Edging Bind-Off

The edging bind-off is an easy way to add a lace, cable, or decorative border pattern to the edge of your work while simultaneously binding off your knitting.

Hemmed Edge Bind-Off – Purl or Picot

This is an advanced bind-off that I adapted myself by taking the Picot/Purled Hemmed Edge Cast-On and turning it into a bind-off.

 To do it, fold your work at a line of purl bumps or simple lace and bind off the edge to the inside of your knitting.

This makes a perfectly flat, hemmed edge that can be fancy or neutral, depending on which variation you choose.

Frilled Standard Bind-Off

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Frilled Standard Bind-Off
bind-offs

This is an intermediate, medium-speed bind-off that I highly recommend you learn, mostly because it’s great for binding off on lace projects — as a frilly bind-off it’s actually not very frilly at all.

It does increase the number of stitches that are in the bind-off, which makes the edge wider (thus making it flare out a little bit – hence, the “frill”).

Frilled Decrease Bind-Off

This is a medium-speed frilled bind-off that I see as advanced because it has a lot of steps to remember.

This would be a good bind-off for the top of little girl’s sock, baby booties… anything where you want a little decorative frill.

It’s also very stretchy — this is an increase bind-off, which means that the increased number of stitches along the edge gives it added width and stretch.

Ruffle Bind-Off

This is an intermediate bind-off that is will make a nice, big, girly ruffle, be it at the top of a toe-up baby sock, on the button band of a kimono-style sweater, or at the bottom or top of a girls’ skirt.

The trick to this bind-off isn’t so much in the actual binding-off itself, but in the setups rows that precede the bind-off.

Picot Point Bind-Off #1

This is an intermediate bind-off that makes little picots along the top of your knitting.

You can make the picot points however high you want. In tutorial I show you a 2-stitch picot bind-off, with added instructions for making the bind-off pointier.

Picot Point Bind-Off #2

This is an intermediate-to-advanced bind-off that’s done on the wrong side of the work.

It takes a while to do and it results in very small delicate picots.

 

Seaming Bind-Offs

Russian Grafting

This is a fast seaming bind-off that’s good for beginners.

It has a visible zigzag seam that lays flush with the knitting. It is one of the few nearly-invisible seaming bind-offs that is not sewn (the other being the Three-Needle Bind-Off ).

This bind-off would work fine for the toe of a sock or anywhere that a sturdy, flat seam is wanted.

Japanese Bind-Off

This is a medium-speed seaming bind-off that leaves a visible ridged seam. It uses three needles.

The stretchiness of this bind-off depends upon which technique you use to finish it.

There are two pieces to this bind-off: Join the two pieces of knitting into one, and binding off those stitches. If you use a stretchy bind-off to do the second part, the whole bind-off will be stretchy and if you don’t, it won’t.

ZigZag (Ancient Greek) Bind-Off

This is a very stretchy seaming bind-off that leaves a visible zigzag-shaped ridge.

It does have a distinctive zigzag look to it that is similar to Russian grafting, only this one has a pronounced ridge and the bind-off is very stretchy. It also stretches back into place nicely.

You’ll need an extra needle for this bind-off.

Three-Needle Bind-Off

This is a strong bind-off that leaves its seam on the wrong side of the work, making it nearly invisible.

It lays mostly flat, and, like the name suggests, requires a third needle.

You would most commonly use this bind-off on the shoulder seam of a sweater to secure the seam firmly (so it doesn’t sag) and to differentiate the back of the sweater from the front.

Three-Needle I-Cord Bind-Off

This is an advanced seaming bind-off that leaves an I-cord along the seam.

It makes a pronounced round ridge, is stretchy and strong, and like the name suggests, requires a third needle.

You would use this on any project where you would want a visible ridge that is shaped like an I-cord (a knitted tube) running along the seam, for example, on a child’s toy or quilt-square-type blanket.

Kitchener Stitch

This is an advanced sewn bind-off that is completely flat and invisible. It is slow but it gets faster as you get better at it.

Not only is this a fabulous way to invisibly join two pieces of knitting, this technique is used in a lot of other advanced bind-offs, making it an investment in your future knitting happiness.

I would consider it “required reading” for intermediate knitters.

Kitchener Stitch for Garter Stitch

 

Firm (Non-Stretchy) Bind-Offs

Without-Knitting Bind-Off

This is an intermediate bind-off that is like the Standard Bind-Off but that does not use any yarn. It pulls in slightly and is not stretchy.

One-Over-Two (Gathered) Bind-Off

This is an intermediate bind off that is very firm and pulls in a lot.

It’s a very narrow bind off, and you’ll want to make sure that you use a large needle — at least two to three sizes bigger than the one that you were using on your knitting — so that the bind-off doesn’t pull in too much.

This bind-off is the same as the Double-Stitch Bind-Off, which is done with two different colors to make a striped bind off.

 

Bind-Offs for Lace

Jeny’s Surprisingly-Stretchy Bind-Off (JSSBO) for 1×1 Rib

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Jeny’s Surprisingly-Stretchy Bind-Off (JSSBO) for 1×1 Rib
(JSSbind-offs

This is an intermediate bind-off for ribbing that is super stretchy. It is not blazingly fast, but it’s faster than most of the other stretchy bind-offs out there.

This bind-off, also called JSSBO, is a heavy-duty bind-off that stretches out — yes — surprisingly far, and then, accordion-like, springs back into shape. It does this feat better than many other stretchy bind-offs, which either flare when un-stretched or stay stretched out once stretched (and nobody wants that).

Frilled Standard Bind-Off

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Frilled Standard Bind-Off
bind-offs

This is an intermediate, medium-speed bind-off that I highly recommend you learn, mostly because it’s great for binding off on lace projects — as a frilly bind-off it’s actually not very frilly at all.

It does increase the number of stitches that are in the bind-off, which makes the edge wider (thus making it flare out a little bit – hence, the “frill”).

Picot Chain Bind-Off

Picot Chain Bind-Off on Lace (fFeather and Fan)
The Picot Chain Bind-Off is an intermediate, medium-speed increase bind-off. This means that you add stitches (yarnovers, in this case) in order to make a wider edge.

This bind-off is good on any knitting that flares out, when you need to make sure that the bind-off also flares out.

The Picot Chain bind-off is similar to the Yarnover Bind-Off in that it uses yarnovers every other stitch in order to increase the width of the bind-off. Unlike the Yarnover bind off, however, there’s no purling involved.

I don’t particularly like the look of the edge, but I still think this bind-off is worthwhile learning. It’s important to know how to add yarnovers wherever you want into your bind off to make it wider -— useful for when you’re winging it.

 

Bind-Offs for Garter Stitch

Icelandic Bind-Off

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Icelandic Bind-Off
bind-offs

This is a fantastic stretchy bind-off that even many advanced knitters have not heard of.

It’s one of the three stretchiest standard bind-offs (the other two being the Elastic Bind-Off and EZ Sewn Bind-Off).

It’s also amazing for Garter stitch.

EZ Sewn Bind-Off

This is a very stretchy sewn bind-off that’s good for beginners. This was famously Elizabeth Zimmerman’s favorite stretchy bind-off (which is what the “EZ” stands for)

It’s great on Garter stitch.

This bind-off is very stretchy but, importantly, bounces easily back into shape. Nobody likes a stretched-out bind-off.

Latvian Bind-Off

This is an intermediate sewn bind-off that is the stretchiest of all the sewn bind-offs.

Not only is it very stretchy, it also springs back into place nicely.

 

Bind-Offs for Seed Stitch

Cable Bind-Off for Seed Stitch

This is a decorative bind-off that is based on the Cable Bind-Off for 1×1 Rib.

The technique makes the seed-stitch texture seem to continue into the bind-off row.

This is not a stretchy bind-off. Use it on the edge of a potholder or a dishcloth — anything where you don’t need the edge to stretch.

 

Two-Color Bind-Offs

Simple Two-Color Bind-Off

This bind-off looks good over vertical stripes, and, while the bind-off itself is very easy, it involves two-color knitting, which is why I think this bind-off merits an “intermediate” rating.

It based on the Standard Bind-Off, which means it won’t be stretchy enough to top off two-color brioche or anything that needs to stretch much, like Fair-Isle ribbing.

The trick to this bind-off is that you knit the stitches with their opposite color while you do the Standard Bind-Off.

Double-Stitch Bind-Off

If you have a solid color fabric and you want to finish it with a two-colored bind-off, this is the right choice.

It’s basically the One-Over-Two Bind-Off prepared on the wrong side row and done with alternating colors.

 

Sloped Bind-Offs

Sloped Bind-Off

This bind-off has its own section because it’s the only one of its kind.

As the name suggests, this bind-off makes a sloped edge, which you would usually on the shoulder of a sweater.

Use the sloped bind-off any time your pattern calls for you to bind off a few stitches every right-side row to make a slanted edge.

 

Buttonholes

Tulips Buttonhole

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Tulips Buttonhole
bind-offs

This buttonhole, invented by TechKnitter, can be done over 2 or more stitches.

It creates a strong buttonhole with matching cast-on and bind-off edges that has uniquely strong sides.

You will need a crochet hook and a small double-pointed needle for this bind-off.

 

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