Help! Grafting shoulders and pattern doesn't match?!

I’m knitting a stranded cardigan with steeks, and am about to unite the shoulders using three needle bind off. I have the correct number of stitches on each side, but the problem is, the pattern on the front and back don’t match! If I bind off now, the pattern will be jogged and gross at the top of the shoulder. Does anyone know what I did wrong for this to happen?

My cardigan is a v-neck, and I did slight back neck shaping as well.

The pattern is the Fearless cardigan by Amy Detjen.

Thank you!

Welcome to KnittingHelp!
You can fairly easily check the row count by checking the fair isle patternwork. See if you’re close to matching the pattern and if adjusting the row numbers on front and back will help. An extra row or two may be enough to at least match up the patterns.

Thank you for getting back to me, I appreciate it. I don’t know whether I’m understanding you correctly, but I don’t think the row count is the issue in this case, because the front and back are both on the same row. When I did the decreases for the V-neck steek, as well as for the back neck, I think that messed up the symmetry for the front and back shoulders somehow.

Unfortunately, the pattern doesn’t specify which row to end on or where in the pattern to end on. It just says “Stop when you have 18” inches" or “When you’re 6 rows short of the wanted length.”

Is the pattern not lining up across the row? I was assuming that the number of rows was causing the pattern jog but it could also be the number of sts.
Usually the armholes are shaped the same way front and back so the pattern aligns. This sweater looks like it’s steeked at the armholes. Is that right?
Or is it that the diamond pattern doesn’t join to form a complete diamond? That might be adjusted by adding a few rows.

Yes, that’s correct! The pattern is not lining up across the row. And yes, the armholes are steeked, but there was no armhole shaping. You were just supposed to cast on the steek stitches (after leaving a few stitches on a holder) and knit straight up, only doing decreases for the cardigan v-neck, and then the back neck.

But here is what happened: when I went to do the three needle bind off, the front needle stitch began with a white stitch followed by three brown stitches, while the back needle stitch began with two brown stitches. If I grafted them like that, the shoulder seam would look bad. The problem is, I don’t know how that happened, especially because both sides had an equal number of stitches. I’m guessing the decreases had something to do with it.

That’s a tough one. I assume the back is 2 brown and then a white? Even if you knit two sts together to start you still won’t be in register. What if you knit another row on either the front or the back or take out a row? How does that change the line up? A row here or there won’t make a measureable difference.

Yes, the back is 2 brown and then a white. If I can’t figure out a way, I think I will take your suggestion and add or subtract a row or two and see if that makes it better. Thank you!

Do you happen to know what caused the problem in the first place and how to prevent it in the future? I’m wondering if my decreases were the problem.

I think of it as a problem on the armhole side. If the steek is cut in the exact center of a diamond, there should be the same pattern on each side of the steek (mirror images). Given enough rows in the armhole, you would be able to match up the pattern at the shoulders, starting at the armhole edge.

I see. How do I ensure that the steek is in the exact center of the diamond at the armholes? Would having equal numbers of repeats in the front and back automatically take care of that?

Yes, that would do it.

Thank you!

i thought i’d chime in here… i don’t know anything about steeking, or fair isle. but i know there are a good number of guys on who practice both of those techniques (lots of vests, sweaters, etc). and they may have some first-hand experience with this, if you wanted some extra help/suggestions/ideas in addition to the wisdom and experience that’s here. just a thought :slight_smile:

Wow, thanks! I think I will. Thanks for the suggestion!

ETA Silly question…are women allowed to ask questions in the forums? Haha sounds so weird to type, just don’t want to intrude if it’s a males-only thing.

it’s all-inclusive, no worries! there are women-members, but the focus is on the community of men who knit, which while being more visible than ever, is still a small percentage of the total. but have no fear, ask away :wink: