How to Knit Dropped Stitches

Sign in
Duration: 8:37

Membership Options


Sign up for premium membership and get access to our best knitting videos and projects. Get inspired and learn new knitting techniques and tips from friendly experts. Anytime. Anywhere.
Monthly $6.00
Annually $59.00


Upgrade to GOLD membership and get unlimited access to our entire library of premium knitting videos and receive discounts on video downloads and classes in the shop. In addition, you’ll receive three video downloads, five full-length classes, 10 knitting patterns, access to GOLD member LIVE events, and more!
Annually $139.00

Dropping stitches often happens by accident; however, they can also be used to create a beautiful and interesting fabric for your projects. In this video, Jill Wright demonstrates how to work a simple dropped stitch pattern.

To anchor the stitches, Jill casts on less stitches than what is needed for the project. This way, stitches can be added on the first row that will anchor them to the cast on. Jill explains that if the dropped stitches aren’t properly anchored, the cast on may unravel as well. For the swatch in the video, Jill casts on 12 stitches using the cable cast on. The works the first row by knitting three stitches, then picking up a strand of the cast on and purling into the back loop of that strand to add a stitch. These steps are repeated, ending with knitting three stitches.

The fabric is then created working two rows. The Wrong Side is worked by purling three stitches, then knitting one stitch. This is repeated to the last three stitches, ending with a purl three. On the Right Side, Jill knits three stitches, then purls one stitch. This is repeated to the last three stitches, ending with a knit three. These two rows are repeated, creating a 3×1 (knit 3 stitches, purl 1 stitch) ribbing fabric.

Once the fabric is created, Jill starts binding off on a Right-Side row, where the stitches will be dropped. She is dropping the column of purl stitches. She works a conventional bind off until she comes to the purl stitch. She drops the purl stitch, pulling the fabric horizontally to drop the stitch all the way down to the cast on. She binds off into the bar created by the dropped stitch by knitting one stitch into the bar and binding off one stitch. She then knits into the bar again through the back loop to create a stitch, and then binds off a stitch. The bind off is continued, binding off the knit stitches, dropping the purl stitches, and working two stitches into the bar to bind off. The result is a beautiful fabric with sturdy cast on and bind off edges.