How to knit pleats – the easy way

I was recently shopping for clothes and stumbled across some wonderful pleated skirts and dresses made out of knitted fabric.

This got me thinking – how do you knit pleats?

Having searched the internet, it seemed that knitting pleats is really rather difficult (or for me, at least).

Then, because the search for how to knit pleats continued for quite a while, I came across a really simple way to create a beautiful knit pleated fabric.

Read on to find out how to knit pleats the really easy way.

How to knit pleats – what Google said.

Ok so I before I found an easy way to knit pleats, here are some of the websites that I stumbled across. You may find them interesting to look at – indeed you may well prefer these methods for knitting pleats.

  • How knit pleats and tucks – this article is on the gathered.com website. It shows how to knit pleats using dpn needles, and to me looks a little bit like cabling – stitches in front, stitches behind. Well worth a look if you would like to learn a new pleat knitting skill.
  • How to knit pleats by Knit and Crochet Saturday is another interesting tutorial for anyone who would like to learn how to knit pleats. This article also contains some interesting ideas for incorporating pleats into your knitting.
  • If video tutorials are more your thing, Drops design has a good one on the topic of how to knit a pleat. You can find the video by following this link.

The easy way to knit pleats

Ok, so here is our easy way to knit pleats. You could use this pleated knitted stitch to knit pleated skirts, cuffs, scarves, or anything else where you would like to see a pleated detail in your garment.

This easy pleats knitting pattern stitch is made only from knit and purl stitches. It could perhaps be called a ‘faux pleats’ stitch.

The pleat effect is beautifully subtle – the pleats are more noticeable with finer wool and thinner needles.

To knit this stitch pattern, you will need to cast on in multiples of 8 + 7 stitches.

The pleats shown in my piece of knitting were made in aran thickness yarn, with 23 stitches being cast on.

The pleats knitting stitch is made from a two row repeat as follows:

  • Row 1 (wrong side): k3, *p1, k7, repeat from * to last 4 stitches, p1, k3.
  • Row 2 (right side): *k7, p1, repeat from * to last 7 stitches, k7.

Cast off with the right side facing, in the pleats stitch pattern.

This pattern could be used to knit really lovely pleated effect scarves – simply choose your yarn thickness and work out how many stitches you would need to achieve your desired width. 23 stitches, as shown in the photos, would be sufficient to create a wonderful, subtly pleated scarf in chunky wool – I would use 7 or 8mm needles to give a smashing drape to your knitted garment.

And that’s it – a very simple way to knit pleats.

Coming soon – knitting patterns that incorporate pleats.

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