Help: place sts on waste yarn

okay, this is probably a silly question, but how do you place sts on waste yarn? i understand that you do this to hold those stitches while you work elsewhere – but can anyone explain this? and, instead of waste yarn, can i use stitch holders?

i’m working on my first sweater (jared’s cobblestone pullover) and have been studying the pattern before i begin.

thanks in advance for any help! :hug:

In a mitten I did I used waste yarn for the thumb. I used the waste yarn and knit it in just like you would a new color or a new skein. Since the yarn was just holding the place I slipped those 7 stitches back on the RH needle and knit them with the regular yarn.

Not sure how this applies to your sweater, but I hope this helps!


I use stitch holders or another circular needle because getting them on to the yarn and off again seems too fiddly. I do it occasionally (like when I need the needles they’re on) and use a small crochet hook to pull the yarn through the stitches.

thanks! i think i’ll use stitch holders, as well. just wanted to get another opinion. :slight_smile:

In some cases when you use waste yarn (like in a thumb gusset) and then knit onto the waste yarn, you get live stitches top and bottom when you remove the waste yarn. So then you wouldn’t want to use a stitch holder, am I right?

in the pattern, it says to slip the sts to waste yarn – so i don’t believe that i would be knitting onto the waste yarn.

you could always use a large-eye blunt needle, and just go along, transferring the stitches over to the needle/waste yarn

I do it the way Orangeus suggests. Just thread the waste yarn (a smooth cotton yarn is perfect, but most anything will do) through a tapestry needle. Then holding your needle with the stitches on it in your left hand begin running the needle through the stitches. You can do quite a few at once. Then pull the yarn through and do some more until you have done all you need to do. You can then tie the ends of the waste yarn together so the stitches can’t fall off, or just leave a generous end on each end and they will stay put.

I like using the waste yarn over the stitch holders myself. The stitch holders are unyielding and get in the way and the yarn holder doesn’t. They also allow you to see how your project is shaping up better.

When it’s time to put them back on a needle it helps to use a small sized needle and just feed it through much like you did with the tapestry needle. Then knit off in the size needle you need to use.

Whatever you prefer. Just thought I’d add my $00.02.

I like to put my waste stitches on a Boye circular cord, with discs on each end to hold it on. When I’m ready to use it again, I just add needle points, and I’m ready to go.