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This month’s special Ask Patty features a letter from a particularly challenging knitter: me.

Dear Future Patty,

You’ve always said that knitting is a living craft and that we learn new things all the time. So my question: Do you ever change your mind about a trick? Do you ever find that you were wrong, and re-unvent one of your unventions?

Just wondering,

Past Patty

Dear Past Patty,

Well, “wrong” might be a bit harsh, but funny you should ask. 

We often learn from our own questioning, but also from our own answering. That’s right—sometimes we’re explaining the how and why of something we’ve done a million times, and a brand-new idea will just pop into our heads.

Recently I was working on the circular trick section of my book (finally handed in!) when I had two such moments. Brand-new ideas.

German Short Rows—Past Is Prelude

The first ah-ha moment had to do with hiding German short rows when returning to work in the round. I first wrote about the trick I’d always done here. My original solution—knitting the legs of the double stitch (DS) separately—was effective, but the DS wasn’t invisible: 


At left, the DS made on the RS row closed nicely with a k2tog. On the right, when we close a DS created on a WS with a k2tog, we get the sad hole.

The ah-ha? We’ll work over the gap!

Step 1: Work to one stitch before the DS and slip that stitch as if to knit.

Step 2: Advance the DS to the tip of your left needle so you can enter the first leg of the DS through the back loop. Getting into this stitch can be tricky, so if you have trouble, pull down on the back of DS on your left needle to reveal that first leg. Wrap your yarn around your right needle to knit and pull it through that first leg.

Step 3: While hanging onto the second leg of the DS (so you don’t drop it accidentally), remove the stitch just knit.

Step 4: Pass the slipped stitch over the stitch you just made (into first leg of the DS), and give a snug to your working yarn.

Step 5: Knit the second leg of the DS through the back loop.

Now you have a filled-in, invisible hidden German short row. 

Jogless Bind-Off? Why Not?

If I saw this scene in a movie, I wouldn’t believe it.

My book was finished. I hit Save and was going to send it in the morning after one more read. I lay my weary head down on the pillow to go to sleep, and a thought popped into my head: “It can’t be that simple. Would that really work?” I jumped out of bed, cast on, and it worked! I added one final trick to the book in the morning.

The dreaded jog at the bind-off—most knitters solve this ugly issue by using the tail to connect the bind-off braid. It works well enough, but you do have to connect it over a height difference.

I combined the trick for a jogless cast-on join (in my very first column) with my slinky insights (in this column) with the jogless purl stripe (in this column).

The result? The “It’s so simple I can’t believe I never thought of it” jogless bind-off!

Step 1: Remove your end-of-round marker and slip the first stitch of the round, purlwise, from the left needle to the right needle. This will now be the last stitch you bind off. Now your working yarn is coming from the second stitch on the right needle.

Step 2: Begin your bind-off by working the first two stitches on your left needle, and passing the first stitch over. (This is the second and third stitch of the round.) You’ll have a small float of yarn that goes across the back of your slipped, unworked stitch. Just like the cast-on!

Step 3: When you bind off your last stitch (the first stitch of the round that you slipped) you’ll have connected the last stitch of the round to the first stitch of the round. Cut the yarn and lift up on the needle, pulling that tail out of the final stitch you just made.

Notice the difference between a regular bind-off and this one. The first stitch bound off and the last stitch bound off are now at the same level.

Complete your masterpiece by using a tapestry needle and the tail to connect that last braid as shown here. Even with a chunky yarn, you’ll have an invisible join.

The moral of the story: Question everything, and just because you were right the first time, doesn’t mean you can’t make it righter. Yeah, that’s a word.



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About The Author

Patty Lyons is a nationally recognized knitting teacher and technique expert. In her pursuit of training the mindful knitter, Patty is known for teaching the “why” in addition to the “how.” She specializes in sweater design and sharing her love of the much-maligned subjects of gauge and blocking.

You can find Patty at her website and on Ravelry.

Do you have a problem you’d like Patty to tackle? Write to her at



  • Oh I want this book!

    • Me too! What’s the projected publishing date?

      • Early October, 2022

        • Oh Boy! Just in time for my birthday! Happy Birthday to Me!!!!

  • The bind off. So clever.
    Thank you!

  • With a perspective like that, I’m sure you’ll love the book Think Again by Adam Grant.

    • Thank you so much! I read the Times review and ordered it immediatly!

    • Amazing!

  • Patty, thank you! I’ve been staring sadly at the beginnings of my Karelia with all the GSR holes, knowing it deserves better. Past Max and Present Max are happy to start over now!

  • Definitely not wrong before, just even more right now.
    Fun mind benders to follow this morning, and thank you, as I’m about to cast on at least one project that is very particular about specifying German short rows and had to look them up.

  • The bind off trick? Brilliant! My eyes went wide with the simplicity of it!

  • Could this be shown in a short video? Thanks

  • When does the book come out? A must have!

    • Early Oct, 2022

  • Patty is amazing! I want that book. I use her cast on trick all the time. Of course, I never thought of using it in the bind off row. That’s what makes Patty amazing.

  • A group of scientists I work with is preparing a workshop and one of our sessions will be, “Unanswered Questions and Unquestioned Answers”. I like the idea of revisiting things, because the answers can change as we learn new stuff! That bind off trick is smart.

  • Thank you Patty! Coming across this minor annoyance on my current sweater. Brilliant bind off trick!
    Looking forward to your book too.

  • Mind blown on that jogless bind off!

  • Wow! I am so impressed! And yes I am going to buy your book because I thought I didn’t need it!

    • That was a joke. I *do* need a Patty Lyons book.

  • Oh, two brilliant ideas! I used German short rows on the yoke of a cotton sweater, and they really show. Even though I was very careful with the tension. I’ll bet this would avoid the problem! I’m definitely buying your book.

  • I am so impressed with how your mind works. These are brilliant! Thank you for sharing and can’t wait to get my hands on your book.

  • Wow. There is joy in these details. Thank you, Patty.

  • Oh, beautiful! I’m willing to give GSR in the round another try; I didn’t like the little holes either. Thank you!

  • It appears I’m the only one to not get it. So in step 2 after the slip stitch, you k into the 2nd stitch then take the sl st over the knitted stitch ? Is that it? That simple? I hope so, I think I love it. Let me know.

    • Give it a try. Often we read things and when it’s on our needles we think, ah, of course.

      Step 2 says to START your bind off, so that means that first stitch that you slipped w/o working it is now on your RH needle. NOT part of the bind off. Instead you begin working your bind off with what is now the first st on your LH needle.

      Step 2: Begin your bind-off by working into the first stitch on the left needle. (This is the second stitch of the round.) You’ll have a small float of yarn that goes across the back of your slipped, unworked stitch. Just like the cast-on!

      So binding off is knitting two stitches and passing the first worked stitch over the second worked stitch. Knit two pass over, knit pass over knit pass over, Just like usual. Which means when you get to the last stitch you are knitting what is not the last st of the round, but the first.

      Then you’ll see in step 3:

      Step 3: When you bind off your last stitch, you’ll have connected the last stitch of the round to the first stitch of the round. Cut the yarn and lift up on the needle, pulling that tail out of the final stitch you just made.

      The first stitch that you slipped f

  • SO excited about the book!!!!

  • Both these tricks are mind-blowing! Thanks to your questioning, my knitting will be “less worse”. And yes, you can be righter.

    • And as we all know, less worse = more better

  • Awesome sauce! That picture of the jogless bind off is worth a thousand, thousand words!! Thank you Patty and I will be in line to buy your book for my birthday month!

  • Thank you, Patty!!! Can’t wait to try these on the next project.

  • Patty, I just watched your sleeve setting video. My shoulder seams and set-in sleeves are now so much better, yes, they are righter! Thank you! And I will use this column too!

  • Patty – Your instructions couldn’t have come at a better time. I just tried your method for German short row pick ups in a sweater I have been working on. FABULOUS results! Thank you!

    • oooh, so exciting. I LOVE to see pictures of your stuff, so if you post it on instagram, tag me, and of course follow me 🙂 –

  • Jogless bindoff? Omg yes please!! A definite game changer for me.

  • You are a genius! These tips are awesome. Can’t wait for the book. The more I knit, the more I realize it’s the little things that make a big difference. Thanks.

  • Thank you!!

  • mind blown. Thank you!

  • Dear Future Johanna,
    Be sure to thank Patty for all her wonderful tips that you’ve incorporated into your knitting. Also, be sure to get her book the minute it becomes available.
    Very grateful,
    Past Johanna

  • So, I just tried this. To get things to line up I had to pick up that little float, knit it and pass the last stitch over it in order for things to line up. Looks like it worked as well as in your picture but you didn’t say to do that in your instructions! Or did you mean for us to slip the first stitch purlwise, then knit the next two stitches and start the bind off with those? Just wondering. Clever trick!

    • Yep, as the steps say, you slip that first stitch as if to purl. That is now the END of your BO:

      Step 1: Remove your end-of-round marker and slip the first stitch of the round, purlwise, from the left needle to the right needle. Now your working yarn is coming from the second stitch on the right needle.

      Step 2: Begin your bind-off by working into the first stitch on the left needle.

      So, it says to begin your bind off. To bind off you knit the first two stitches, then pass the first st over.

      Sounds like you didn’t start your BO with the first st on the left needle, but rather started your BO with the slipped stitch.

      Try it again as written and it will line up perfectly!

  • It’s like EZ predicted years ago-you are fulfilling the prophecy of Unventedness with such a remarkable trick!!!! Thank you!!!

  • The best bind-off trick ever ! Thank you !

  • I appreciate all your clever tips. I have been knitting about sixty years and love to learn new techniques. Yesterday I used your sloped bind-off for the neckline of an Aran raglan sweater. Brilliant. Also, I am blocking it BEFORE knitting the neckline ribbing and buttonbands. Thank you!

  • Genius! Thank you.

  • Hi Patty, are you still reading this thread?! I’m working on a sweater (Bling T) by a certain Laura we both know and love, and she suggests German Short Rows for those of us wanting a higher finished neckline. These additional rows are done IN THE ROUND. I’m using the updated tip in your Knitting Bag of Tricks book (p.154) for a cleaner NO MORE HOLES finish. However, I am getting an unsightly difference between the GSRs done on the wrong side rows versus the right side rows. This is after I work them together with your cool slip-knit thru back loop-pass over-knit thru back loop trick for the DS (double stitch). It’s the GSRs done on the wrong sides that are giving me grief! They almost look like mini cables. Of course, these are right up at the neckline WITH BEADS placed below, so they’re in a very visible area. The yarn I’m using is a linen cotton blend so it’s starting to get a bit tired looking from all my ripping back and trying again with different slip iteration attempts. HELP?!?

  • Great – I should certainly pronounce, impressed with your website. I had no trouble navigating through all tabs as well as related information ended up being truly simple to do to access. I recently found what I hoped for before you know it at all. Reasonably unusual. Is likely to appreciate it for those who add forums or something, site theme . a tones way for your client to communicate. Nice task..

  • Duh! Why didn’t I-you-we think of this before? Thank you for sharing your daytime AND bedtime unventions with us. I fall in love all over again, with the magic and simplicity of knitting, when I read your tips.

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