Kitchenering the Easy Way
Kitchener stitch is a way of joining two sets of live stitches. Useful for the toes of cuff-down socks, underarm stitches left on hold, and a variety of other knitting situations where you want a flexible join with no visible seam. I don’t recommend this for the shoulders of sweaters; it is so flexible the shoulder will stretch too much.
Start: have an equal number of stitches on two needles (or two ends of the same circular, or on a thread). Cut the working yarn with a long tail. Hold the wrong sides of the work together, one right side of the work facing you and the other facing away from you. Thread the yarn through a tapestry needle (TP).
Set-Up: Front needle – put the TP in the first st. as if to purl. pull thread through and leave the st. on the needle. Back needle – put the TP in the first st. as if to knit, pull thread through and leave the st. on the needle.
After the set-up all stitches are worked as follows:
put TP through st. on front as if to knit, slip st off; TP in next st. as if to purl, leave on needle
put TP through st. in back as if to purl, slip st off; TP in next st. as if to knit an leave on needle.
The card in my knitting tool kit reads as follows:
START: Front: P on. Back: K on.
CONTINUE: Front: K off, P on. Back: P off, K on.
Work loosely to match gauge of knitting; this can be tightened but loosening is difficult. When done correctly the resulting join looks just like a row of stockinette stitch. It can also be done in other patterns, including garter and rib, but those are for another day.