A while back I wrote about some ways of working double YOs on the next row. I still mostly use the standard method, working (k1, p1) in the double YO. Then Denise Plourde wrote on the Stitch Maps Ravelry group about a new method she’d come up with. Here is a description that doesn’t require a login. I find it quite beautiful. Apparently it got me thinking, because a few days after reading about that, I came up with a different way entirely.
All of these methods are ways to cope with one problem: it is impossible to knit (or purl) the two consecutive loops in a double yarnover; the structure of the stitch does not allow it. Try it: the result is a single knit stitch with two wraps around the needle, what’s called an elongated stitch.
I will probably continue using the (k1, p1) method in my swatches and charts as it is straightforward, people are used to it, and I don’t mind how it looks.
Here are eight double yarnovers, each worked differently. I knit this swatch in both laceweight and sportweight to show how variable these can be in appearance. The sportweight also makes it slightly easier to see the structures.
Bottom row, from right to left:
Top row: twisted loops. See the last section in this post for more detail.
Standard method: (k1, p1) in double yo
This is the method I’ve seen used most often in knitting patterns: knit one in the double YO, then purl one. I usually don’t bother to slip either loop from the needle until I’ve worked both stitches, but it doesn’t matter.
This method is worked identically on either the right or the wrong side of the fabric: (k1, p1) in double yo.
Variant of standard method: (p1, k1) in double yo
You might think that the order of the k1 and the p1 doesn’t matter. However, in many yarns, it can make a big difference. Working (p1, k1) instead of (k1, p1) often makes a bumpy little knot that sticks down into the open area of the double YO.
My guess is that this has to do with yarn structure: the yarns are essentially being plied around each other at the transition between the two stitches. In one case they are being plied in the same direction of the yarn’s twist, and in the other, the opposite direction. I haven’t taken the time to see which matters. I think yarn thickness might also play a role: I think I see this effect more often with thicker yarns.
Barbara Walker calls this a picot eyelet.
PYOP then Bunny Ears
Denise Plourde says she was dissatisfied with the (k1,p1) method because of the occasional bump in the middle. This method makes for a smooth appearance of two knit stitches coming out of the double YO.
This is a three row method: double yo, work (p1, yo, p1) in double yo (or k1, yo, k1 if working in the round), and then decrease the middle yo away on the third row, ideally with a centered single decrease with center stitch at the back, though depending on what else is happening on the third row, it could be just a regular decrease on one side or the other. The text on this stitch map explains how this works in more detail. Click on “swatch photos” at the bottom to see her swatch.
I think this is lovely. I don’t think I’m going to use it in my secret code stitches because it doesn’t fit the pattern of having every YO on the chart be meaningful. You are welcome to sneak it in as you please, of course! And I might use it in other stitch patterns.
Slip one loop, purl the next
Sometime in the last couple of years, I started seeing people talk online about a new increase. I have yet to see a standardized name for it. Here’s one description of it.
I think of a double YO being actually a single stitch with two loops. A knit stitch wrapped twice is called an elongated stitch. A double YO is basically an elongated YO. The second stitch doesn’t come in until row two. This made me think about working the second stitch in terms of increases.
I fiddled around with this version for a while, and then realized that the wrong side version was easiest as “slip one loop of the double YO purlwise, then purl the next loop”. This keeps the loops separated neatly on the next row, ready for working. If working in the round (so all rows are right-side), follow the chart on the second round- “knit the first loop, then slip the second loop purlwise”.
I really didn’t know what to expect from this, and it ended up being a pleasant surprise – it’s symmetrical and tidy. It does make the double YO slightly teardrop shaped. It’s closest in appearance to the (k1, p1) version, but without the twist in the middle.
I don’t think I’d like this if row one and row two are in different colors (in variegated or self-striping yarn, say). But try it and see for yourself!
Twist each loop while working it
A standard way of working a really large multiple yarnover is to work each loop through the back leg. This is really great for something like the Auge doily (aka Lille Rund Serviet). It doesn’t look so great for just a double YO, at least when both stitches are twisted the same direction. I do like both the version with the horizontal bar showing in front (see my Lark in the Morning stitch pattern) and the version that makes both stitches coming out of the YO look knitted.
Another feature of this way to work a double YO is that it makes the hole smaller. Whether this is desirable or not depends on the viewer and the overall stitch pattern.
This blog post explains in more detail how to do this, though please ask if it’s unclear. I might need to write an updated version.