How to knit the Double Stockinette Stitch

A step by step tutorial on knitting the reversible double stockinette stitch for beginners

We all love the stockinette stitch. It’s an easy, beautiful, and versatile stitch for beginners. It just has two big flaws: It’s not reversible and it curls in at the edges and it’s a bit difficult to prevent it. That’s why I believe for knitting a scarf, the double stockinette stitch is the perfect alternative.

a swatch knit in the reversible double stockinette stitch

So, in this tutorial, I want to show you everything you need to know about this amazing stitch pattern. The repeat is quite easy to learn and after a couple of rows, you’ll be able to knit it without even thinking or looking.

Double Stockinette stitch creates a fully reversible and luxuriously thick fabric that is very cuddly. The resulting knitting is rather airy and squishy. Because you are essentially knitting every row twice, it is quite the yarn eater and you will have to cast on almost twice as many stitches to get to the same width compared to standard stocking stitch.

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a swatch knitted in the non-curling double stockinette stitch

In case you were wondering: I am using the Knit Picks Dreamz knitting needles for this tutorial. They are my favorite DPNS for larger sizes.

Instructions

Cast on an even number of stitches

  • Right side: *Knit 1, slip 1 purlwise with yarn in front* 
  • Wrong side: *Knit 1, sl1 purlwise wyif* 

Repeat this pattern until you reached the desired length

So, the main trick is to slip the stitches with the yarn in front. Normally, you would keep the yarn in the back as you slip. But, as the stitches you slip will turn into the knit stitches on the wrong side, you don’t want a visible wrap at the base.

Also, be aware that it may take 4-6 rows for the pattern to truly emerge. It might look a bit weird after the second row still.

a double stockinette stitch swatch

If you cast on an odd number of stitches, you will have to change the repeat on the wrong side to:

  • Right side: *K1, sl1 purlwise with wyif*, k1 
  • Wrong side: sl1 wyif, *k1, sl1 purlwise wyif*
double stockinette stitch pattern

Perhaps the easier way to remember this is: In every row, slip all stitches that appear like purls (so with a little bump at the base) and knit all stitches that look like knit stitches (so like a little “V” on your needles.

Or, if that is easier for you, slip all stitches you knit in the previous row, and knit all stitches you slipped.

Double Stockinette Stitch in the round

A swatch of double stockinette stitch knit in the round

Naturally, you can also knit this stitch pattern in the round as well. I personally feel, the main benefits (being reversible and non-curly) are getting lost here, so decide for yourself if plain stocking stitch will serve you not just as well.

Cast on an even number of stitches

  • Round 1: *K1, sl1 wyif*
  • Round 2: *sl1 wyib, P1*

The main problem is, as you can see, that there is no wrong side you could knit with. So, you gotta adjust for that by slipping with the yarn in the back every second round. But other than that, the repeat is just as straighforward.

Make sure to use a row counter so you don’t lose track. And I would place some a stitch marker at the beginning of the round so you don’t miss it either.

Slipped stitch selvage

close-up of double stockinette stitch edge to stop curling

The double stockinette stitch is also a really nice selvage stitch. In this case, reduce the repeat to 3 or 4 stitches on both sides. The repeat would look something like that

  • Row 1: Knit 1 stitch, slip 1 stitch purlwise with yarn in front, knit across until three stitches are left*central pattern*, slip 1 purlwise wyif, knit 1 stitch
  • Row 2: slip 1 purlwise wyif, knit 1 stitch, slip 1 purlwise wyif, knit across until three stitches are left, slip 1 purlwise wyif, knit 1 stitch, slip 1 purlwise wyif

How to bind off double stockinette stitch

the bind off edge of a swatch in double stockinette stitch

At the end of this article, I quickly want to talk about your bind-off options. You can certainly use the standard bind-off for your project. However, you need to take care that you stay in pattern for this very last row as well.

Normally, you would probably knit two stitches and then lift the last stitch over the first on your right needle. In this case, knit and cast off every stitch the way they appear. So, you knit those knit stitches, but you slip the purl stitches with the yarn in front and then cast them off like that. Otherwise, your bind-off edge might look a bit wonky.

And that’s it. That’s how you knit the double stockinette stitch. Feel free to comment with your questions in case you still have any!

how to knit the double stockinette stitch

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