A step by step tutorial on knitting mitered squares. How to knit them in multiple colors, and how to join mitered squares
Do you want to knit a little baby blanket, a dishcloth or a hue shift afghan? And now you want to know how to knit a mitered square? Then you came to the right place because this tutorial is all about it.
I will not only show you the basic mitered square knitting pattern. I will also present you with a couple of alternative ways to knit them. Some are easier to knit and others look differently.
All in all, this can be a great beginner project. These squares are super fast to knit and don’t require a lot of complicated knitting techniques either. If you add multiple colors, you can even create very complex-looking designs that are super easy to create nevertheless.
So, let’s dive right into it!
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- Cast on an even number of stitches with a long tail cast-on.
For example 24 stitches.
- Knit across the first row and place a stitch marker in the exact center, and knit the remaining stitches.
In the example above: After 12 stitches
- Knit across the second row until you are two stitches before the stitch marker and knit two stitches together (k2tog).
- Slip the marker, SSK, and knit across the remaining stitches.
- Repeat these two rows over and over again until only two stitches remain.
- Break the yarn, thread it on a blunt tapestry needle, and pull the end through the two stitches to secure them.
Here's the summary of the classic mitered square knitting pattern:
Cast on an even number of st
WS: knit across
RS: knit until 2 stitches before the exact center, K2tog, SSK, knit remaining stitches
Repeat until only 2 stitches are left, break yarn, and pull tail through the last stitches
Instead of decreasing with k2tog before and SSK after the stitch marker, you can also decrease with k2tog on both sides. It will change the way the decrease line will look like. Similarly, you could also switch things up. And decrease with SSK before and K2tog after the marker.
The differences are very minor and it really depends on personal knitting preferences and which decrease line you think looks best. There is no right or wrong here.
How to knit a mitered square in two colors (stripes)
The big advantage of mitered squares of normal squares is the fact that through the special technique, the individual rows appear to be at a 45° angle. As a result, you can create some pretty fascinating patterns by just knitting squares and piecing them together. Here’s what you need to do:
Row 1: Start your mitered square the normal way using color A and knit across the first row.
Row 2: Knit the second row (the first decrease row) with color B and tie the two tails into a light knot at the end of the rows.
Row 3: Knit across in color B.
Row 4: Bring up color A again and knit across making sure you trap color B in between your working yarn and your project.
Continue switching colors like this every two rows.
With that method, you can carry the second color across the whole work and you will only end up with 4 tails. Here’s my full tutorial on weaving in tails in case you need to catch up.
If you want stripes that are bigger than 2 rows, you need to break the yarn after each stripe and join in a new color. This will result in quite a lot of tails. If your squares are pretty large, it will not be too much of a bother and can result in some amazing patterns.
Other ways to knit a mitered square
There is not just one way to knit a mitered square. In fact, there are probably a million combinations to achieve the very same result. After all, a mitered square only relies on decreasing two stitches in the middle every two rows. Here are two popular alternatives
Centered double decrease
Instead of decrease on both sides of a stitch marker, you can also use a central double decrease (k3tog) to decrease the middle.
- Cast on an uneven number of stitches
- WS: Knit across
- RS: Knit across until you are two stitches before the center, k3tog, knit the remaining stitches
- Repeat these two rows until there is only one stitch left, break the yarn, and pull the end out of that final k3tog to secure it.
This version will result in a much more pronounced decrease line. Sadly, you cannot use a stitch marker as the middle constantly “moves” in absolute terms.
Centered double increase
You can also construct your little patch top-down. This can be a super helpful technique if you don’t know how many stitches to cast on for a mitered square. Instead of decreasing, you increase along a central line. Here’s how:
- Cast on one stitch
- Row 1: Knit a central double increase into that stitch. (I prefer the backward loop method)
- Row 2: knit across
- Row 3: k1, CDI, k1
- Row 4: knit across
- Continue increasing in the exact middle of your project in every second row and bind off once you are satisfied with the size.