How to knit the bobble stitch

In yesterday’s post, I talked about the Roberta Bobble Cardigan I chose to knit using FIBRA NATURA Kingston Tweed – Ochre and UNIVERSAL YARN Penna – Manuka while waiting for spring.

UNIVERSAL YARN Penna Alpaca lace yarn and FIBRA NATURA Kingston Tweed yarn

Knitting with two yarns held together

Knitting with two strands held together is not a complicated technique. You knit with two strands of yarn at the same time as if they were one single yarn.

Typically, this technique is used to achieve interesting colour combinations or to combine two fine yarns into a more substantial weight. In my case, the pattern recommends a heavier weight than any of the two yarns chosen but if I hold them together, they will get to about the same weight as asked for in the pattern.

I do not like to wind the two yarns together before knitting them as this might create different tension in the two yarns. I use the two balls but treat the two strands as one yarn. I need to pay attention when picking (or wrapping the yarn around the needle) to catch both strands. If knitting with two strands is new for you, there are some instructional videos and articles that can be helpful.

There are a few tips for knitting with more than one strand: one is to thread all the strands through a straw, it might help. You can also thread them through two or three stitch markers, this will help to keep the tension even in the two yarns.

The two yarns I’m using are fuzzy because of the alpaca content and they stick well together, no need to thread them through the straw!

Knitting the bobble stitch

Here are the instructions for making one bobble as described in the Roberta Bobble Cardigan:

MB (Make Bobble)

  1. Yarn over (yo)
  2. Knit into next st but do not remove st from needle.
  3. Yarn over (yo)
  4. Knit into the same st and do not remove st from the needle.
  5. Yarn over (yo).
  6. Knit into same st again and remove st from the needle (6 sts increased).
  7. Turn, p6.
  8. Turn, k6.
  9. Turn, (p2tog) 3 times.
  10. Turn, slip 1 as if to knit, k2tog, pass slipped stitch over k2tog and off the needle.

I must turn the work 4 times for each bobble, and I have a few bobbles in each row. The number of the bobbles increases as the work grows as the cardigan is worked top down. It will be easy to turn so many times in the beginning, when the rows are short, and the work is not too big, but after a while, this becomes slow and difficult.

Beginning of work in UNIVERSAL YARN Penna Lace Weight and FIBRA NATURA Kingston Tweed, Knitter’s Pride Mindful stitch markers and row counter.

One option is to work as described and turn my work four times for each bobble, another one is to knit the bobble stitches “backwards”, without turning the work. I opted for knitting backwards.

The bobbles require more time and yarn than I estimated, but that will just make the gray days pass faster. Join me tomorrow, when I share more knitting notes and my progress on knitting with FIBRA NATURA Kingston Tweed – Ochre and UNIVERSAL YARN Penna – Manuka and the bobble cardigan.

This is part 2 of 5 in this series

Go back to part 1: Knitting a bobble stitch cardi while waiting for spring

Go to part 3: Knitting the Roberta Bobble Cardigan | progress and project notes

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How the 3-needle bind-off is still the best for joining these seams

Do I need to color-match my self-striping yarn when starting a new ball?