Not long ago my friend Sassy gave me a link to a knotless yarn joining technique called the Russian join. It look exciting to both of us – a way to join a new strand of yarn to the existing one with no knot to form a lump in the work.
I found a video demonstrating the technique, but my first few tries were failures (so were Sassy’s). I went back to the video and studied it closely, and finally I was able to make the join – but there were problems. First, it doesn’t work well at all with yarns that split easily, because your stitches will be too loose. Second, it doubles the thickness of the yarn on both sides of the join for a couple of inches.
Unsatisfied, I went back to using another joining technique I had learned from a video. I wanted Sassy to learn it, but absolutely couldn’t locate the video again.
So this is not my technique. I don’t know where it originated. But I offer these instructions for anyone looking for a clean and easy way to join two strands of yarn. It can be used to add a new skein or ball when you’re working with a single color, or to switch colors. My only note is that it’s not good for changing colors at a specific point in a pattern – but then, neither is the Russian join.
The pictures are Sassy’s as she followed along with my instructions via messaging. I asked her to use two different colors of yarn to make it very easy for me to explain the technique.
The Two-Knot Join
First, take two ends of yarn and overlap them about 4 inches, not touching each other. Now take the end of the red one, loop it around the black yarn, and tie a simple, tight knot in the red yarn around the black yarn. The knot doesn’t use the black yarn at all.
Now… pick up the yarn on each side BEYOND the knots and pull.
The two knots should slide together.Now make sure both knots are really tight, then cut off the tails of the two knots and you’ll have a very strong join. It makes a slight bump in your work but not enough to be a problem.
You can cut the tails off really close to the knots, just don’t cut into the knots. Yank on both ends to make sure it holds. Voilà!
Pictures by Sasuke Alexanderia Firemist