A question and a rant


When ripping back, does it matter what kind of stitches they are? I mean, is a purl stitch ripped back the same way as with a knit stitch (including yarn overs and such)? And I’m assuming if a slipped stitch is in the row, there’s no “ripping” to be done but just transferring the slipped stitch back to the other needle in pattern?


Is ribbing the most frustrating thing on the planet or am I just bonkers? I’m working on a scarf that is all single ribbing and I thought it would be an easy project because hey, I know how to knit and purl! K1, P1, rinse, lather, repeat until finished.

I’ve frogged the whole thing 3 different times now. Maybe it’s because my yarn is so dark that it’s hard to distinguish one stitch from another. Maybe it’s because I’m doing it while sitting on the couch with DH watching TV. Maybe I shouldn’t have thought I could teach myself to knit in the first place. :wall:

One thing not to do is to frog too early with ribbing. It takes a few inches to start looking like ribbing and after a few more it starts to really look good. Don’t give up!

If you’re an english style knitter it can be a bit frustrating with all that throwing back and forth. I taught myself continental just for a scarf that was all ribbed. :lol:

As to your question… Yes, you rip back the same way no matter what stitch. The problem is getting your stitches twisted or being able to pick up stitches like YO (yarn overs). It’s easy enough to fix the twisted ones by knitting into the back of the stitch. I think YO would be harder… :think:

Don’t feel too bad…I’ve gotten the hang of knit and purl, so I thought i would try an “easy” pattern with knitting and a few slipped stitches…holy crow…I just had to put it aside!!

I switch to a simpler project for a little while, then switch back when its nice and quiet (and I’m fully awake!!)

I’m new at it, but I love it…even if I get a little frustrated :smiley:

I avoid ribbing unless it’s for just a few rows… short rows, like on a hat. I suppose I could knit combo or something, but it’s really easy to avoid for the most part.

I’m not a big fan of lots and lots of ribbing rows, 1x1 or 2x2. Seed Stitch/Moss Stitch too. UGG! But like Jan/somebody said, it does take at least an inch or more before it starts looking right.

Are you really “ripping back,” or are you “unknitting?” Since you mentioned slipping the stitch back, it sounds like you are actually unknitting (known as “tinking”–“tink” is “knit” spelled backward!).

If you’re ripping out, you just slip the needles out and unravel by pulling the working yarn, and it all comes out without any concerns on your part (except stopping in time, getting the stitches back on the needles, and figuring out where you are in the pattern).

But if you’re tinking, for knit stitch, you slip the left needle behind the right needle, into the previous stitch and pull it out. For a purl stitch, the left needle will be placed in front of the right needle to get the previous stitch, without tangling your working yarn.

If you learn to “read” your knitting, ribbing is easy. You just knit the knits (as they appear) and purl the purls (as they appear). The knit stitches look sort of like they’re wearing a scarf and the purls look sort of like their neck is in a noose.

Hope that helps.

Lisa: Well, in my “teach yourself to knit” book it calls going back to fix a mistake “ripping back.” I’ve never seen the term tink or unknit in any of my literature until you mentioned it.

It said to transfer the right needle (with the working yarn) into the left…basically just switch hands…and then place the right needle into the stitch just under the most recently made one, then slip the most recently made stitch off the left needle and pull the working yarn to unravel the knot completely. (going by memory here as I’m at work and don’t have my book with me). You do this until you’ve worked backwards to where the mistake is, undo the mistake, and go on in normal pattern from there. That’s what they referred to as ripping back.

I just didn’t know if it mattered when doing that if the stitches were knit or purls, if you rip back or tink as you say the same way for both.

Jan in CA: I had enough rows finished to know that something was off, because it wouldn’t be the entire row, just half a row here and there would look wonky and very obviously wrong. I figured it would be easier (and faster) to just unravel the whole thing and start from scratch rather than try and rip back to try and fix the mistakes. Except now I’ve done that 3 times now and I’m almost afraid to start over again, lol.

Yeah, if you’ve ripped back (or tinked/unknit) too many times the stitches may have gotten twisted plus there is always the possibility that you knit a purl or purl a knit so it wouldn’t look right. All patterns just take practice. You’ll get the hang of it. :thumbsup:

I know I should be “reading” my knitting and going by what the stitch looks like versus trying to keep track of what I just did in my head, but it’s hard to do that on this project. The yarn I’m using is dark, dark, dark purple and it has a slight sheen to it (it’s the Lion Brand Vanna’s Choice yarn) so it makes it really hard to distinguish one stitch from another unless I stop and s-t-r-e-t-c-h it all out on the needle, squint like I’m going blind, and hope I’m right. :rofl:

I told my husband (whom the scarf is for) he’d better appreciate it because it’s going to be the death of me!