How to Avoid Holes at the Sides of a Short Row on a Knitting Machine

Written by susanne koenig
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How to Avoid Holes at the Sides of a Short Row on a Knitting Machine
Holes in your short row sock heel can be avoided by using a latch tool. (clew and knitting needles. image by Indigo Fish from

The knitting technique of short rowing is a time-honoured way of making a heel whether you are hand knitting or making a sock on a knitting machine. Short rows are quick and easy and do not require you to construct a gusset in order to make the heel fit into the rest of the sock. The problem with short rows is that when they are knit through and joined with the rest of the row, they can leave a small hole. The way around fixing the hole on a short row is the same as fixing a hole on a hand-knit sock.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Knitting machine
  • Sock yarn
  • Single-stitch transfer tool

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  1. 1

    Construct your short row heel according to your pattern's directions, being sure to wrap the yarn around the key on each key you decrease on a short row. This will wrap the yarn around the last stitch on every short row. Remember to extend your key for every short row you end.

  2. 2

    Push the short row keys that have been extended back to the working position.

  3. 3

    Take your latch tool. Carefully pick up the yarn wrapped around each short row end stitch and place it on the key. This will give you two full stitches on a key for every short row stitch you have made.

  4. 4

    Pass your carriage over the needle bed. Your short rows will now connect with the rest of your knitting. The holes will not appear in your knitting.

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