How to Knit Duplicate Stitches | Add a Colourwork Design to Your Knitting

About: Multi-crafter, jewellery maker, card designer and frequent procrastinator.

Intro: How to Knit Duplicate Stitches | Add a Colourwork Design to Your Knitting

This easy stitching method allows you to add any colourwork design onto a knitted item, without having to do any complicated or fiddly Fair Isle or Intarsia techniques.

You simply stitch over the top of existing stitches with a different-coloured yarn. Simple!

You can add a stitched design onto the top of your knitting (usually stockinette) after you have finished your project, or you could even add the design onto a knitted item you have bought pre-made from a shop.

The photo above shows 2 slightly different methods you can use to create your duplicate stitch design; the heart design at the top was formed using 'n' shaped stitches, whilst the heart at the bottom was formed using 'v' shaped stitches. You can choose whichever you prefer (or both).

Step 1: What You Will Need

All you need is:

- Your knitting: 'stockinette' knitted fabric like shown is best to use, as the technique can end up looking messy on 'garter' stitch.

- A design; I just made a little heart outline pattern on a grid (on a Post-It!). Feel free to use the same one, or you can look up a Fair Isle or Intarsia chart pattern to use instead.

- Yarn; This yarn is going to be used to apply the stitching, and must be at least the same weight/thickness as the yarn used in the knitted item you are using. So if your knitting is in double knit/worsted weight, then you can use the same weight or bulky yarn to add the duplicate stitch.

- A yarn needle or tapestry needle; you need a needle with an eye big enough for the yarn to go through

- Scissors

- Fabric marker; Optional but useful to have. I used a fabric pen that disappears from the fabric after a few hours, and it was useful for marking out the stitch pattern onto the knitting.

Step 2: Mark Out the Pattern

If you have a non-permanent fabric pen, then just mark out where you are going to add the design onto your knitting.

If you don't have a fabric pen, it might be a good idea to mark the centre of your knitting with a safety pin instead, for easy reference.

Step 3: Diagram Instructions

It's perhaps easier to see what is going on in a diagram, so the diagram instructions are as follows:

- Thread the yarn onto a needle.

- Bring the needle from the back of the knitting to the front, bringing the yarn through either the top of an 'n', or the bottom of a 'v' stitch.The pink dot on diagram 2 represents the bottom of a 'v' stitch.

For this example, we are therefore duplicating a 'v' shape stitch.

- Leave at least 6" of yarn behind the knitting, because you'll need to weave this in later.

- Then take the needle horizontally under & through the 'v' stitch above the 'v' you want to duplicate. This stitch is shown in pink on diagram 3.

- Then take your needle to the back of the knitting again by going back through the pink dot (diagram 4) where you started.

- You should now have duplicated a stitch (shown in red in diagram 5).

Step 4: Duplicate 'v' Stitches

This is the 'real-life' version of the method shown in the previous diagrams. We are duplicating the 'v' shape stockinette stitches by doing the following:

- Thread the yarn onto a needle.
- Bring the needle from the back of the knitting to the front, bringing the yarn through the bottom of a 'v' stitch. (A 'v' is formed where 2 halves of a stitch meet.)

- Leave at least 6" of yarn behind the knitting, because you'll need to weave this in later.

- Take the needle horizontally under/through the 'v' stitch above the 'v' you want to duplicate.

- Take your needle to the back of the knitting again by going through the point where you started the stitch.

- You should now have duplicated a stitch.

- Then repeat these steps to duplicate the next stitch in your chosen design.

- Keep going until you complete your design. You should be following a chart of some sort which should make it easy enough to follow.

Step 5: Duplicate 'n' Stitches

We are duplicating the 'n' (or upside-down 'v') shaped stockinette stitches in this example, by doing the following steps:

- Thread the yarn onto a needle.

- Bring the needle from the back of the knitting to the front, bringing the yarn through the top of an 'n' stitch. (An 'n' is formed where 2 halves of a stitch meet and form a chevron).

- Leave at least 6" of yarn behind the knitting, because you'll need to weave this in later.

- Take the needle horizontally under/through the 'n' stitch below the 'n' you want to duplicate.

- Take your needle to the back of the knitting again by going through the point where you started the stitch.

- You should now have duplicated a stitch.

- Then repeat these steps to duplicate the next stitch in your chosen design.

- Keep going until you complete your design. You should be following a chart of some sort which should make it easy enough to follow.

Step 6: Weaving in the Yarn Tails

Lastly, weave in the 2 tails of yarn you will now have sticking out of the back of the knitting.

Step 7: Finished!

In this photo you can see the 2 heart designs side-by-side for comparison.

The heart at the top was made by duplicating the 'n' or upside-down 'v' stitches, whilst the heart at the bottom was made by duplicating the 'v' stitches.

They each produce a slightly different look so it's up to you which method you choose to form your design.

I hope this tutorial has been helpful, and thanks for reading!

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Fiber Arts Contest 2017

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