Hems

Occasionally a garment’s knitted edges are left without bands of any kind and are simply allowed to roll, but most of the time there will be ribbing, a band, or a hem. These finish the edges nicely, and prevent them from rolling or curling up.  In this section we will cover the three most common hems made on the LK 150 knitting machine. These can be found on hats, slippers, gloves and mittens, sweaters, etc; in fact, just about any place a neat, folded edge is appropriate. The ribbing tutorial has it’s own section, and will not be repeated here.

folded hem 1
folded hem 2

Folded Hem

We will use 20 needles for this sample. We will also presume that the pattern tension should be 5.

Cast on 20 stitches with waste yarn. Knit 8 rows. Clip waste yarn and knit 1 row of ravel cord. Remove ravel cord from the yarn feeder.

Thread carriage with main yarn, and set the stitch dial 1 number tighter than main garment tension. (If the pattern says to use Tension 5, set the dial to 4.) Knit 16 rows. Remove the cast on comb, and weights if you have been using them.

folded hem 3

Hold the cast on edge up to the needle bed. Fold the waste yarn section down toward you; it should be on the outside of the fabric. Pick up the sinker loops (also frequently called purl bumps) and hang them into the hooks of the corresponding needles. There are now two stitches in each needle and the fabric is double-layer on the machine.

folded hem 4

Turn the stitch dial up 2 numbers (6,in this instance.) Knit 1 row. Set stitch dial to 5.

Knit another 20 rows, clip the yarn, and remove the sample from the macxhine. Pull out the ravel cord to remove the waste yarn section.

picot hem 1
picot hem 2

Picot Hem

We will use 21 needles for this sample. We will also presume that the pattern tension should be 5.

Cast on 21 stitches with waste yarn. Knit 8 rows. Clip waste yarn and knit 1 row of ravel cord. Remove ravel cord from the yarn feeder.

Thread carriage with main yarn, and set the stitch dial 1 number tighter than main garment tension. (If the pattern says to use Tension 5, set the dial to 4.) Knit 8 rows.

Beginning with the second stitch from the right edge, transfer every other stitch to the adjacent needle on the left. Be sure all of the emptied needles are back in position B so they will knit on the next row. 

picot hem 3

Knit another 8 rows.

picot hem 4

Hold the cast on edge up to the needle bed. Fold the waste yarn section down toward you; it should be on the outside of the fabric. Pick up the sinker loops (also frequently called purl bumps) and hang them into the hooks of the corresponding needles. There are now two stitches in each needle and the fabric is double-layer on the machine.

picot hem 5

Turn the stitch dial up 2 numbers (6,in this instance.) Knit 1 row. Set the stitch dial to 5. Knit another 20 rows, clip the yarn, and remove the sample from the machine. Pull out the ravel cord to remove the waste yarn section.

2x1 needle setup

2×1 Mock Rib Hem

This is also called a double welt, especially in British patterns. It is basically a folded double-layer hem, with needles out of work. The completed hem somewhat resembles ribbing, but does not have the elasticity of true ribbing. It does work well to hold a sleeve or sweater bottom edge down, and prevent it from stretching out of shape.

To begin, bring 20 needles out to position B. Starting with needle 3, push every 3rd needle back to position A, out of work.

2x1 mock rib 2

Set the stitch dial to 3. Cast on with waste yarn and ravel cord. Knit 20 rows. Hold the cast on edge up to the needle bed. Fold the waste yarn section down toward you; it should be on the outside of the fabric. Pick up the sinker loops (also frequently called purl bumps) and hang them into the hooks of the appropriate needles. The long main color strand from the first row of main color should go onto the empty needle; the short loop should go on the next needle.

2x1 mock rib 3

Set the stitch dial to 5. Knit 20 rows. Clip the yarn and remove the sample from the machine. Pull out the ravel cord, and the waste yarn will fall away.

Insert a ruler or rod through the hem. Pull down firmly to bring the fabric together and set the hem stitches.


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This tutorial was copyrighted and uploaded to the original Clearwater Knits website in 1997. 
It was updated July 15, 2015