The Amazing Adventures of Tom and Bel

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

PS(K)A: Let's Twist Again

Something that's come up lately in a class I'm teaching is the difference between twisted and untwisted stockinette. One of my students knits Continental style (I've seen this happen with several folks who knit this way, including myself when I first learned) and has been having a bit of trouble with this.
So, as a PSA for folks who might not be aware of what's happening here, I present the Three Faces of Stockinette:

Plain old stockinette. This is what you're striving for most of the time.

Twisted stockinette st. This means you are knitting into the back of every stitch.
It is a lovely effect, and looks especially nice in ribbing or fancy Bavarian patterns.

Easy to tell the difference, you say? Well how about this one, then:

Half twisted stockinette. Only one row is being knit into the back. This is harder to distinguish from regular stockinette. If you look closely, you can see that this swatch has more texture than the plain one.

I actually like the effect of half-twisted stockinette a lot. The added texture makes a big difference to a plain garment. Rox (The Fearless Knitter) has made a gorgeous Cable Eight tank with half twisted stitches that I think looks better than the original. I'd never have made that sweater from seeing the pattern in the magazine, but her beautiful green one has put lust in my heart made me take a second look at a design I would have otherwise have passed over.

As I mentioned, I've noticed this happening most with Continental knitters and folks who learned to knit from a book rather than a person (like myself). Check out Knitting Help for some excellent video tutorials.


  • I'm a twisty gal. I can knit untwisted when I need to, like in a lace or cable pattern, where it matters. But I've become so accustomed to that little bit of texture pop that I don't like regular stockinette when I'm knitting for myself.

    Very cool. Sounds like a neat class.

    By Blogger Gewel, at 7:21 AM  

  • Ah, G, we know *exactly* how twisted you are (what with the spinning, and the knitting...)

    By Blogger Cher, at 12:47 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home