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Double knitting creates a reversible, two- layer, double-thick fabric. You work both sides of the fabric at once, with stitches from each side of the fabric alternating on the needles. When working a double knit fabric, you will first work a stitch from the side of the fabric facing you and then you will work a matching stitch from the opposite side of the fabric.
Double knitting can come in very handy when you would like to create a thick fabric: a cold-weather hat, a pot holder, a coat. It was the perfect technique for our crescent hobo purse - we wanted a thick, non-felted purse that does not require lining. It is also a great technique when you would like freedom in doing color work with 2 colors: double knitting will allow you to do vertical stripes and any other kind of two-tone fabric without requiring multiple bobbins of yarn, stranding or similar techniques required for complex 2-color work when working in standard knitting.
Many techniques that you use in standard knitting can be used in double-knitting if you apply a little ingenuity. However, you really need to be comfortable with doing a particular technique in standard knitting before translating it for use with double knitting.