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How to Russian Join Yarn in 7 Easy Steps

Hate weaving in ends? The Russian join is an excellent technique for attaching a new skein of yarn or for changing colors. Best of all, it creates a secure join, so you can keep crocheting or knitting without worrying about yarn ends! Here are instructions on how to complete the Russian join in 7 easy steps. I've used 2 different colors of yarn, but this is a great technique for attaching a new skein of the same color yarn, too!
How to Russian Join Yarn in 7 Easy Steps
1. Thread a blunt needle with one end of yarn.
2. Work the needle through the plies of your yarn for a few inches. Don't worry if this looks bunched up now.
3. Pull your working yarn through, leaving a small loop at the end. This is where the second piece of yarn will be attached.
4. Thread your needle with the second piece of yarn, then insert the needle into the small loop you created before.
5. Pull a few inches of yarn through the small loop.
6. Like you did before, work the needle through the plies of your second piece of yarn.
7. Give each strand a little tug to smooth out the bunching. You now have a secure join! Trim off any excess ends.

That's all there is to it! Depending on your yarn, you may notice that this joined area is slightly thicker than the rest of your yarn. I find this isn't very noticeable when I've worked my projects, but it's something to keep an eye on.

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  • Chellis

    This is a brilliant trick! Thank you!

  • Barbarastewart4396

    wow!  Great idea!  Can't wait to try this....  thanks!

  • annie_galle

    I learned to do this as a child in Copenhagen Denmark.It works well.Thank you for reminding knitters to do this ,works for any hand project.

  • Lisa Tarpley2087

    Thank you so much!!

  • Grannynickel

    I cannot believe this is so easy! No more knots!!!

  • Jen

    I have heard of this before, and seen pictures of the end result, but you explained very well how to do it, and do it easily.  Thank you so much!

  • Cristylynne

    Wish I'd known about this years ago!  Now, when you're done, you're really done!

  • Alicia

    Awesome! Thanks for sharing.

  • Wenkip

    Love it. Will save me alot of time and effort when I'm using up ends of the balls. Thanks for sharing it with us.

  • rita castillo

    Fantastic, thank you so so much

  • Megatia

    wow... could've used this info a while back in current project!! not quite 'getting' ending a color @ the end of a row & starting a new color when striping, tho... maybe it will come when I try this.

  • Grr114

    has anybody tried this with lace weight?

  • Angela Moore

    Wow, how clever, I'm going to have to tell my friends in my local Project Linus group.

  • Poagep

    awesome no more weaving in or knots woohoo

  • Voonsuanngo

    very clever.  will use this method from now on!!!!

  • Julesbois

    Oh my this looks great!  Yes I hate weaving ends!!! I just tried it and I will do this all the time from now on...

  • deb

    i'm knitting with some very thin yarn that does not look right with woven in ends; this should be great!

  • mn_me

    this will come in very handy on an afghan i have in the works... thanks for the tip.

  • Jhurst904

    so easy to understand and a much better way to join new yarn to the old.  Thank you

  • Barbara

    I love this idea.  Wish I knew this along time ago.

  • Rose_tong2000

    Wow, I love this!!!!!

  • Bartha

    This is amazing:-))) Thanks!!

  • Alia

    many thanks for posting this. i thought i was doomed to a long life of weaving in ends and trying to tuck in knots.
    and Spasibo (sp?)  to the Russian who developed this wonderful technique!

  • roxulikeababy

    Can't wait to try it! This may be the most helpful tip I've gotten since I started knitting!

  • Kirsty

    Ditto to everyone! This is great! I have to go start a new project now so I can try it...

  • Kathy

    How do you make the color change occur at the right place?

  • Mkallsnick

    This sounds like a must try idea but can you better explain step 3? How and where do you pull the working yarn through in order to create that loop?
    Thanks :)

  • Nina

    What a great way to join - Thanks for sharing!

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  • Rose

    I found this technique a few years ago and absolutely love it.  If there's one thing I hate about knitting and crocheting, it's having to weave in ends and this pretty much eliminates that.  Try it; you will definitely like it.

  • karen

    I have been trying to do this for 30 minutes and all my yarn got was tangled, I don't get it.

  • MycoCreations OrganicCreations

    FanTabUlous!!! Thanks for sharing :)

  • Susan Pauley

    Slick. This works great.

  • thewellhunt

    I only do step 1 & 2.  In step 2 I am weaving in the new colour.  I have being joining this way for many years and have never had any trouble with the yarns separating.

  • Airbrusher

    does this also work with cotton yarn?

  • Susan

    I've been knitting for nearly 60 yrs.  Years ago, people didn't bother "naming" the when I let you know that my Russian neighbor taught me to join yarn in a similar fashion, I thought that would be "Russian join"....anyway, it's a little simple, in 2+ ply or a loose single ply, you just thread the new yarn into the ply of the old yarn, and subsequently the old yarn end into the new yarn.  No twisting.  No thick spots.  Easy peasy.  Must be a very old technique since 60 years ago the neighbor was 70+. Try it.

  • queenmom

    I love this.  I wish I had known about it soon.  Thanks for the tip.

  • Christina

    I seriously wish that I'd have learned this method so many years, so VERY many skeins of yarn! ago. Thank you for "teaching" us! I'll def have to teach it to all my friends!

  • Karen

    Before my friends 92 year old mother died she taught me how to weave the yarn ends together like this...I've been doing it that way ever since...may she rest in peace with her needles in her hands!!!

  • Virginia

    I can't wait to try this soon, especially with dishcloths.  One suggestion would be to put the instructions right underneath each picture instead of all of them being way down at the bottom where one has to keep scrolling up and down to read each instruction for each picture. But thank you for posting this.  It was extremely helpful.

  • Ambee1156

    I just learned this technique last month and loved it immediately. I've already used it in many projects with no noticeable yarns sticking out. Old or new technique - I'm glad that I know how to use it now.

  • Tinavh_1436

    My problem was that my ends came out of where I pulled them thru when I tried to work it. Anyone have that problem?

  • Erby404

    this is so welcome. what an exceptional idea. thank you

  • Jlujan

    I do it a slightly different way.  I take the new thread on a tapestry needle and go back about three to four inches.  I then weave the new color through the old backward about an inch and a half.  I then take that color off and put the old color on the needle and go forward through the new yarn about an inch and a half.  I take that off the needle and pull from oth ends to see if there is enough tension to hold them.  THen I snip off any remaining ends.

  • Dinerwillyb

    i've used this technique for several years. i hated working a blunt needle thru the yarns, so i took a large eyed steel needle to a saw/grinding shop and had them grind me a sharp tip on my needle.

  • Julesbois

    I just love this!  I used it again this time with a chunky yarn and worked beautifully. I wish I learned this before all the afghans I made and was left with so many ends to weave in...

  • Megan Elberty

    I love this technique! It is similar to tying a quick knot after threading a needle.  As one who loves working with multiple colors but hates working in those ends, I am so excited to try this out. Thanks.

  • Geraldine

    love it, thank you so much, will bookmark this page.

  • Mizufusion

    This is brilliant! Now I have motivation to work on my nalbinding project again. That thin is nothing but loose ends!

  • Baskar

    Love the technique! First the instructions looked hard but as i followed step by step, it dawned on me... Sad that I didn't know this when i was doing granny squares but Glad that i know it now. Thanks lion brand. A simple suggestion... To go thru part of the fibres of the yarn atleast 7-8 times so the end is completely hidden.

  • Dané Samuel

    thank GOD! i'm reaching the end of my skein for an spiral afgahn. didnt know how to join the next skein on. between the pictures and the step by step instructions i wont mess up!

  • Celia

    Help - no matter what I do, the ends keep poking back out of the fabric once I've worked over the joined areas. I trim the ends sticking out, and then the new ends start poking out almost instantly. Cannot figure out how to keep them in the join. :-(

  • Patricia_forster

    This is amazing. I have been knitting and crocheting for 40 years and have never seen this. THANK YOU.

  • Sarah Curtis

    Cant wait to try this ... I have also been knitting for about 60 years and it is new to me. my Mother used to say .. "You learn something new every day"   ;-)   Love the nail colour but thats probibly because I am IRISH   ;-)

  • Kroman

    Awesome! I am defiantly trying this on my next project!

  • Suanna

    FANTASTIC!!!!  I will be using this from now on!!!  I knit and crochet los, since I have 9 grands and 1 great grandchild!  LOVE it.  Thanks

  • Nosnah

    Been doing this for years thinking I made this up. Now I find out the Russians beat me to it. Oh well, it's still a clever way to join yarns. When I'm concerned that the join thickness will show I cut each ply of the yarn just a little shorter so it becomes more gradual. (Make sure that you cut too close to the join.)

  • Wenchnhalflock

    I love this! I just tried it with kitchen cotton today and it worked perfectly. Thank you so much!

  • Grand30

    Can't wait to try it out. Hope I'm not too silly to follow your instructions. Can't wait to show the other crafters in my group as all of us hate joining and find it really tiresome when most wool we buy already have a huge knot in it (even the best yarn you can buy have knots instead of being free of them). All these ideas help to make our work look more professional even if we are intermediate. I'm a beginner in knitting so this will be a real help there.

  • Siouxsiesue

    Fantastic! I've just tried out this out and it's so easy, I can think of so many projects where I could have used this in the past. Thank you!

  • Ximena Porras

    Great, it´s the solution to alpaca wool, cause it´s very slide

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  • Mona Lisa

    I love this! No more ends and no more knots. Very easy to understand.

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  • pepi

    never thought this would work!!!!! but it did, superrrr

  • Guest

    I love this way of joining yarn will be using it on all my projects!

  • Mariasha

    Thanks for the incredibly easy-to-follow directions! This is my new favourite way to join yarn ends!

  • Grammielocw

    Oh, thank you so much for this share. No more knots or hanging ends.

  • Tamra Robertson

    Thank you for such a clever way to join now yarn; can't wait to try it.

  • Pat

    Wonderful... can't wait to try this.

  • calluntome

    I have a question .................. If I'm going to change colors, I want it to change at a certain point, not randomly. With this method, how do you guarantee the point at which to do this in order for the color change to fall right where you want it?

  • TAMom

    my gosh .. genius idea, love it!

  • Chris

    Thank you very much I will surely use this.

  • Meg

    Great idea thanks

  • rin

    I don't get ( :

  • andvand

    I wish I knew this 50 years ago! Oh well, from here on in my knitting will look much more professional! Thank you!

  • Rae

    this is really easy once you do it a few times and also makes quite a difference in your finished project.

  • Monique E.

    So cool...Tks for this post!

  • Katieann179

    What a great way to 'tie on' new skeins! I'll certainly be using it from now on. Thanks for the info.

  • Wendy L. Oldham

    Thank you for this tip. I just finished two baby afghans with yarn I don't think this would work with as they didn't have a ply. But, I'm going to use this with all future projects I use ply yarn.

  • Debra Peters

    I did it with "speed cro-sheen" ! very cool - no more knots in my work-- thank you, thank you!!

  • Heather McLeland-Wieser

    Looks very cool. Can't wait to try it. I've got 3 project all nearly ready for a new yarn.

  • Sara

    I love this little trick! It's so much better than knotting them together.

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  • JeanG

    This is very cool. Can't wait to try it!

  • Evelyn Mayfield

    This is 75, I have been crocheting for what seems like centuries and I cannot believe I never learned to do this. Forgot knots; forget crocheting over loose ends; forget weaving zillions of ends at the end of a project. Hands down, best tip ever. I just blogged about this tonight, and pinned it, also...thank you! Here's the link...

  • MizDoreen

    I have been using this technique for years, it is so simple. You can even use it when changing colors in stead of crocheting over your ends. It keeps them from popping out later.

  • Yvette Marie Arauz Thomas

    Thank you for sharing this! I will have to give this a try.

  • Dixie's Hat Rack

    OH My Goodness....These tips are awesome...Thank you so very much......Many kudos to you!! :)

  • Linnea McCormack

    This is a great photo/written tutorial. Thanks so much!

  • Tracy

    How does this hold up on an item that gets machine washed?

  • rhonda

    just lovely . Thank you.

  • Atiqur Sumon

    Great tips.

  • lifesaver1

    When we were living in Germany a German neighbor taught me a similar technique - which BTW works best when attaching similar or the same colors as far as how the finished item looks.

  • Goddessence

    I am not getting Step 2. Its not clear. Do I pierce the plies? Or just wind the yarn round the needle?
    Im sure its a great method, I just do not get it from the instruction