Knitting back backwards.

WMarksII's picture

We've had alot of discussion about continental verses english (I do both....oh jeez...does that make me BI?) But I have the opportunity to take a workshop in a few months on how to knit back backwards. It's supposed to eliminate having to turn your work, especially for big, heavy projects like afgans or when you're doing an edging with a small amount of stitches (turning everything around every six stitches or so like a shawl edging), and also with certain entrelac. Anyone do this?


trpc's picture

No-but I want to! I saw Meg Swanson knitting backwards on the Knitting Glossary DVD while demonstrating entrelac. I'm jealous.

WMarksII's picture

Come to Indianapolis in April....Candace Eisner Strick is teaching the class.

YugiDean's picture

WTF...that sounds just as complicated as writing with both hands at the same time in two separate languages (like DaVinci could do). My head is spinning just THINKING about it. LOL Let us all know how the class is and how difficult the technique really is.

"Men can starve from a lack of self-realization as much as they can from a lack of bread." --Richard Wright

kiwiknitter's picture

It is not difficult to do really. I have used it on several occasions and found it useful. It is also good if one is knitting a stranded (such as Fair Isle) pattern flat because following the colour pattern on the purl side is very challenging (the reason Meg Swanson does it). The only downside for me was that this method really taxes my wrists and could have easily led to RSI.

Knit like the wind!

Never trust a man who, when left alone in a room with a tea cozy, doesn't try it on.  ~Billy Connolly

purlyman's picture

Have never heard of it! Looks intriguing. Matt and I moved to Denver from Indy 1 1/2 years ago. Where is she teaching the class? Mass Ave Knit Shop?


WMarksII's picture

Yes, she'll be at Mass Ave.

teejtc's picture

I have a friend who does this. Her polish Grandma taught her -- she makes it look so easy. I think it looks awful confusing. It does sound like a great skill though.

Grace and Peace,

HuskerChub's picture

I taught myself and do it any time I have the opportunity. Like you said, it is GREAT for entraloc and doing stockinette st over a small number of sts. I knit 98% of the time continental so purling slows me down esp when there are a few sts. If anyone wants to try it, let me see if I can explain.

With yarn in Right hand, slip the left needle into the back leg of the st as it sits on the right needle. Wrap the yarn COUNTERCLOCKWISE (from back to front) around the left needle tip and pull the stitch through. You have made 1 st on the left needle, continue to end of row.

Here is a quick link I found with picys.

Have fun trying this technique, it can be addictive.

VillageKnittiot's picture

I taught myself to knit backwards while doing an Entrelac project. It cuts down on all the turning the work. especially when the rows are short.

RareSteek's picture

This has some good pictures of the technique.


MMario's picture

yup _ do it all the time - and not just for stockinette - because when knitting backward I can do a Norwegian purl and not have to shift the yarn.
MMario - ambiguity is cultivated, it doesn't happen in a vacuum!

MMario - I'm not divorced from reality - we're having a trial separation