Knitting colourwork hats are a great way to get into the groove of stranded knitting! When working from the bottom up, you can begin on 16” or 20” circular needles, making it easy to settle into your tension and see progress.
Our second Colourwork Club pattern, Bellfield, features a beautiful snowflake pattern on the crown, with decreases neatly incorporated. Here’s our step-by-step photo tutorial on working decreases in stranded colourwork.
K2tog - right leaning decrease
Here the stitch before the decrease is worked in the pattern colour, and the k2tog is worked with the background colour (grey).
Insert the right needle tip into the fronts of 2 stitches on the left needle from left to right, and knit them together using the background colour.
ssk - left leaning decrease
There are 2 stitches worked in the pattern colour before the decrease, so we’ll need to draw the yarn across the back before working the ssk.
Slip 2 sts individually knit wise, insert the left needle tip into the fronts of these 2 stitches, and knit them together through the back loop. Make sure to spread out the stitches slightly on the right needle before finishing the decrease, so the float isn’t too tight.
Centered double decrease (CDD)
This double decrease (also known as s2kp) is nicely centered, with the middle stitch ending up on top.
Slip the first 2 stitches as if to k2tog.
Knit the third stitch in the colour indicated.
Pass the 2 slipped stitches over the knit stitch. 3 stitches have been decreased to 1.
After a few decrease rounds, you'll need to switch to double pointed needles or magic loop to complete the decreases - more on working colourwork over small circumferences next time!
By following our step-by-step mattress stitch knitting tutorial, you'll learn how to make your seams look beautiful and how best to prepare your knitting so that when you seam it with mattress stitch, it goes smoothly on the first try.
The long tail cast on is a great multi-purpose knitting cast on and the perfect place for beginner knitters to start. Learn how to work the long tail cast on and how to estimate the length of yarn needed with our clear step by step tutorial and video.
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