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Add Chevrons to Your Knitting: The Zigzag Knitting Stitch

Have you noticed all those chevron-patterned curtains and rugs lately? Chevrons aren’t just for home décor. Learn how to knit the zigzag stitch — sometimes called the chevron stitch — and you can knit chevrons into garments, or just add a zigzag border to something you already own.

chevron knitting

Before you knit the zigzag stitch, you’ll need to make sure you have a couple of things under your belt — or your needles, as us knitters might say. Check out the slip, slip, knit (SSK) tutorial and the knit two together (k2tog) tutorial and make sure your skills are solid before trying this zigzag stitch.

Here’s how the zigzag stitch pattern is written:

Cast on a multiple of 14 + 2
Row 1 and all odd rows: Purl.
Row 2 and all even rows: K1, knit into the front and back of the next stitch, K4, SSK, K2tog, K4 *Knit into the front and back of the next 2 stitches, K4, SSK, K2tog, K4* Repeat from * to last 2 stitches, knit into the front and back of the next stitch, K1.

Let’s try it! Cast on a multiple of 14, plus two more stitches. I cast on 30 stitches for my swatch.


Row 1: Purl.

row 2

Row 2: Knit the first stitch. Knit into the front and back of the next stitch. To do this, knit the stitch as you normally would but don’t drop it off the left needle.


Stick your needle into the back of the same stitch you just knit. It should look like this:

knit into back

Knit into the back of the stitch and drop it from the left needle.

Knit 4. SSK, referring to the SSK tutorial if you need help. Remember that the ssk decreases stitches and makes them lean to the left.


K2tog, referring to the K2tog tutorial if you’re stuck. Remember that the k2tog decreases stitches to make them lean to the right. This combined with the SSK above will help form the rising point of each zigzag.

follow pattern

Continue to follow the pattern as written above. The pattern will repeat the stitches shown in the photos, just in a different order.

Repeat these two rows to continue the zigzag pattern. It may be hard to see the zigzag when you first start. You may not start to notice it until you have knitted at least 4 rows.

You may also change colors at the beginning of a new row if you’d like. The zigzag is much more visible —and fun — if you alternate colors like I did.

zig zag knitting stitch

How to use the zigzag knitting stitch

You can knit the zigzag as a border, or you can knit an entire item in the chevron pattern. Use as many colors as you’d like. The possibilities are endless!

We have a whole collection of chevron knitting patterns on the blog so you can try your hand at this stitch with a gorgeous pillow, sweater, shawl or something else!

Master the Stitches You Need to For the Chevron Stitch

knitting stitches guide

Stitch your way to knitted joy with seven essential stitches. You’ll use them again and again, including in the chevron knitting stitch!Get My FREE Guide »



I’ve only ever heard this called chevron stitch before.


The issue I have with this is that it is only pretty on one side. How do you make it pretty on both sides?


I think you can use a garter stitch. I am searching for a pattern.

Robin elsner

I do not understand how you are knitting, do you have a YouTube website that I can learn how to do the zig zag knitting, let me know
Robin elsner


Just remember to line up points or holes… Must patterns assume that you know this.

Vivian Brown

I learned to knit left handed but I still enjoy these semi- live demos because I can turn it around in my head for me to knit my way’ Funny thing I Crochet right handed. I write left handed too. Wonder if being Bi-polar helps. LOL


If you are left handed, you can watch the video in a mirror and it will be the correct way for you. This will save you trying to turn it in your head.


Thank you so much for this post!!! The instructions and illustrations are clear and precise. Will let you know how I do with it!


it didnt help after all after the purls it didnt make sense at all

Deborah Hale

What a pity the pattern for the shawl is no longer available…


thank you so much for just writing the pattern ! I get feed up watching someone else do it for 15 mins. All I needed was the pattern.


This is the first time I tried zigzag. Thanks. The instructions and illustrations are great.

jacqueline tucker

im totolly confused could you writ how you did the pattern your way thank you


wait, when you say “knit the front and back of the next two stitches, dyou mean together or apart? im just coming to the realization it was prolly supposed to be together…

Judi R

When I cast on stitches to equal 16 inches width, by the time I have knitted 25 rows can you tell me about what percentage that 16 inches will have shrunk in width? Thanks.

Shelley Malsom

The Baby Waves Blanket says to K2tog, K2, (increase 1 in next st) I don’t under stand the “increase 1 in next st”? I’m stuck 🙁


Can this be done in the round for a cowl? And how do you cast off? Thanks!


Will this Chevron pattern lay flat once blocked and not curl? Because while I’m knitting it, it’s curling.

Elinor Dashwood

No. You’ll need to use a flat border pattern like garter or seed stitch to keep the edges from curling. This stitch is basically just stockinette with increases and decreases, so of course it will curl.

Brenda Safer

This works ok at 30 st but I can’t get it to work at 58, that is 4 x 14 + 2.. Is this correct or does this multiple not work? The pattern instructions are very clear but I can’t make it work at the 58 count.

Elinor Dashwood

It makes far more sense to K3tog (knit three together) than to SSK and then immediately K2tog. K3tog gives you a neat column of single stitches instead of what you have here.


I have a pattern that started the chevron blanket with 5rows of garter stitch which nicely showed as zig zag. I am finished the blanket and the pattern says to do 5 rows of garter again for edge. But this is going straight not zig zag. What do I do?
Also it calls for the side edges in garter too and says “pick up” statices and do garter stitch for 5 rows. How do you pick up on edge?


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