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The World of Illusion Knitting

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Many people assume that to make a bigger circle you need to add more and more extra stitches as the size increases. This is not the case. You add the same number of stitches on every round regardless of how big the round is.

This idea has a lot in common with the ‘Rope around the world’ problem.

Scroll down for more information about

Run Rings Round



Doing the Rounds
Money Spinner


Swirl Without End

Wheels Within Wheels


Wind Up


Only one yarn is used at a time.

The plain circles are knitted back and forth on circular needles. The others are knitted sideways with only a few stitches on the needle at a time.


A ‘colour-changing’ yarn is required plus one or more solid colours to tone with it. The version shown has irregular colour changes. Other yarns will create different effects.

DK yarn was used but the design works for any type yarn. The afghan can be made to any size you want.

The rings on this version are of varying widths.

Other effects can be achieved by using yarns with different colour changes and/or making the rings in equal widths.

It seems counter-intuitive that the same small number of stitches should be added on every round of knitting to make the circle keep growing and to lie flat but that is exactly what happens.

Rope around the world problem


Imagine a piece of string wrapped around the Earth's equator, which is a distance of about 40,000 km. How much string would you need to add to make it sit 15 cm above the surface?


Slightly less than one  1 metre.

It is all to do with proportion. The circumference of a circle is always just a bit more than three times the diameter. Whatever measurement you increase the diameter by you are increasing the circumference by a bit more than three times that.