Dropping a stitch simply means a stich has fallen off your needles at some point. This is one of the most common knitting mistakes for beginners and advanced knitters alike. When a stitch slips off your needle, don’t worry. Even if a few rows come undone, you can fix dropped knit stitches.
The most important thing to remember when you have dropped a stitch is this: do not pull on your work until your stitches are back in place. You will drop more stitches if you stretch the knitting. The stitches run and you will have a loose column of dropped stitches.
If you notice right away that you have dropped a stitch, you can slip it back on your left needle. Make sure to place the dropped stitch back on your needle correctly so it does not become twisted. Remember, an untwisted knit stitch should have the left leg behind the needle and the right leg in front of the needle.
When you do not see a dropped stitch immediately, you can fix it even if you have already worked a few rows. Use a crochet hook to bring the dropped stitch up the “ladder” of rows and back up to the needle.
Below you will find video and written guides to help you fix dropped stitches.
Video Guide: Common Knitting Mistakes, Fixing Dropped & Twisted Stitches
Written Guide: Fixing Dropped Stitches
Fix a Dropped Stitch, Step 1:
Continue working your pattern until you reach the column in which you have dropped a stitch.
Fix a Dropped Stitch, Step 2:
When working from the knitside, place the loop that was your dropped stitch in front of the “ladder” of undone stitches. Insert your crochet hook into the dropped stitch from the front to the back. Be sure your stitch is not twisted by confirming that the legs are not crossed.
Fix a Dropped Stitch, Step 3:
With the crochet hook, grab the strand directly above the twisted stitch.
Fix a Dropped Stitch, Step 4:
Pull the hook and the strand of yarn through the loop on the crochet hook; this will chain the strand through the dropped stitch.
Fix a Dropped Stitch, Step 5:
Continue pulling the strands of yarn directly through the loop on the crochet hook until no more strands remain in the “ladder” of loose stitches. Always check that each corrected stitch is not twisted before you move on to the next.
Fix a Dropped Stitch, Step 6:
Once you have reached the top of your work, ensure no loose strands remain above or behind the column you have just corrected.
Fix a Dropped Stitch, Step 7:
Move the loop from your crochet hook to the left-hand knitting needle. To prevent twisted stitches, be sure the right leg is in front of the needle and the left leg is behind the needle.
Fix a Dropped Stitch, Step 8:
Check that you have corrected the problem, then continue working on your pattern.
Learn to correct slipped stitches next. (Coming 3/27/2021)
Practice With My Knitting Patterns
In this guide I was making a Simple Face Scrubby. Knit along with me. This pattern is part of my Simple Washcloth Knitting Pattern Collection.
After you have learned to fix dropped knit stitches, you may want to know how to unravel a few rows to correct a problem. Or you can undo an entire knitting project to reuse the yarn. Either way, knitters call this “frogging,” and I will show you how in the next tutorial. (Available April 3, 2021.)