If you’ve been wanting to learn how to make a slip knot for crochet or knitting, you can learn today. In this Knitting 101 tutorial, we’ll show you how in just a few easy steps.
Before we get to the knitting tutorial, let’s talk about the slip knot, what it is, and what it does.
What's a Slip Knot?
When you hear the word ‘knot,’ a slip knot probably isn’t the first thing you think of.
In the family of common knots, it’s considered a stopper knot or a running knot. Knitters, crocheters, and sailors all use it, to name a few.
It's purpose is to anchor something in place. Unlike other knots, though, if you pull one end, it will easily come undone. So, in this regard, it is not your traditional knot.
Using a Slip Knot in Knitting
This is the first step on your journey to learn to knit.
For some cast on methods, like the long tail cast on, the slip knot is the first stitch you place on your knitting needle. It sets up your cast on row and anchors the following stitches. It’s also what regulates the size of your stitches on your knitting needle.
As you learn how to knit, you will find that this knitting technique is one you will use often. Like if you're using the Two Strand Method for your long tail cast on. Learn more below about this method and how much yarn you'll need for a long tail cast on.
Do I Need a Slip Knot?
This is a question I get asked a lot.
Here’s my response: Yes and no.
Let me explain.
Nevertheless, you can still long tail cast on without a slip knot. It’s true, but you have to remember that its purpose is to lock the yarn to the needle.
More importantly, though, it is what controls the tension of your first stitch. Remember, this stitch will also be an edge stitch and is highly visible. If you skip this step, your first row may look fine but, when you work back to that first stitch, the loop will be loose.
Also, working with a slip knot helps create a squared cast on edge. This will keep your knitting edge look neat and uniform. So I don’t recommend skipping the slip knot.
This image below gives you an idea of this neat, square edge that a slip knot can provide. This is shown on a security blanket in 100% cotton yarn.
Do You Knit into the Slip Knot?
Unless your cast on method says otherwise, yes, you knit into this stitch.
Two things to remember when using a slip knot in a long tail cast on:
- It's your first stitch and;
- your cast on row is your first row of knitting.
Alright. We’ve established what it is and how it effects your knitting. Now, let’s get to the photo tutorial.
How Do You Make a Slip Knot for Knitting?
This beginning knitter tutorial will teach you how to tie a slip knot for knitting.
Grab your knitting yarn and needles. Let’s begin.
First, unravel some yarn. Hold both the tail and the working yarn in your left hand. Let it drape over your left index finger. Your other hand should be holding the tail and the other strand together.
Second, while holding the loop on your left index finger, twist the two strands. Your yarn should be crossed as below shown in the image.
Third, with your left hand, reach into the loop. Keep the yarn tight to prevent it from slipping off.
Fourth, pinch the yarn on top of your right index finger and pull away from your right hand. This will create the beginning of the knot.
Finally, begin to pull the slip knot but do not cinch yet. Transfer the slip knot onto your knitting needle. Keep the slip knot lightly cinched on your needle. It should be able to slide easily.
That’s it! Pretty easy, right?
Now, you’re ready to cast on stitches. This knitting tutorial will teach you how to long tail cast on.
Did you find this tutorial on how to make a slip knot helpful? Tell us about it. We'd love to hear from you.