RT/LT – Right Twist and Left Twist
Twisted Stitch Patterns are a beautiful section in so many stitch dictionaries – but how exactly do you make perfectly matching left and right twists? I’ve come across multiple ways to do the LT and most of them are “easier” than what I show here, however they look noticeably different than the RT. If you want stitches that flawlessly mirror each other, follow the instructions below. I promise you will be able to do it just as quickly as any other method after a little practice!
The easiest way to learn these stitches is with the video tutorials, so let’s put those right up front:
A word about naming
I call these stitches “Twisted” following the convention of several resources I’ve seen. However many people reserve that term for a single stitch which is twisted on itself – such as when you knit through the back loop.
An alternative name I have come across is “Crossed Stitches”. Doubtless there are even more names out there, but as long as we each keep our personal definitions of ‘twisted’, ‘turned’, and ‘crossed’ stitches straight (oh the irony) then it’s all good.
RT – Right Twist
The RT creates an embossed stitch which slants up and to the right. It begins the same way as a normal right-leaning decrease (k2tog) but adds an extra step, which gives an extra stitch, so the count is not decreased.
1. Begin exactly as if you were doing a k2tog: insert the tip of the right needle into the first two stitches on the left needle together. Make a stitch and pull it through to the front – but don’t pull anything off the left needle yet!
2. The original two stitches should still be on the left needle. One new stitch is on the right needle.
3. Now take the tip of the right needle and do a normal knit stitch only into the first stitch.
4. The original two stitches are still on the left needle. There are two new stitches on the right needle. The process is finished and you can now pull everything off of the left needle.
LT – Left Twist
The LT creates an embossed stitch which slants up and to the left. It begins like a normal left-leaning decrease (ssk) but once again there is an extra step, which gives an extra stitch, so that the count is not decreased.
1. Begin as if you were doing a ssk: slip the first two stitches, one at a time, onto the right needle. Pass both of these back to the left needle so that they are now in a turned position (i.e. the left leg of the stitch is in front of the needle).
2. Knit through the back loop of the second stitch: take the tip of the right needle and pass it through the right leg and make a new stitch – but don’t pull anything off the left needle yet!
3. The original two stitches should still be on the left needle. One new stitch is on the right needle.
4. Knit both stitches on the left needle together through the back loops: pass the tip of the right needle through the right legs of both stitches and make one new stitch.
5. The original two stitches are still on the left needle. There are two new stitches on the right needle. The process is finished and you can now pull everything off of the left needle.
There you have it! Once you get the hang of these stitches a whole new category of patterns is suddenly open to you. Enjoy!
Thank you so much for the really REALLY clear, easy to follow tutorials for the KiYO blanket. RT and LT would’ve been a bear without your videos. I am on the Body/Body Stitch Pattern section now (specifically Row 5 and I don’t have a second hole to KiYO, LT, k1). I’m worried that something is off. It was looking amazing until Row 5. Can you do a video on this row? Specifically the part in the parenthesis, (k1, RT, KiYO, k1, KiYO, LT, k1). Wish you lived near, I’d bake you something and show up for help.
Thank you for the kind comment – I’d love to trade knitting help for fresh baked goods! You caught me at a perfect moment, I had yarn on hand and a quiet house so here is the video of Row 5:
Your tutorials are perfection, thank you so much Skye.
Wow! Much easier than I thought…thanks to your excellent video and written instructions. You’re a peach 🍑! Thank you. Cheers. 😊