Why Does My Knitting Machine Drop Stitches?

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There is nothing more frustrating than getting halfway through your knitting project on your knitting machine and noticing something doesn’t look quite right. This will most likely mean that you have dropped a stitch or two at some point and you will have to go back and fix the mistake.

So, why does your knitting machine drop stitches? If your knitting machine keeps dropping stitches, it most likely has something to do with how the stitch gets put on the needle. The stitch was put on the needle the wrong way, or the machine knit through the back of a stitch instead of the front. The most efficient way to catch this is constantly looking at your knitting.

Dealing with drop stitches can discourage you, but you shouldn’t let it. There are things you can do to prevent a drop stitch and you will get more efficient the longer you use your knitting machine. Let’s keep reading to leaner more!

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What Does Dropped a Stitch Mean?

When someone says they dropped a stitch, they are saying that the stitch fell off the end if their knitting needle. This happens when you are making a knit or purl and wrap the yarn around the needle two or three times instead of once. Dropping a stitch can be done on purpose or on accident.

Drop stitches can be used on purpose as a fun way to bring some originality to your piece. You can find patterns that use a drop stitch, and it will show you exactly when to drop a stitch to get the best results from your project.

One of the most popular drop stitches is called a seafoam stitch1. This is where you wrap different stitches across a row a different number of times. Utilizing this stitch will leave you with a neat wavy appearance that is extremely popular for scarves.

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If you happen to drop a stitch on accident, you can luckily fix the problem pretty easily. The more you knit, the more you will learn, and you will be able to prevent drop stitches from occurring at all.

How Do You Fix a Dropped Stitch on a Knitting Machine?

Knitting machines are meant to make knitting easier, but sometimes they will still accidentally drop a stitch. If this happens to you, don’t panic. This is a problem that can be solved easier than you might think.

To fix a drop stitch on a knitting machine, you are going to need to use a crochet hook. Search your knitting where the yarn is coming unraveled for the last stitch that has remained intact. Take that last loop and place it on your crochet hook. You will want the handle of the crochet hook facing you and the outside of the machine and push the hook through the loop toward the inside.

If you place your crochet hook from the inside, the stitch will be backwards and won’t match the rest of your work. It will also be extremely beneficial to place the hook under the strand of yarn that is directly above the loop you will be hooking. This will help you start fixing your stitch in the right direction.

Pull the single strand of yarn through the loop you just hooked. Repeat this process until you are back at the top of the knitting machine and can hook the yarn back on the needle of the machine. This is a super quick and easy fix, so there is no need to worry when you notice it happen!

How Do You Prevent a Dropped Stitch?

Since dropped stitches are so frustrating, it can be extremely beneficial to learn what you can do to prevent them. There is a simple way to prevent dropping stitches off your knitting needles. All you need are two corks, acrylic paint, and a paintbrush. The corks can be any size or shape, but it is important they are both the same size.

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First, you will fit the cork on the end of your needle. Simply stab the cork onto your knitting needle. This should be easy because cork is a porous material. Take the other cork and repeat the same process.

After you have your corks fitted, take them off the knitting needles and get ready to paint them. With your acrylic paint and your paintbrush, begin painting your cork however you wish. You can paint them a solid color or you can try to add a design to them. Paint in thin layers and let each layer dry before you try to add the next.

When the corks are dry, you can place them back on your knitting needles. Not only will this prevent drop stitches, but you will also have a cute decoration for the back of your needles. This will give you peace of mind both while you are knitting and when you have to set your knitting down.

How Do You Pick Up a Dropped Stitch Several Rows Down?

Picking up a dropped stitch from several rows down can seem intimidating, but don’t worry. The process is actually pretty simple, and you will have the stitch fixed in no time. Just like with the knitting machine, you are going to need a crochet hook to fix a dropped stitch from rows down. The proper way to fix it will depend on the type of stitch you are using.

If you are using a stockinette stitch, turn the purl side so that it is facing away from you. Take the crochet hook and reach through the dropped stitch, picking up the next bottom strand during the process. Pull the strand through the dropped stitch to create a new stitch. Repeat this as many times as necessary until you are caught up.

If you are using a garter stitch, you will need to alternate how you pull the strands through the dropped stitch. When you determine which is the dropped stitch, pull it through in the opposite direction of the last stitch. After you get that one through, alternate and pull the next strand through.

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Continue alternating the stitches until you catch the dropped stitch back up to the top. The sooner you can catch a dropped stitch, the easier time you will have fixing it. The most important thing to remember is not to panic because the problem can be fixed.

Final Thoughts

It can be frustrating when your knitting machine drops stitches, especially because the machine is supposed to make knitting quicker and easier. Luckily, you can easily fix a dropped stitch on your knitting machine with a crochet needle and a little bit of patience. You just need to find the dropped stitch and work it back through your project.

If you don’t notice your dropped stitch until it is several rows down, you can still fix it. You will also need to get a crochet needle, find the dropped stitch, and work it through your project until you reach the top.

When you are knitting with needles, you can easily prevent dropped stitches with the help of some corks. All you need to do is fit the corks to the needles, decorate them, and keep them on your needles when you are using them and when you set them down.

Make sure to follow my tips and recommend products to ensure your knitting project turns out amazing! Also, don’t forget to check out my other articles for all your sewing Q&A’s. Happy knitting!

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