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Tips for Fixing Knitting Errors

At one time or another in your knitting past, you’ve probably made a knitting error. We’ve all been there! Did you rip out the entire sweater? Give up and throw it in the back of the closet?

Next time you make a knitting error, check out these tips to try and save yourself from a total knitting meltdown.

Person's Hands Knitting Orange Garmet
Person's Hands Knitting Orange Garmet

Dropped stitches

This is one of the most common knitting errors. A dropped stitch is just that — a stitch that drops off your needle. Sometimes you don’t discover the dropped stitch until you’ve knitted several more rows. No need to rip out all those rows! You can use a crochet hook to bring that little stitch right back where it belongs.

See Bluprint instructor Stefanie Japel’s step-by-step dropped stitch tutorial.

Fix-it Collage of Scarfs and Knitting Needles

Mis-crossed cables

It’s easy to forget which way your cable needle should hang. A mis-crossed cable isn’t the end of the world (nor is any knitting error, for that matter!) and some people probably won’t even notice. But if you’re critical of your knitting, you’ll never be able to look at the project again without knowing about that mis-crossed cable. See Stefanie Japel demonstrate how to fix mis-crossed cables.

Lace knitting mistakes

Knitting lace can bring on knitting mistakes easily since you’re working with such intricate designs. Sometimes you might forget to make a yarn-over and not discover it until the next row. Or maybe you forgot to decrease and now your stitch count is off. As with dropped stitches, no need to do any ripping! Bluprint instructor and lace knitting expert Laura Nelkin shows you how to easily fix lace knitting mistakes without starting from the beginning. demonstrating the fixes for those of you who prefer visuals over text.

If you want even more tips from Laura, you can also enroll in her popular Mastering Lace Shawls class!

Woman's Hands Knitting Yellow Garment

Ripping back

I know I said you shouldn’t rip the whole thing out if you make a mistake. But what if you just made the mistake a few stitches back and you already spotted it? Woo hoo!

When ripping back, there’s no need to drop all the stitches off the needle and yank on the yarn. In my experience, this can cause even more problems. Instead, rip back the right way, making sure your stitches sit on the needle exactly the way they should.

If you made mistakes on an old sweater and simply hate the way it fits, don’t abandon it! Check out Sweater Surgery with Carol Feller to find out how to disassemble and then magically reassemble your sweater into one you’ll look forward to wearing.

Come back to the Bluprint Blog on Thursday for more knitting fun! We’ll be sharing a tutorial on how to knit jogless stripes in the round.

What’s your most common knitting error? How do you fix it?


Morag Rothwell

My error? When I was knitting a jacket for my baby when pregnant. I was 21 and although my Mum had taught me how to knit I wasn’t very good but I was going to knit a jacket or die in the attempt! Well, I did both fronts and went to join them to the back…. they both faced left! Don’t ask me how I did it I don’t know, but I couldn’t face doing it again so she never got it, but I think I still have it in a bag somewhere and now she’s 30 with a 2 year old of her own! Needless to say I did not knit for my grandson!


Please don’t feel bad: I have an ex-mother-in-law who knew all things invented and many yet to be. My fiance bought a $1400 designer suit for our wedding, and his mother did not trust the artisans to hem the pants. So she measured, and measured, and measured… and cut the same leg twice.

Only because I knew the designer’s partncr did my husband marry looking like a grown-up, at 6’11” and 300 lbs. Her comment? At that price the second pair should be included anyway!

jennifer scott

Please help! I am knitting a baby blanket and I am quite far along. However, within the first inch or two, I knit a stitch but split the yarn accidently…. so now I have a loose single strand stitch in the border of the blanket. (Garter stitch border with textured pattern above.) How do I fix this annoying single strand of yarn without pulling everything out and beginning again? Your help would be much appreciated. Kindest regards, Jenny

Marlene Stockard

Try treating it as a dropped stitch and follow the directions in the article above.


I forgot to put in the button holes in a pattern.Is there any way to fix this without tearing out?


Maybe this answer is too late, but just as an fyi I sometimes deliberately leave button holes out. After I’m all done I almost always want the buttons in a different spot then I knit them. So after I’m done, and the sweater is blocked, ends woven in, etc. I’ll place my buttons exactly where I want them, and find the spot where I would now like my buttonhole to magically appear. I’ll slowly widen that area and do a satin stitch around that spot. I’ll work the button through until the hole is big enough. I’ve even carefully cut the yarn in the button band and used matching thread to secure the ends into my satin stitch. Fray check may have a place here. (I haven’t tried it) I figure if a sweater can be steeked, then certainly a buttonhole should be doable.


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