Messy Edges

While my stitches look so much better after I fixed some tension, I’m noticing that my left and right edges are rather messy; usually every row ends with a big loop and I can kind of fix this by tugging down on the entire work a bit, but not always.

Any advice on this?

After you do the first stitch on a row, pull the yarn a little, that will take up slack on the last stitch of the row before. Then make the next 2 sts just a little tighter than usual.

Oh, that’s an idea. ^^ Should I do this for every row or will it fix it up once the first time?

Probably every row. It doesn’t have to be a hard pull or a really tight tension and after a few rows you get into the rhythm of it.

Suzeeq is right. I tug on the yarn all the time and it instantly fixed the loose edges. I had horrible edges just the ones you described and now it’s not a problem.


The gals are right … but I was taught to knit first stitch normally, insert needle into second stitch but don’t work it until you give the yarn a gentle tug/tension and then continue on. I guess I give my second stitch a teenie tug too … perhaps tug is not the correct word because if you tug too hard you’ll have a gap but I think you know what I mean …

That’s pretty much the same thing Sheri; the thing is to only do the first st, then pull the slack out of the yarn before you actually do the 2nd st.

I haven’t been coming here too long but I’ve always been impressed with your knowledge. I see you are from Wyoming - I’m in Loveland, CO.

I’ve been knitting a while…

I’m in Casper; I’ll wave next time I get down toward Denver…

One way to resolve the messy edge problem is to slip the first stitch of every row. You’ll end up with a nice chain along the edge. I do that for all exposed edges, such as scarf edges.
For edges that are going to be seamed, its a different story. I usually knit every stich, and when it is time to sew the edges together, I find it easier to distinguish the rows if I knit them all. Besides, since the edge is going to be hidden, whe cares if it was a bit messy…


When you say slip, any kind of slip? Knitwise, purlwise? Or does that depend on the pattern?

And if I slip the stitch, won’t that mess up the pattern?

If I am knitting in stockinette, on RS, I’ll slip the first st knitwise,
on the WS, slip purlwise. I’ll keep the rest of the stitches according to the pattern.
If I am working on a scarf with a few edge st forming a moss or seed st edge, I just slip the first st. Just remember to keep it consistant on each edge.