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Steeks may not be for the faint of heart, but nor should knitters be intimidated by them! We aim here to make steeks approachable… and even fun!

In knitting, “steek” is an old Scottish word that refers to a specific group of extra stitches that are for future cutting. A steek is often used to create an opening (like the front of a cardigan or an armhole) or a place to attach another piece (such as a sleeve). Steeks are primarily used in circularly knit garments and are closely associated with stranded colorwork, like Fair Isle. Steeking makes it possible to create the colorwork in the round (much easier than flat!) and to then transform the tube into a vest, cardigan or Henley. And even if you’re not working elaborate color work but love to avoid purling, steeks may be your new best friend!

Today, steek commonly refers to the entire multistep process, including preparing, cutting, and finishing. There are lots of ways to do all this, and below, we demonstrate our favorite technique. We especially like it because it only involves knitting, without the use of sewing machines or crochet hooks! And so, here’s a Steek with Knit Facing…