Casting off / Binding Off
(How to get stitches off the needles)
You learned how to cast on, knit and purl stitches? Once you’re done with your project, then what? Well, you’ve gotta get stitches off the needle.
Each stitch on your needle is a “live” stitch. Meaning if you drop one of those stitches off the needle it will unravel AAALLLL the way down to the bottom. I know that sounded really scary, but don’t worry. I’m going to teach you how to bind off each stitch so they don’t unravel.
There are literally dozens of ways to bind off your work when knitting. There are super stretchy ones, tubular ones, decorative methods. You name it. I’m going to cover a very basic, perfect for beginners, bind off method. It will get the job done for anything edge that doesn’t need to be super stretchy.
Once your work is the length you want or you’ve finished the pattern, move the needle with the stitches to your left hand.
Work one stitch in pattern. Purl on a purl stitch or knit a knit stitch.
Work another stitch in pattern for a total of two stitches on your right needle.
Insert left needle into the first stitch on the right needle. Basically you are picking up the first stitch worked with your left needle.
Using the left needle, pull the first stitch over the second stitch.
Continue working steps 2-4 until only one stitch remains on the right needle.
When you have one stitch remaining, cut the yarn tail. Leave at least 3 inches attached to your piece.
Pull the yarn tail through the single remaining stitch and pull tight to secure.
Congrats!! Lets go over all the things you’ve learned so far.
Casting Off/Binding Off
You’ve also probably learned a lot about needles and yarn. What did you make this time? Maybe just a little square. Or something more substantial? If you’re new to this, try making a little washcloth. Grab some cotton yarn (from any craft store) and knit a square. If you’ve been at this for a little longer try a hat or ear warmer! Keep practicing!