Learn, Love, Knit: Using Duplicate Stitch to Achieve Your Style Goals

|Sponsored| When I was a kid, one of the best things about road trips was staying in hotels and watching Nick at Nite on cable. We watched all the classics of 60’s television: Adam West as Batman, episodes of Get Smart, and my ongoing style hero, Mary Tyler Moore. It’s also where I found one of my personal wardrobe goals: a collection of monogrammed sweaters, à la Laverne DeFazio of Laverne and Shirley.

For the burgeoning knitter, it is duplicate stitch that will make monogrammed dreams come true. Duplicate stitch is an embroidery technique that mimics the appearance of knit stitches. It looks like stranded knitting or intarsia, but you don’t have to juggle multiple yarns at the same time. It’s an easy way to apply some customized, knitted love to one of your finished objects.

With the help of Knit & Stitch Creative, you will build a reversible patchwork throw that will reflect your knitting journey. Photograph courtesy of Knit & Stitch Creative from CreaCrafts.

The art of duplicate stitch is covered in the clear step-by-step instructions supplied through the CreaCrafts subscription service, Knit & Stitch Creative. Each month, subscribers receive four Knit & Stitch Creative issues. With each issue, you’ll get 2 balls of Crea yarn, all the needles to get started, and an inspirational magazine filled with customization techniques and bonus projects. The installment lessons will result in a stunning reversible patchwork throw that you will cherish far beyond those first stitches.


Use Duplicate Stitch to Make It Personal

First, you have to work your piece in stockinette stitch. Duplicate stitch is worked by tracing the little “V” shape formed by knitting right-side rows and purling wrong-side rows. This technique won’t work with other stitch patterns like seed stitch or reverse stockinette stitch.

Practice duplicate stitch on a swatch before you try to monogram your sweater

Second, duplicate stitch should be worked in a strongly contrasting color; no one is going to see all your lovely work if you use white yarn on a pale yellow background. A good way to test this is to take a black and white photo of your yarns together. If both colors appear to be the same shade of gray, odds are your embroidery pattern isn’t going to stand out.

Third, the yarn you use to work the duplicate stitch pattern should be the same weight as the yarn for the rest of your project. Worsted-weight yarn on a fingering-weight background is going to look funny, and laceweight yarn on a bulky background will barely be visible.

Here’s how you work duplicate stitch:

1. To work a horizontal row of stitches, insert needle 1⅛” (3 cm) below the position of the embroidery. Bring needle out at the pointed base of the first stitch, leaving a 4” (10 cm) tail at the front. Pass the needle behind the pointed base of stitch above and pull yarn through.

Stitch illustration courtesy of Knit & Stitch Creative from Crea Crafts.

2. Insert the needle back into the base of the first stitch and bring it out to the left at the base of the next stitch.

Stitch illustration courtesy of Knit & Stitch Creative from Crea Crafts.

3. Pass the needle behind the pointed base of the stitch above and pull the yarn through. Insert the needle back into the base of the same stitch, then bring it out to the left at the base of the next stitch. Continue to work in this way for the number of stitches required.

Stitch illustration courtesy of Knit & Stitch Creative from Crea Crafts.

4. To work a vertical row of stitches, work the first stitch as before, but bring the needle out at the base of the stitch above and repeat.

Stitch illustration courtesy of Knit & Stitch Creative from Crea Crafts.


Duplicate stitch is just one of the many inspirational techniques you will learn with the help of a Knit & Stitch Creative subscription from CreaCrafts. Join us on a journey where you will learn, love, and knit. You will find yourself living the handmade life before you know it.

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