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I don’t know about the rest of you, but weaving in ends isn’t something that I’m especially fond of. Sure, I don’t absolutely loathe it, but it certainly takes away from time that could otherwise be spent knitting. It only makes sense, then, to minimize the number of ends that I create while knitting, and stripes can be particularly troublesome in that department. Of course, the key word in the previous sentence is minimize, since striped fabrics will always create more ends than solid ones. Carrying my threads, however, helps me preserve my sanity, and keeps me zooming along on my stripes (a win-win!). So, without further ado, here’s how I do it:

(c) Hayley Andrews

(c) Hayley Andrews

As you can see in the first photo, I’m working two-row stripes with two separate balls of yarn. I’ve just finished working with the white and am ready to return to the pink.

(c) Hayley Andrews

(c) Hayley Andrews

In the second photo, the new color (pink) crosses in front of and over the old color (white). This is all that is needed to change color when working two-row stripes. However, what if I were knitting wider stripes and wanted to carry my unused color up the side?

(c) Hayley Andrews

(c) Hayley Andrews

Ta-da! In the third photo, you can see that after crossing the pink over the white, the white has been crossed over the pink again. The two colors have been twisted around each other completely and have returned to their original positions. If I were to start knitting another row of white, the pink would be locked into the edge of the white section, carrying it up until it’s needed again. Pretty slick, huh?

Here are a couple of things to remember when using this technique:

  1. Every time you start a row at the edge where your unused color is attached, you must perform this twist to carry the unused color along.
  2. Try not to pull the carried thread too tight or leave it too loose. Maintaining an even tension while switching and carrying yarns takes practice, but it’s well worth the effort!

As you can see, there’s no need to shy away from stripes–they’re really quite fun once you get into them! And, if you carry your threads, you don’t have to spend forever weaving in ends when you’re done.

What about you? Do you like to knit stripes? Have you used this technique? Please share below!