Duplicate stitch is an embroidery technique where a contrast color yarn is worked on top of the knitted piece by following the knitted stitch pattern. Typically, a yarn of the same weight is used when performing duplicate stitch but this is not always the case. Depending on the desired effect, the knitter may choose a yarn of a lighter weight so that the original stitch shows through or a chunkier yarn so that the embroidery stands out from the fabric. Duplicate stitch may also be used as a finishing technique to weave in tail ends.
When used for embroidery, duplicate stitch may produce a similar effect as Intarsia. However, because you are adding an additional layer to the knitted piece, it may affect the overall drape of the knit. When performed in small areas, duplicate stitch typically produces minimal impact to the overall drape of a piece. But, it’s important to keep this in mind when choosing to perform duplicate stitch over another technique.
Remember, in Stockinette stitch, one stitch forms the “V” shape. It’s important that you know how to identify a stitch before using this technique.
Working from right to left, we are going to follow the “V” of each stitch:
1. Using a tapestry needle and contrast color yarn, bring the needle through the upside down “V” that is next to the stitch you are going to work from right to left.
2. Now go through the top right point of the “V” and through to the left side of the stitch.
3. Then, go back through the next upside down “V”.
4. Repeat steps.
You can also work this stitch from left to right. Just reverse the direction:
1. Using a tapestry needle and contrast color yarn, bring the needle through the upside down “V” that is next to the stitch you are going to work from left to right.
2. Now go through the top left point of the “V” and through to the right side of the stitch.
3. Then, go back through the bottom of the “V”.
4. Repeat steps.