Magic Loop: Knitting Two at a Time

magic-loop-knitting-two-at-a-time Set of loops

For knitters the Magic Loop technique is a game changer! With just a single long circular needle, you can tackle projects with even the smallest circumferences in the round. Once you’ve mastered knitting one sleeve, sock, or hat at a time, why not challenge yourself to knit two at once?

What You’ll Need for Two-at-a-Time Knitting

To knit two pieces at a time using the Magic Loop technique, you’ll need a longer circular needle—40 inches is ideal—and two balls of yarn, one for each piece. While you could use a single center-pull ball of yarn and work with one strand from the outside and one from the inside, this often leads to tangling and confusion. Instead, we recommend winding one skein into two equally sized balls or using two separate skeins altogether.

Cast On

Start with the First Ball of Yarn:

Using the circular needles, cast on half the required stitches for the first piece. For a pattern needing 28 stitches per piece, cast on 14 stitches. Set this yarn aside; you will return to it later.


Switch to the Second Ball of Yarn:

Cast on the full number of stitches for the second piece, right next to the previously cast-on stitches. For our example, this means casting on 28 stitches.


Position the Stitches:

Slide all the cast-on stitches to the center of the needles. The half-set of stitches should be just to the right.

Divide the Stitches:

Find the midpoint of the full set of stitches. Ensuring the stitches aren’t twisted, fold the cord in half and pull it through so that half of these stitches are on the front cord and half on the back cord.

Continue pulling the cord through until the half-set of stitches is on the back needle.


Turn the Work:

With the needles pointing to the left, ensure the half-set of stitches is on the back needle, and the full set is divided equally between the front and back cords on the right.

Finish Casting On for the First Piece:

Using the working yarn from the initial half-set of stitches, cast on the remaining stitches for the first piece onto the front needle.

Final Positioning:

Turn the work so that the needles point to the right, with both working yarns coming from the stitches on the back needle. Now, all stitches for both pieces are cast on: half on the back needle and half on the front.

magic-loop-knitting-two-at-a-time 3-min

Join for Working in the Round

Check for Twists:

Ensure the stitches aren’t twisted. Hold the back stitches of the first piece and pull the back needle to the right, creating enough slack to turn the needle.

Knit the First Piece:

Knit across the stitches of the first piece on the front needle, joining in the round. After finishing these stitches, drop the working yarn.

Prepare the Second Piece:

Double-check that the stitches aren’t twisted. Use the working yarn from the back needles to knit across the stitches of the second piece on the front needle, joining this piece in the round.

Re-orient the Needles:

To reorient the needles for regular Magic Loop, pull the back cord until the stitches reach the back needle. Turn the work so the needles face the right. Pull the back needle out to create enough slack to work the stitches on the front needle.


Continue Knitting:

Knit across the stitches on the front needle using the working yarn for each piece. Reorient the work as needed to begin the next row.

After completing these steps, your work should resemble the image above with one full row complete. Repeat these steps to continue working in the round using the Magic Loop technique.


Bind Off

Bind Off the First Piece:

Bind off the stitches on the front needle of the first piece according to the pattern. Continue until only one stitch remains on the front needle, and the rest are still on the back needle. Drop the yarn and set it aside.

Bind Off the Second Piece:

Repeat the same process for the second piece. Then, reorient the work, so the back needle is positioned to continue binding off the remaining stitches.

Finish Binding Off:

Bind off all the remaining stitches from both pieces. You should be left with one loop from each piece. Cut both working yarns and pull the last loop through to secure.

You’re all set! Now you can knit two pieces at a time using the Magic Loop technique.

Read our other materials:

Rate article
Knit and knit
Add a comment