Knitted Selvedges (or Selvages)
A selvedge or selvage is the very edge of knitted or woven fabric. In textiles, it is usually woven differently than the rest of the fabric to create a firm edge. In knitting, a selvedge is made by working the edge stitch(es) a little differently to create a visual or functional element.
From left to right: Selvedge as it looks on the left edge, right edge, right side and wrong side, of stockinette.
Simple Garter Stitch Selvedge
All rows: Knit first and last stitch.
This selvedge isn’t very decorative, but keeps your edges neat and tidy, and also makes it easy to see where your edge stitches are for seams and picking up stitches.
Double Garter Stitch Selvedge
This selvedge is good for a visible edge. It has a pleasantly pearled texture.
Open Chain Stitch Selvedge
All rows: Slip first stitch pwise. Knit last stitch through back loop.
A simple chain stitch selvedge. You can vary it slightly by knitting the last stitch normally instead of through back loop. This will result in a twisted chain instead of an open one. See the inestimable TechKnitter for more info. The Sweet Oak Shawl and the Crossed Jacket use a chain stitch selvedge.
Chain Edged Double Garter Stitch Selvedge