Hello again, and welcome to our third installment of Knit 101, where we’ll learn how to take our scarf off the needles. First of all, I want to say that I have really loved the Instagram photos and emails you’ve been sending me showing your scarves in progress, like this one here. I am so impressed with your work! Please, keep them coming! Also, I want to make sure you know I am available if you have any snags or hangups…you can email me using the contact form on my website and I will be more than happy to help you out.
Now, on with the tutorial! First, you need to decide how long you want your scarf to be. If you have a ball of yarn with a lot of yardage and would like to knit a long, traditional scarf, go right ahead! If you would like to follow along with this project and make a shorter, “neck warmer” type scarf with a button closure, you will want to stop knitting when your scarf measures 20 inches long from the cast-on edge. Whichever length you decide, you will need to take your work off the needles, and that is called “binding off”. I’m going to show you the most basic bind-off technique. When you become a more advanced knitter, you will do this with your needles, but I find that in the beginning it’s easier to do it with your hands. So, when you get to your final row of stitches (congratulations!), you’re going to knit two stitches as if you’re starting a whole new row, but then stop. You will have two stitches on your right needle, and the other 18 remaining on your left needle.
Pick up the first stitch you knit, and pull it up and over the second stitch you knit, and off the needle.
You will now have one stitch bound off, and one stitch remaining on your right needle. Repeat this process all the way to the end of the row, knitting one stitch and passing the older stitch over it and off the needle…
…until just one stitch remains! Cut the yarn attached to the ball so you have about a 5 -inch “tail” hanging from that last stitch. Here is a video I really like for beginners showing a basic bind-off in action.
Remove your needle carefully from that stitch so it leaves a loop. Thread the tail through the loop and pull to tighten.
Now you have a finished, bound-off edge that won’t unravel! You will also have two unsightly tails of yarn: one at the beginning of your cast-on edge, and the one you just created. You just need to weave these into your scarf so they don’t show. There are lots of ways to weave in ends…you can use a tapestry needle with a big eye, or a crochet hook. But with extra bulky yarn like this, it’s also easy to just weave them in with your fingers.
Next week, we will attach a button to our scarf and it will be finished! Happy knitting!
To see last weeks lesson, click here.
Photos and Knit 101 by Rebekka Seale for Bleubird.