Saturday, November 27, 2010

Double, Double

No, this post isn’t about coffee*. Nor is it about gum**. Honestly, it’s about knitting. Double knitting to be precise.

Some of you may be asking, “What IS double knitting?” Double knitting can be a yarn weight, but it can also be a knitting technique that results in a double thick piece of knitting that’s also completely reversible. It can be knit flat or in the round.

I’ve known about this technique for a long time; every few years I try it just to see if I can remember how it’s done. It wasn’t until I saw the work of a specific designer on Ravelry that I became even more interested in trying it again… seriously this time. If you’re a member of Ravelry, check out tina13’s project and pattern page. She has some amazing scarves!

003This is just the beginning of a project, a toddler’s scarf, but already you can see that the two sides are reversed. I’m looking forward to seeing how this comes out. There’s another advantage to playing with this technique. I’m working with both yarns on one finger, knitting continental-style. The thing is, every second stitch is purled. I’ve never quite gotten the knack of continental purling, but that’s quickly changing. Even after four rows, it’s already becoming much more comfortable.

As far as learning this technique, I’ve been hunting for books on the subject; I found one at KnitPicks (it’s made it to my wish list), Double Knitting by M’Lou Baber. However, I don’t want to spend $30 on a book if I’m not going to enjoy the technique. I’ve taken another tack. I’ve ordered a mitten pattern through Ravelry. I figure that if I enjoy making a single pair of mittens and the scarf, I’ll get more out of the book. The first mitten is already underway, but temporarily on hold. At the moment, I’m working it on two 2.0 mm circulars, one an Addi turbo, the other a Knit Picks Harmony. Last night, while getting it all set up and on to the needles, the Harmony (laminated wood… very pretty) splintered. A splinter almost 2” long peeled off the needle, making it pretty much useless. Today, on the way to Sit & Stitch, I’ll be stopping by the yarn store to pick up a longer (36” minimum) 2.0 mm Addi turbo. (It’s being knit with the Magic Loop method.)

It sounds from the above that I’m not making any progress on other projects. I am. My cardigan is moving along, albeit slowly. I try to do a couple of rows on it every day. I must admit that I’m getting really bored with the seemingly endless ribbing. It will get done!

* Tim Horton’s Double Double is coffee with double sugar, double cream or milk.

** Double Mint gum used to use lyrics in their ads that had “double, double, double mint gum” in it.


  1. I've wanted to try double knitting ever since I saw it on Carol Duval show over a decade ago.

    I'm looking forward to seeing your progress.

  2. There are some nice double knit patterns here that might interest you:

    Also, if you go to Lucy Neatby's pattern site at Tradewinds she has several awesome doubleknit patterns and a teaching dvd.

  3. The double knitting sounds intriguing. I have thought about trying it, then decide it looks too difficult. Maybe I just need to find the right project to kick start me.

    It's good you explained what a "double double" is. Your American audience would be lost otherwise!

  4. I look forward to learning how you feel about double knitting. I have heard of it, and I understand it is not too difficult, but never done it myself either. Have fun with it, and good luck. I am sure you will do just fine and the finished item will be wonderful. :)