Learn how to work the slip slip knit decrease, abbreviated as ssk. This is a very common decrease in knitting. By twisting the stitches before you knit them together, you can create a decrease that leans to the left.
Needle and Yarn
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Slip Slip Knit (ssk) Photo Tutorial
This decrease is very much like it’s corollary, the knit 2 together (k2tog). For both, you work a knit stitch through two stitches together as though they are one. The difference with the slip slip knit is that we first need to twist each of those two stitches around. This way, when the stitch is finished, it will lean to the left instead of to the right.
Identify the 2 stitches you would like to work together for the decrease.
With the yarn held at the back, slip both stitches knitwise, one at a time. Start by inserting your working needle into the first stitch as though you are going to knit it, and then slip it off the other needle.
Now repeat this action with the second stitch. This is the “slip slip” part of the ssk.
Insert your left (non-working) needle back into both stitches, in front of the working needle.
Now you are in a position to knit the two stitches together. Yarn over and pull through as you would for a normal knit stitch. Drop both stitches from the left (non-working) needle.
Slip Slip Knit (ssk) Video Tutorial
A Note for Lefties
I am 100% right handed and absolutely hopeless at knitting left handed. When making this tutorial, I was curious to learn if the left handed ssk leaned in the same direction. I asked around and researched other tutorials. Here’s what I learned.
If you work your ssk in the same way as a right handed person, by twisting 2 stitches first and then knitting them together, your decrease will lean to the right. However, it seems that knitters do not agree on how the terms should be applied to left handed knitting. Some left handed knitters define ssk as a left leaning increase and so they do it the same way as a right handed person would do a knit 2 together (k2tog).
This can all be very confusing, but no matter your definitions, the important thing is which way the stitch leans. Unless otherwise specified in the pattern, if it says ssk, you can assume the stitch is supposed to lean towards the left. Here’s a great tutorial from Just North of The Bend that explains this in more detail.
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