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How to Knit Garter Stitch Bobble Bind-off [Tutorial]

Sometimes pictures say more than a thousand words. Sometimes no matter how many times you read a section of instructions, it just doesn't make sense until you see it. Here's a tutorial for the garter-stitch bobble bind-off used in Grand Fir.

1. The beginning of the bind-off row starts a little differently depending on whether you're working on the Medium or the Large size. For the Medium, bind off the first two stitches (essentially knitting three). The third stitch of the row is on the right-hand needle; you'll be working the first bobble into the fourth stitch (first one on the left-hand needle).

For the Large it's a lot simpler: just knit the first stitch. You'll be working the first bobble into the second stitch of the row.

2. Start the garter-stitch bobble: (K1, K1 tbl, K1, K1 tbl, K1) into the next stitch. You've now turned one stitch into five stitches.

3. Turn the work — the wrong side of the work is now facing you. Knit the 5 stitches you just created.

4. Turn the work — you're now on the right side again. Knit the same 5 stitches again.

5. Repeat Steps 3–4 once more. You now have five rows and two garter ridges in the bobble.

6. Still on the right side of the work, pass the second stitch on the right-hand needle over the first, kind of like working a SKP (slip, knit, psso) decrease.

7. Repeat Step 6 until only one stitch remains on the right-hand needle. That's a bobble completed!

8. Next, bind off the next three stitches using the Elastic Bind-off: knit the next stitch, place both stitches on the right back to the left-hand needle and knit them together through the back loops. Do this twice more. Now there's three stitches bound off after the bobble.

9. Continue in the same manner, repeating Steps 2–8 until the end of the row. When there's no more space to work a bobble, bind off the remaining stitches (3 for the Medium, 1 for the Large) as you would normally.

When you make a bobble in every fourth stitch on the bind-off row, every third bobble lines up in the center stitch of the pine cone shapes in the lace border. Pin the border through these bobbles when blocking to create a pretty scalloped edge.

To make the bind-off row go faster — and to use less yarn — you can line up the bobbles just on the tips of the pine cones and use Elastic Bind-off on the stitches in between.

If you don't like the look or texture of the garter-stitch bobbles, you can also do conventional smooth knit bobbles. In this case purl 5 on every wrong side row of the bobble (Step 3).

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Susanna Winter is a knitwear designer, creating timeless and elegant pieces with clean lines. She has been knitting for over 20 years, knit blogging since 2007, and designing knitting patterns professionally since 2016.

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