Just like decreasing stitches this sounds like a weird thing to want to do. Why would you want to increase the number of stitches on your needles, you’ve just spent all this time getting them on there and counting them to make sure you’ve done the right amount?
You will sometimes see in patterns that you need to increase the number of stitches on your needle. The pattern is asking you to make more stitches in your knitting because you are starting to shape the item you are making. This kind of technique is often used in shawls, shaping hats, and also in our India Baby Blanket where you actually increase in every row and you end up knitting a triangle shape. We use this skill in a number of our kits and it’s a good one to get to know. There are various ways you might be asked to increase, and for most of our kits, we use the Make One Method. Luckily for you, it’s fairly easy to do!
Watch our video and learn how to increase stitches
To increase stitches you need to make a new one out of an existing one. Sounds a bit like magic and there are actually a few ways to do it – we use the knit front and back (kfb) technique in our India baby blanket (which is different to the video so you're actually learning two methods in one blog - bonus!) so we’ll focus on this one here.
Remember to follow the instructions in your pattern as to where in a row you are increasing as there might be one increase in a row or multiple increases. You want to get them in the right place as doing them in the wrong place could have interesting consequences for the shape of your knitting!
- Keep trying, it can seem a bit weird at first to knit a stitch twice but once you understand what you are trying to do it should make sense. I recommend practicing this pattern a few times to get to grips with it…
- co 1 – CAST ON 1 STITCH
- kfb (2) – KNIT INTO THE FRONT AND BACK OF THIS STITCH – DO YOU HAVE 2 ON YOUR NEEDLE NOW??
- kfb, k1 (3) –Knit into the front and back of your stitch then knit another one – you should have 3 now…
- kfb, k2 (4) – you get the idea
- kfb, k3 (5) – yep, keep practicing!
- kfb, k4 (6) – you should have it by now…
- Follow the pattern but don’t freak out if you mess up – chances are only you will notice!
- At the end of a row in a pattern you will often see the number of stitches you should have left on your needle after you’ve done an increase row (you usually find it at the end of the instruction in brackets). We recommend checking that your stitch count matches so you know you’ve done it correctly!
- Get making all manner of shaped knitted garments!!
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