German Slip Stitch Selvedges

A Simple Way to Neaten Up your Selvedges

This knitting technique is an easy one to learn and creates a 'chain stitch' appearance on the selvedges* of your work. It is simply an attractive edge-finishing technique, and an optional extra detail you can choose to add to your projects.

*Selvedges = the knitted edges created from the first and last stitches of every row

i.e. the side edges of your work.

Although in the video below I am adding the German slip edges to stockinette stitch as a demonstration, you can add the slip stitch edging to other patterns too, such as seed stitch and garter stitch.


(Please note that German slip stitch edges are added onto an existing pattern and only involve the first stitch and last stitch of each row.)

Row 1 and all odd-numbered rows

First stitch: Knit stitch

Last stitch: Slip the stitch purlwise with the yarn in back (i.e. with the yarn behind the needles/away from you)

Row 2 and all even-numbered rows

First stitch: Purl stitch

Last stitch: Slip the stitch purlwise with the yarn in front (i.e. with the yarn in front of the needles/towards you)

If you are going to be adding these slip stitch edges to a pattern that doesn't already include them, you should add two extra stitches onto the number of stitches that the pattern recommends that you cast on.

E.g. if a pattern tells you to cast on 60 stitches, then cast on 62.

This is so that you keep the original pattern intact and unaltered by the addition of the slip stitch edging.

Even though adding these 2 extra stitches should add barely any extra width to your knitting project, it would be best if you do a test swatch before knitting something where accurate sizing is vital (e.g. a jumper).

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