In most cases, the regular way to bind off stitches works just fine. But if you want to add a special touch to the open edges of your project, you need to use a special way of closing stitches. I-cord bind off is one of those ways.
It turns plain edges of blankets, cowls, top-down hats and toe-up socks into a sophisticated decoration, and adds an elegant detail to cuffs and bottoms of top-down sweaters. A big bonus of this bind off is that it is fully reversible and looks great with any stitch pattern.
Even though the i-cord bind off looks quite fancy, it is not difficult to make.
Here’s how it works step by step.
STEP 1. At the beginning of a right-side row, cast on 3 to 5 stitches using knitted or cable cast on methods.
STEP 2. Knit stitches one by one until you get to the last stitch of the i-cord.
STEP 3. Knit the last stitch of the i-cord together with one stitch of the main fabric through the back loop.
STEP 4. Slip the resulting stitches purlwise to the left needle.
Repeat steps 2 – 4 until you bind off all stitches of the main fabric, and there are only the stitches of the i-cord left on the right needle.
Cut the yarn and thread the yarn tail into a wool needle. Run the wool needle through the remaining stitches and secure the yarn. Hide the yarn tail inside the i-cord.
Watch these steps in a video tutorial:
Once all stitches are bound off, take a moment to enjoy the look of a beautiful edge you’ve just formed.
If you’d like to decorate your project with matching cast on and bind off edges, use the i-cord cast on method to form an identical edge when you cast on stitches.
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If you enjoyed this tutorial,
here’s something else you might find helpful:
“Matching Cast Ons and Bind Offs” Book
Discover six pairs of cast on and bind off methods that form identical edges on projects worked flat and in the round.
“Neat Side Edges” Book
Learn twelve ways to make side edges of a knitted project nice and tidy. Plus, ways to fix side edges, and a way to improve edges of finished projects.
Dealing with Unfinished Projects
Dictionary of Knitting Symbols and Abbreviations – E-Book
Eastern (Russian) Knitting Simplified
How to Shape Neckline Without Binding Off Stitches – E-Book