Garter Gaiter

We all know about late night holiday knitting and 42-inch scarves, stopped short to finish in time for giving! That's why every year we come up with the perfect quick knit, one that takes less than an afternoon to make but that you can give with pride.

This Garter Gaiter is perhaps our best inspiration so far! Knit out of Purl Soho's Super Soft Merino, it is delectably cozy and totally gorgeous, but even more to the point, it is a generous chunky weight that knits up here at a speedy 2 1/2 stitches to the inch!

Our Garter Gaiter features a beautiful play of color and a striking woven texture, all of which is really just the simple trick of single round stripes of garter stitch. We love it in crisp and festive candy cane colors, but can happily imagine any of our Super Soft Merino brights paired up with Heirloom White. Or for a dark and mysterious version, we love the idea of an interplay between Timeless Navy and Soft Black!

Lots of people left on your list? Check out more of our very quick, but very special, knitted gifts: our Bandana Cowl, Eleventh Hour Scarf, Fun Kid's Hat, Hats for Everyone, and Infant Mittens. A little something for everyone!



2 1/2 stitches = 1 inch in garter stitch


24 inches in circumference by 12 inches tall


With color A, cast on 60 stitches.

Place a marker and join for working in the round, being careful not to twist the stitches.

Round 1: With color A, knit.

Round 2: With color B, purl.

Repeat Rounds 1 and 2 until the piece measures 11 3/4-inches from the cast on edge.

Repeat Round 1.

With color A, bind off knit-wise.

Weave in your ends, and ta da, you've finished the Garter Gaiter!

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57 Responses to Garter Gaiter

  1. purl bee says:

    Hi Sylvie-

    We would suggest that you use a measuring tape to figure out how big around you'd like the gaiter to be and then multiply that number by 2.5, which is how many stitches you will be getting per inch. As an example, let's say you want it to have a 20-inch circumference. 20 X 2.5 (stitches per inch)= 30 stitches to cast on.

    Good luck with it and thanks for your question!


  2. Jana says:

    Can someone help me figure out why I lose my join on the first purl round? I cast on, join, knit one round, begin to purl, get all the way around and find my join was never made? What am I missing?

    • Whitney from the Purl Bee says:

      Hi Jana,

      When you join, do you have the working yarn coming from the right needle and you’re making the joining stitch into the first stitch on the left needle? Can you see at that point that the end of your cast on is connected to the beginning of your cast on?

      If that step is correct, you should be okay. Please let us know if you feel like you’re doing it right, but it’s still not working for you… We’ll try to get to the bottom of it!

      Thanks for question!

  3. Jana says:

    I am having a similar issue with the bind off seeming uneven. I am following the pattern, knitting last row with color A and binding off knitwise with color A. The row ends up looking uneven. It does not connect the final round seamlessly. How is this remedied?

    • Whitney from the Purl Bee says:

      Hi Jana,

      The edge may look uneven at this point because when you work in the round you’re actually working in a spiral (as opposed to evenly stacked rounds), so it’s true that the end of the round is a little higher than the beginning of the round. This is easily fixed when you weave in the tail. If you sew the gap closed when you weave it in, that usually remedies the problem.

      If I’ve misunderstood the situation, please let me know and thank you for your question!


  4. Tara says:

    Hello again,
    I’m pretty new to knitting and have made two of these which I adore. I want to make a couple more for Christmas presents, but, before I do, I was wondering if you could help me iron out a problem I’ve been having, i.e. my seam is a bit of a mess! I carry the seam on the inside and pull the yarn I’m not using back behind the yarn I’m about to use when switching between colours, but my seam is very hit and miss. For some reason I get a lovely neat line every now and again where you can’t even spot the seam, but other lines look really botched. Can you think why this might be happening?? I know it’s hard to say without seeing it (!), but just thought I’d ask in case anything came to mind.

    • Molly from the Purl Bee says:

      Hi Tara-

      I’m sorry to hear you’re having this problem! Would you mind sending me a picture of what’s going on so we can’t try to get to the bottom of it? Molly AT purlsoho DOT com.



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