# How many stitches?

I have made this pattern, and I love it, but its too big. Is there a way I can make it with 50? Please don’t tell me stitches + 1 (that’s knitting lingo I don’t understand- or if you can explain that to me, it would be great!
https://web.archive.org/web/20130523080230/http://www.groupepp.com/dishbout/kpatterns/knittowel.html

When you have a repeating pattern on a piece, it starts out with so many stitches. In that towel, the little waffle squares are six stitches wide and there’s a three-stitch garter stitch border on each side of the towel. If you want it narrower, you leave out six stitches for each square you want to dispose of. Lengthwise, of course, you just stop when the whole thing is as long as you want.

If you notice, the rows are all “do this to these stitches, then do (this in parentheses) to the last three stitches.” If you just cut six, twelve or eighteen stitches, but follow the directions exactly, it’ll still come out right because of the way it’s written.

Agreed. A cast on of 52sts will work.

I’ll try to explain the multiple of ___. Many patterns are a repeat of a set of stitches such as a knit 4, purl 2 that is a total of 6 (4+2) stitches. A pattern would say you need a multiple of 6 stitches. Say I’m doing a dishcloth and I want a knit 4 boarder on each end so that would equal 8 stitches needed for the boarder (4+4). In your example you would like something 50 stitches wide. I would take 50 and subtract the 8 stitches I know I want for the boarder that leaves me with 42 stitches for the pattern. I know my pattern is 6 stitches so I take the 42 that I have for the pattern area and divide it by the stitches in the repeat in this case 6 when I do that I get a 7. Now I know I can do my boarder and 7 repeats of the pattern and it will equal exactly 50. That was lucky and that example fit perfect.

Suppose you thought about 53 stitches would be good when you subtract off the 8 boarder, you have 45 stitches left. Divide the 45 and you get 7 repeats with 3 extra stitches. What do you do then? You can either go from 53 stitches down to 50, or from 53 up to 56. If you must have exactly 50 than you would know this pattern wouldn’t fit for the size you want and would find a different pattern.

When a pattern says +1 or 2 or whatever you will just at that +amount to your total number of stitches. You only add that 1 time NOT for every repeat.

Now whenever you find a stitch you would like to try and it says multiple of ___ you can do a swatch by the above method or if you don’t care how many stitches the finished size is but you know you want it repeated 15 times inside of your board area you would multiple the multiples of ___ x 15 = your body amount of stitches, if there is a +amount add that now add your boarder stitches remember you have boarder on each side so if one side is 3 stitches so is the other side so you would add 6 for your boarder. Whatever the number is that you come up with is how many stitches you cast on.

I hope that helps. If not or if you have questions feel free to ask and I will try to explain it better.