Buttonholes. They’re scary. They’re always front and center and come at a point where it feels like all your work could be spoiled by anything less than perfection. I admire a good after-thought buttonhole tucked discreetly into an I-cord border or a button loop that can be added later. I guess, my favorite one-row buttonhole could fall into the “after-thought” category – they’re perfect for knitting into an applied buttonhole band – but they also behave beautifully when “knitted-in”.
I didn’t invent this method…it comes up in patterns and books all the time. It has a nice, polished, bound look and works up much more easily that it appears. These buttonholes are knitted in the same direction as your knitting, so if you’re knitting them into the front of a garment that’s worked in a conventional way, your buttonholes will be horizontally oriented. If you’re working a button band that gets attached in one way or another to your garment front, your buttonhole will be vertical. When you’re working a horizontal buttonhole, remember that the button will likely slide to the outermost corner when there’s stress on the fabric. Be sure to plan their placement appropriately. You won’t have this problem with buttonholes that run vertically.
So here you go! The best one-row buttonhole ever:
Step 1: Usually, you’ll begin on a RS row. Work your way over to where you’ve planned the start of your buttonhole opening.
Step 2: Slip 1 with yarn in front (wyif), then move the yarn to the back.
Step 3: Next, you’ll be binding off stitches without using the working yarn. (The working yarn will remain at the far right of your work; you’ll need it here later.) To bind off, slip a stitch from the left needle to the right. Pass the right-hand stitch over. Repeat this until you’ve cast off the desired number of stitches.
Step 4: Slip the last remaining stitch from the right to the left needle. Turn the work.
Step 5: With yarn in back (wyib) and using the cable cast on method, cast on the same number of stitches as were bound off, plus 1. Turn.
Step 6: Wyib, slip a stitch from the left to the right needle, then pass the last cast on stitch over it. You’ve just gotten rid of the extra cast on stitch, and you’ll find your working yarn exactly where it needs to be in order to continue knitting.