What is Knitting?

by Sajith Gupta

Knitting is a method by which yarn is manipulated to create a textile or fabric. It is used in many types of garments. Knitting may be done by hand or by machine. Knitting stitches loops of yarn in a row. 

There are usually many active stitches on the knitting needle at one time. Knitted fabric consists of a number of consecutive rows of connected loops that intermesh with the next and previous rows. As each row is formed, each newly created loop is pulled through one or more loops from the prior row and placed on the gaining needle so that the loops from the prior row can be pulled off the other needle without unraveling.


There are two major varieties of knitting:

Weft knitting 

Weft knitting is a knitted piece of fabric where the stitches run from left to right horizontally across the fabric. It is usually knitted with one piece of yarn, and can be made either by hand or using a knitting machine. In this method each weft thread is fed, more or less at right-angle to direction in which fabric is formed. Among all types of weft knit fabrics, the single jersey fabric is most popular.

warp knitting

Warp knitting is a family of knitting methods in which the yarn zigzags along the length of the fabric. Following adjacent columns, or wales of knitting rather than a single row or course. For comparison knitting across the width of the fabric is called weft knitting. Warp knitted fabric is knitted at a constant continuous width. The fabric is produced, however, by intermeshing loops in the knitting elements rather than interlacing warps and wefts as in a weaving machine.