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Picking up and Knitting Stitches

December 24, 2013

Picking up stitches sounds intimidating but let’s work through it! The following example is a sock but the principles are the same when picking up stitches from stockinette no matter the project.

pickup2

::: how to pick up stitches :::

To pick up stitches you need the right side of your work facing you (the knit side).

Step 1:  Insert your needle into the stitch or between rows (from RS to WS)
Step 2:  Loop the yarn around your needle (at the back of work)
Step 3:  Pull the loop through to the RS (using the needle tip, as though you were knitting a stitch)

Now you will have a stitch on your right hand needle. You have picked up a stitch!

30 Comments leave one →
  1. Jane permalink
    November 2, 2019 6:12 am

    These instructions say that you should be working on the right side when you pick up stitches, yet in the Harvest pattern we are knitting on the wrong side when we pick up stitches. Can you explain why, or am I misunderstanding something? Also, the edge stitches in you tutorial look like they were slipped.

    • November 5, 2019 12:37 pm

      Hi Jane – for the harvest cardigan at the collar the RS should be facing you. These sock sts were indeed slipped.

  2. Margaret permalink
    October 22, 2019 8:09 pm

    I understand concept of picking up sts however – my pattern (harvest sweater) pick up and knit 93 sts along collar edge pick up at rate of 3 sts in every 4 rows – this I don’t understand
    Please help

    • October 23, 2019 9:46 am

      Hi Margaret – It means you are going to pick up 1 stitch in each row for 3 sts, then skip a row, then pick up 3 sts (one in each row) then skip a stitch etc. Does that help?

  3. Barbara permalink
    March 11, 2019 8:12 am

    I have knitted the collar three times. I knit row 1 and row 2 and which makes 1 of my 60 times, which equals 121 rows including my cast on (crochet). The problem is, I can see every knitted side stitch perfectly, but there are not enough to pick up 90

    • March 12, 2019 7:05 pm

      Hi Barbara – which pattern are you knitting? Maybe drop us an email (tincaknits@gmail.com) with which pattern and what size you are knitting and we can better help with pattern support!

  4. Anne Marie permalink
    February 18, 2019 11:27 am

    Hi there! Making the Harvest sweater and cannot manage to get 93 stitches when I pick up and knit (making the S/M size)…I picked up 3 stitches every 3 rows (incorrect) but only was left with 75 stitches. If I pick up 3 every 4 rows…it won’t work. Help!

    • February 18, 2019 1:39 pm

      Hi Anne – it sounds like maybe you don’t have enough rows? If you have 125 rows you should be able to pick up 93 sts.

      • Anne Marie permalink
        February 18, 2019 2:04 pm

        I have 125 rows! Likely a me problem. Thanks.

  5. Darlene permalink
    September 5, 2018 12:04 am

    When I pick up stitches under the arm ,holes are left. How can I correct this?

    • September 5, 2018 10:22 am

      Hi Darlene – one suggestion is to pick up 2 extra sts on either side of the underarm, then decrease these 2 sts on the first round of the sleeve. Another is to leave a long tail when starting your pick up and sewing up those holes once your sweater is done.

    • Lindsay permalink
      February 18, 2019 11:12 am

      Not sure if you found a solution that satisfies you but this YouTube video helped me out a ton!

  6. Mary permalink
    February 21, 2018 11:47 am

    Thank you for the free patterns! I have knitted the flax pullover and love the pattern. Now I am doing the Harvest cardigan.
    I am knitting the 1 to 2 yrs size and I am having a problem right after picking up stitches around the collar. The pattern reads-
    ‘Setup row (WS): knit to marker, p3, PM, p14 (17, 18 19,
    17, 18, 18, 23, 21, 23, 21, 21, 22, 20, 23, 23, 25) sts, PM,
    p24 (28, 30, 32, 32, 37, 37, 42, 43, 47, 47, 48, 53, 56, 61,
    64, 67) sts, PM, p14 (17, 18, 19, 17, 18, 18, 23, 21, 23, 21,
    21, 22, 20, 23, 23, 25) sts, PM, p3 (this brings you to the
    last marker), knit to end’.

    My stitch count is as follows -8 sts for the garter edge=8+3+18+30+18+3+8=88 but the pattern says I should have 92.
    what am I doing wrong?? Any help appreciated.
    Thanks!

    • Mary permalink
      February 21, 2018 11:50 am

      Just realized my garter edge should be 10!

    • February 28, 2018 9:01 am

      Hi Mary – I think I answered this question on Ravelry? You should have 10 edge sts for your size.

    • Delores Barthold permalink
      March 18, 2018 2:26 pm

      Hey i am doing the size 2 years to 4 and i am having the same issue i am not sure how many rows am to knit for the collar i pick and knit for the set up row and i am short stitches i took it out 3 time now and i started over

      • March 21, 2018 11:29 am

        Hi Mary – sorry, which pattern are you working on? (the comment is on the ‘Picking up and knitting stitches so I’m not 100% sure)

  7. Ginamorrison316@yahoo.com permalink
    March 11, 2017 8:20 am

    Making this harvest cardigan now and wondering when picking up stitches along the collar do you pick up both strands of the stitch or one strand? Thank you

    • March 11, 2017 9:46 am

      Hi Gina – I usually go in both strands, I find it makes for a cleaner pick up.

      • Ginamorrison316@yahoo.com permalink
        March 11, 2017 11:08 am

        I’ll do the same then thank you

  8. barbara permalink
    November 19, 2016 6:34 pm

    how do you pick up and knit on a circular needle

  9. March 21, 2016 2:58 pm

    I’m not sure I understand the pick up xx stitches every xx rows. This needs a bit of clarification. I had picked up all 70 stitches and then took them out realizing it wasn’t right.

    • March 22, 2016 9:57 am

      To pick up x sts for x rows you will pick up a few sts in each row then skip a row. If, for example, you are picking up 3 sts for 4 rows, you would pick up a stitch in each row for 3 rows, then skip one row, then pick up 3 sts in each row for 3 rows, then skip 1 row, etc.

  10. Sarah permalink
    May 22, 2014 4:39 pm

    Thanks for your tutorials – I’m about to knit my first cardigan, Harvest Knit. Could you please explain to me how to pick up xx stitches every xx rows? Does it mean I’m not picking up every available stitch? Won’t this leave holes in the cardigan?

    • March 21, 2016 3:10 pm

      Did you ever get it figured out?

      • Puspa permalink
        August 11, 2019 12:15 pm

        Hi,
        I am knitting the Gramps cardigan size 2-4.

        After picking up sts for button band & shawl collar, I will be doing a p1(k1,p1) on the wrong side up to 2nd marker. Kfb for the back neck sts.

        My question is, do I continue ribbing down to the left front? Then rib up to 2nd stitch past the 4th marker W&T?

        Thank you for the tutorial. I just want to be clear as I am knitting for my twin grand kids.

      • August 19, 2019 9:48 am

        Hi – I’m not sure I understand the quetsion? Once you have picked up all of your sts and worked the set up row that establishes the ribbing you are going to start the short rows. You will work to a few sts past the 4th marker (that’s into the left front of the sweater) then wrap and turn, leaving the rest of the left front sts unworked. Does that help?

    • January 27, 2017 1:01 pm

      hey Sarah. I had a hole issue. Maybe I did something wrong as I knit contin etnal but I had the feeling that the fourth (skipped) stitsch left a rather large hole. In the end it wasn’t a disaster, but it’s not as neat as I would like…

  11. Ana Valbuena permalink
    January 27, 2014 1:31 pm

    Qué fácil lo haces! Muchas gracias

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