Tinking a centered double decrease

If you haven’t heard the term, tinking is the process of undoing knitting, stitch by stitch (tink is knit spelled backwards). While I like the effect of various double decreases, I have to admit that they can be kind of a pain to tink, because of the way that the stitches are out of order. I recently noticed a trick for tinking my CDDs, and so I thought I’d share it just in case it’s useful.

Tinking a centered double decrease
Click to enlarge

This is more or less how a CDD looks when it’s sitting on the needle. Stitch 2 is front and center; stitch three is leaning to the left, just behind stitch 2; and stitch 1 is leaning to the right, all the way in back. I came up with this trick when I remembered how a CDD is worked: slip 2 stitches (numbers 2 and 3 in this picture) together as if to knit them together, knit the next stitch, and then pass the slipped stitches over the knit one. What if I were to pretend to tink stitch 1 (knit by itself) with the left needle, and then put the right needle through stitches 2 & 3 as if to purl them together, the way I do when I tink a k2tog? It worked, and here’s how:

Tinking a CDD, step 1
First take the left needle, and insert it in the front of stitch 1, as if to tink it if it were on the needle by itself. Then slide everything off the needle, but don’t pull out the stitch that holds the decrease together yet.

Tinking the slip 2 together part of a CDD
Next, insert the right needle through the backs of stitches 2 &3 as if to purl them together while the decrease stitch is still holding everything together. Then, and only then, pull out the stitch you’re tinking, here shown in grey. Finally, slip stitches 2&3 onto the left needle. The CDD has been tinked. Onward!


2 thoughts on “Tinking a centered double decrease”

  1. I read this and it sounds as though you’re slipping live stitches off the needles? Have I misunderstood?

  2. What’s shown at the beginning is a single stitch with the three decreased stitches hanging off of it. The goal is to unravel the single stitch while picking up the three stitches in their original orientation.

    The grey stitch is the stitch formed by the process of decreasing. The colored stitches underneath are the three stitches that I’m picking back up.

    Does that help?

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