Loose last stitch

The last stitch on my knitting is always extremely loose. How can I help rectify the situation? It's extremely annoying.


The last stitch frequently is.  If it's the very last stitch when you cast off, instead of pulling the thread through the final loop, pick-up and knit one stitch down the side.  Pass the now second from the last stitch over, then pull the thread through the final loop.  This should now be tight(er).

It you're having a problem at the end of a row in regular knitting, try knitting into the back of the stitch instead of the front.  This twists and tightens the stitch.

Failing that - don't worry - we all have this problem - it's because there is no following stitch to tighten-up the tension.

Welcome to the site.

Do you mean the last stitich of every row or the very last stitch of a project? 

If it's the last stitch in every row I'd just pull it tighter. The very last stitch is going to be pulled through & woven in so it can can be pulled tight too.

Do you think that you are a loose knitter or a tight one?

Good luck,



Knit away, knit away

"They say best men are moulded out of faults; and, for the most, become much more the better for being a little bad." William Shakespeare, Measure for Measure

Jordan's picture

Hello--  Though the question has already been answered, I thought I'd share how I deal with the issue.  It's interesting that there are multiple solutions. 

For the problem of the loose last stitch on every row, I knit or purl the first three stitches of the next row a bit tightly.  This keeps the tension a little more consistent near the edges.  It doesn't entirely solve the problem though.  Simon's suggestion of knitting into the back of the stitch sounds interesting.  I'll have to try it.

I've tried another method for tightening up the final stitch that is cast off. Just like Simon describes, pick up the stitch below the final loop.  Leave that on the right needle, slip the final loop (as if to knit), then knit those two loops together (like the knit at the end of a SSK).  Now you've got two loops, so just pass the first one over the one you just made.  I've only tried this once or twice, so I'll definitely have to try Simon's method and compare.  Honestly, by the time I cast off, I'm usually so excited to be done that I forget and just pull the stitch tightly. 

i like to slip the last stitch in the previous row also.  It will help a little with tension.  Then pick up an extra stitch around the side and slip it over.  good luck!

Randy Bear's picture

Keep in mind that if you are knitting an individual piece of a whole garment (say the sleeve of a sweater), the last stich is going to be used up in the seam when you construct the final garment.  So, loose edges will just be bound up inside the garment and no one will see them.

I bought a book about knitting and crocheting that had lots of interesting techniques for the last stich in a row.  One of their suggestions was to slip the last stich on the row rather than using it on the row (knit or purl).  When you start on the next row, knit or purl it in pattern.  The extra yarn that always seems to end up on that last stich is used up as it stretches to become part of the next row and it doesn't LOOK as though it is very loose.

Of course, as with any technique, try it out and see if it works with your current project.  Some of these techniques work well in one pattern and screw up another (in particular, patterns that tend to pull in, like cables, can cause all sorts of problems at the edges).


jrrenola's picture

I'm very very new to knitting (been at it for less than a month). Will that looseness improve over time? I have that same problem with a verrrrrry loose last stitch in a row. I'm glad to know it's not necessarily just me!