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How To Join In the Round & Avoid These Knitting Mistakes

Joining in the round is essential if you want to start circular knitting. It joins one end of your cast-on stitches to the other end of stitches, forming a circle.

If done correctly, the join isn’t noticeable once you weave in the tail end into the inside of the work. Here’s how to join for working in the round.

Stitches on a circular needle ready to be joined in the round

Suppose you don’t know how you’re in good company. Why learn from hard-to-find books when you can read my articles?

Get ready to start knitting and advance your knitting skills.

Table Of Contents

What Does Join Knitting In The Round Mean?

Once you finish casting on your required stitches onto your circular needles, you need a way to join the stitches so you can knit around and around.

There are a few ways to join the round.

YouTube video

How To Join Knitting In The Round

Make sure none of the stitches are twisted! This is a very important step.

How do you check? By ensuring the cast on ridge is around the inside. If part of it isn’t, untwist it.

You don’t want the problem of the stitches in your projects facing in the wrong direction. This simple check makes all the difference.

All the cast on stitches are untwisted. The cast on edge all faces inwards.

1 – Preparing To Join In The Round

  • Ensure the needle tip with the working yarn is on the right of the right needle
  • (Left if you are left-handed)
  • Push the stitches up towards the needle tips
  • As you knit around, your stitches gather in a particular spot
  • Move them around evenly to your left-hand needle to make it to knit them
  • Mark the end using a stitch marker, this is just after your last cast on stitch.

Step 2 – Joining In The Round

Right-Handed Instructions

  • Do 1 knit stitch (This is knitting the first cast on stitch)
  • Pull the working yarn firmly
  • You’ve now joined the round
  • Continue on knitting the pattern with the next row
  • The last stitch is just before the marker.
  • Knit the last stitch
  • Slip the marker over to the right-hand needle (this tells you it is the beginning of the round.
  • Continue knitting

Left-Handed Instructions

  • Knit 1
  • Pull the working yarn quite tight
  • The round is now joined!
  • Continue your pattern.
  • When you get to the end, where your stitch marker is
  • slip the marker over to the right-hand needle
  • Continue knitting

How To Knit The Invisible Join In The Round

There are multiple ways to join in the round, and this is a more invisible method. Instead of knitting the first stitch like the previous process, add an extra stitch for joining in the round.

Circular needles with green yarn cast on.

Step 1 – Cast On

  • Make a slip knot
  • Cast on the required stitches in your usual way
  • (Doesn’t matter how you do your cast ons)
  • Cast on one extra stitch
  • Work with the yarn behind the needle tips if you’re knitting
  • In front of the needles if you’re purling

Step 2 – Slip It!

Slipping the first cast on stitch on the left hand needle purlwise over to the right hand needle

Right-handed

  • Hold the needle with the working yarn in your right hand
  • Insert your right needle into the first cast on stitch on the left needle
  • Take it right to left
  • Slip the stitch onto your right needle.
Slipped stitch on the right hand needle

Left-handed

  • Hold the needle with the working yarn in your left hand
  • Insert your left needle into the first stitch on the right needle left to right
  • Slip the stitch onto your left needle

Step 3 – “Bind Off

Bringing the last cast on stitch sitting on the right hand needle over the stitch slipped over to the right hand needle, Thus one stitch is decreased.

Right-handed

  • Insert the left needle from left to right into the stitch with the working yarn attached. (The extra stitch)
  • Bring the stitch over the slipped stitch on the right needle and off

Left-handed

  • Insert the right needle from right to left into the stitch with the working yarn attached
  • Bring the stitch over the slipped stitch on the left needle and off.

Step 4 – Slip It Back

Slip the stitch back over to the left hand needle ready to be worked.
  • Right-handed: Insert the left needle from left to right into the first stitch on the right needle. Slip it over to the left needle.
  • Left-handed: Insert the right needle from right to left into the first stitch on the left needle. Slip it over to the right needle.
  • Tighten the working yarn and the yarn tail end until there are no loopy stitches between the knitting needles.
  • I knit that stitch holding the tail and the working yarn together and then pull tight. It does make a thicker stitch but it is not noticeable once you continue with the pattern.
  • Your round is now joined.
Using the working yarn and the tail yarn together, knit the stitch


I place a marker at the beginning of the round and then work that stitch I’d slipped back to the left hand needle.

Working the first stitch of the round.

The worked stitch looks thicker as it has been worked with the tail and working yarn. This is then pulled tight to close the join gap.

You can see the first stitch is thicker having been worked with the tail and the working yarn. For every other stitch continue just with the working yarn.

Here’s some information in a video tutorial by Knitiversity.

YouTube video

How To Knit In The Round With Circular Needles

Knitting in the round is fun and a great skill to have. Make hats, gloves, socks, and all sorts using circular needles.

For more on knitting in the round, read my complete guide. For info on types of circulars, see here.

Q&A

How Do You Join Knitting In The Round Without A Gap?

1 – Use A DPN

Use a double-pointed needle to close the pesky gap with joining in the round.

  • Slip the first of your right needle onto the double point needle
  • Do the same for the first stitch on the left needle
  • Push the stitches on the double-pointed needle together

Step 2 – Flip It!

  • Turn the double-pointed needle around
  • The stitch on the left is on the right
  • The stitch on the right is on the left

Step 3 A Gap-Free Join

  • Slip the left stitch onto the left needle
  • Slip the right stitch onto the right needle
  • The round is now joined and is 100% gapless
  • Tighten those ends! This technique makes a nice, neat join.

Note: As you knit more rounds, you may notice a small notch between the first and last stitches on the bottom. Weave the tail in.

How Do You Join In The Round On Double Pointed Needles?

Step 1 – Cast On And Divide

  • Cast on all of your stitches on one DPN
  • Divide them between the number of knitting needles you want to use

Step 2 – Join In The Round

Right-handed

  • Hold the needle with the working yarn on the right
  • The needle to the left of the needle with the working yarn is where you join
  • Pull both needles down, so the stitches are close to the tips
  • Slip the stitch on the left needle purlwise onto the right needle with the right needle.
  • Insert the left needle into the second stitch on the right needle
  • Lift it over the slipped stitch, but keep it on your left needle

Left-handed

  • Hold the needle with the working yarn on the left
  • The needle to the right of the needle with the working yarn is where you join
  • Pull both needles down, so the stitches are close to the tips.
  • Slip the stitch on the right needle purlwise onto the left needle with the left needle
  • Insert the right needle into the second stitch on the left needle
  • Lift it over the slipped stitch, and keep it on your right needle.

Pull the working yarn and the tail end to make the join neater.

How Do I Join The Round In The Magic Loop?

This method is an invisible join for magic loop.

Step 1 – Cast On And Set Up The Magic Loop

  • Cast on the number of stitches for your project onto your circular needles.
  • (Use any of the methods)
  • Cast on one extra stitch.
  • Push the stitches down to the middle of the cord
  • Find the halfway mark
  • Add 1
  • Pinch the cord and pull it out
  • Slide both sides up to the needle tips

Example: You need 20 stitches on each needle. So cast on 40 and add an extra stitch, making 41. Count 40 stitches, add one and pinch the cord out.

Check the join and ensure it’s not twisted.

Step 2 – Join The Magic Loop

  • The needle with the working yarn is needle 2 (the one closest to you, with the needle tips pointing to the left)
  • The other is needle one
  • Take the first stitch on the back needle (needle 1) onto needle 2 (closest to you)
  • Use your fingers or an extra needle to do this.
  • Take the first stitch on needle two (not the one you just moved) over the stitch you just moved from needle one
  • Move it over and off. You made a decrease.
  • You added an extra stitch so you don’t lose your original stitch count
  • Your magic loop is joined
  • You then turn your needles around so the working yarn is on the back needle. Needle tips are pointing to the right. Then you are ready to knit!

Here’s a video tutorial by Emily from Blue Mouse Knits.

YouTube video

How To Join In The Round After Knitting Flat

Knit flat, transfer to double points, and knit in the round. The only inconvenience is seaming the split edge after finishing your project.

It works best for small things, like socks, a hat, or baby items.

Here’s a video explaining how.

YouTube video

How Do You Add A New Ball Of Yarn When Knitting In The Round?

The last stitch of the old ball and the first stitch of the new ball is knit as one. Together, knit a stitch and drop the old ball. This prevents holes.

Here’s a great tutorial by B.Hooked.

YouTube video

I hope you’re content with your new knowledge and you knit a successful join. Happy circular knitting! There are many patterns to choose from.

Have a question, fellow knitter? Tell me in the comments.

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Jodie Morgan From Knit Like Granny

About Jodie Morgan

Hi. I’m Jodie Morgan, creator of Knit Like Granny. I started this site to show 1,000,000 people the joys of knitting & highlight alternatives to fast fashion. Please say hello!

Jodie Morgan Profile Pic

About Jodie Morgan

Hi. I’m Jodie Morgan, creator of Knit Like Granny. I started this site to show 1,000,000 people the joys of knitting & highlight alternatives to fast fashion. Please say hello!

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