Knit one, Purl one, Knit one, RIP ALL!

I began project number four last night. It’s another scarf, but my first that isn’t a plain knit stitch. The pattern starts off as so:

Scarf Lower Band

Cast on 38 sts loosely

Row 1: (K1, P1) across.
Row 2: (P1, K1) across.
Rows 3-5: Repeat Rows 1 and 2 once, then repeat Row 1 once more

Okay, I understand all that, and can even manage to do it. What I CANNOT manage is keeping track of what I’ve done! I know to use a row counter for rows, but when each row is different, that doesn’t help. I ripped this stupid thing out FOUR times last night! As I type, I am now back at zero. :wall:

I guess the fact that it was 1:00 in the morning, and I was simultaneously watching tv, could have had something to do with it, though. :oops:

I take a piece of scrap paper and use symbols for each row I have finished. Plus sign for row A, check mark for row B, etc. That way, I can just look at my list if I get distracted. If I have to count rows, I make a check when I finish a row, and I find that more reliable than the row count gadget. Espec. since my DD likes to click the button on it.

That sounds like a good idea, Sara.

I have another question, which may sound idiotic. :oops:

When I’m knitting one, purling one, and so forth…if I get distracted from my work for a moment, is there a way to tell which I’ve done by looking at the stitch? I realize I pull the yarn to the back for knitting, and to the front for purling, but sometimes I can’t remember if I just pulled the yarn to the front to do a purl stitch, or if I just completed one and haven’t yet pulled it to the back. Silly, I know, but my concentration skills these days are not the best. :frowning: I’d like to be able to tell by looking what I’ve just done and what I need to do. :??

This question is best answered with a visual aid. Check out Amy’s Video on ribbing. She mentions your question in this video.

Good Luck!

Thanks, ekgheiy! I’ll do that. I don’t think I’ve watched that one yet.

I run into this all the time.
I am knitting shawls with a k3, p3 pattern throughout.
I find it is sometimes easy enough just to count stitches on the needle to find out what is the next stitch.

Thanks, loofnicnad. That sounds logical enough. :smiley:

another way to keep track of alternating rows is to use two different color needles… when the red needle is in my right have I know to start with a knit, if the gray needle is in my right hand I know to start with a purl… or whatever.

another way to keep track of alternating rows is to use two different color needles…

What a neat idea! :smiley:

Hilde, Your so darn smart!!! :thumbsup: Thanks for the tip!

Rennagayle, I know what you are going through :wall: I have done the same thing… Keep :XX: you will get it :cheering:

Hugs to you :heart:

Thanks for the encouragement, Ann. I get so amazed when I read posts by various ones on here who are knitting things I only dream about, and then they mention that they’ve only been knitting for a few weeks or a few months. :shock:

Renn, I know exactley what you mean. Knitting comes so easy for many on here.

I too see what people have knitted when they say " I HAVE ONLY BEEN KNITTING FOR A 2 MONTHS" :??

I can say this. I may never be a great knitter, however, i have a BEAUTIFUL FLOWER GARDEN THAT PEOPLE DROOL OVER :cheering: not yet here in Michigan as its still cold. But i will very soon. :smiley:

I look at this way. Each of us have something we do BEST.

Keep :XX: and let us know how you are doing! :heart:

I take a post-it note and write the pattern repeat and then do tick marks and x’s adn checks as I finish, so in this case I would write (one on each line) 1, 2, 1, 2, 1.
The first time I do each one I might do a tick mark, the second time around I might do an X. That way I can see what row I’m on and what round I’m on.

And yet another good suggestion-thanks! :smiley:

Seriously, if I hadn’t discovered this forum, I think my knitting needles would have been dropped off at the Goodwill by now! :doh:

Rows and stitches, rows and stitches.

One thing I suggest to ANY knitter, if they havn’t done it all ready, is to knit up a swatch and carefully examine exactly what the yarn is doing for each type of stitch.

What makes knitting knit? Why do the loops need to go in one direction, and not the other? What happens when you turn the loop around and twist a stitch?

What does a purl in the row below look like? A knit stitch? Where does the yarn want to lay naturally (front or back) when you’ve knit one or purled the other? If you intentionally drop a stitch, what happens? How do you get it back on the needle the way you want to? For that matter, HOW do you get it back on the needles the way you want to?

Knit a few rows in ribbing… What does it look like? How do the stitches lie? Can you tell by the shape of the stitch in the row below what the next stitch should be?

Try knitting a few rows in seed stitch… What does that look like? Can you tell by the stitch below what the next should be?

The reason why I say this is because if you know how knitting works then you can figure out a bunch about what your next stitches should be. If you know that you should be alternating K and P in a certain order, you can tell by what is happening in the row below what should happen in the row you’re in.

Soooo… If you’ve created row one of K1, P1… when you turn the needles your first stitch should look like a K stitch on the facing side; a V instead of a bump. So you know you should P. Conversely, if you look and you see a V, a bump, a V, a bump (the first stitches of Rows one and two as stated in the pattern) then you should do one more Row 1… Then on with the pattern.

Knowing why knitting does what it does is the most telling and informative road map to what to do next…

Good luck knitting!

I know that you’re right, Yellowness. I think I let my impatience to knit keep me from taking the time to do that. For years, I tried crocheting at different times, but could only ever do it as long as I had a teacher (usually my mom) sitting next to me. Once off alone, when I’d hit a snag, I could never figure out what to do on my own.

Then, along came my sis-in-law who taught me to crochet torn rag strips into rag rugs using a Q hook. For the first time in my life, I finally “got” crocheting. Using a really big needle and having those huge size stitches enabled me to “see” what the stitches looked like and how they were supposed to connect. I still struggle with reading patterns, as I seem to have a mental block at figuring out what they’re ever saying to do, but as to how the stitches are supposed to look, I now know!

Along those same lines, as you suggested, I need to learn what my knit stitches are supposed to look like. I think I’ll work on a sample swatch using my 15 needles. That should make the stitches large enough that I can see what’s going on. :figureditout:

Thanks for the suggestion. :smiley:

I just hope it helps :slight_smile: I think it’s one of the most valuable things to learn… Knowing what the heck I’m actually doing (as opposed to just blindly following a pattern with crossed fingers and faith), or at least being able to sit and figure it out given enough head scratching has been so incredibly useful to me.

Best of luck!

Yes, there’s much to be said for the effectiveness of ‘head scratching’! :?? :mrgreen: