Lace in general and FT flower basket in particular

Oh my goodness. My first experience with lace. A few tips for anyone about to embark on this slow road to insanity:

  1. If you have an option of lace weight vs. fingering (or even DK), go heavy!!!

  2. One word: LIFELINE. Thanks to dear ol’ Options, it’s not so bad. But don’t think you’re so good at concentrating that you can get away with twenty or thirty rows in between your first time around. You can’t. Especially not if you have small children or pets.

But on to my questions. I looked through the “lace tips” thread on this forum, but I’m having trouble finding any internet source of tips. Any brilliant suggestions for general tips on lace?

Also, has anyone else done the Flower Basket shawl by Fiber Trends? I have had the, ah, privelege of working the first seven rows about twenty times now, and they never seem to improve. When it says “rotate the work” to knit through the garter ridges, what exactly does that mean? Because it’s looked like dookie all twenty times.

Any help would be greatly appreciated! Thanks,

Kristin, I haven’t knit it myself, but there are some extensive notes on the pattern here. Hope that helps…a little! :smiley:


The first time I tried a lace pattern (fan and feather), I spent alot of time frogging it.

I’ve found the best thing to do - and certainly until you become familiar with the pattern, is to mark out the stitch changes first.

With lace you can be continually counting and at some point there’s a good chance you’ll end up lost because of a miscount of maybe only one stitch.

Separate the two jobs - counting and marking first and THEN working the stitches.

All the Best


Also know that lace generally looks like crap until you block it. I haven’t done any pure lace projects, so that’s the only tip I can give you :teehee:

Kirstin, I hope callmesusan doesn’t mind me reposting her hints about working with lace, but I felt that they were really helpful, and may be helpful for you, also. By the way, I think you’re very brave for working this pattern :notworthy: --I’ve admired it for a long time, but out of being sheerly intimidated, I haven’t done it.

  1. Put a sticky note under the line you are knitting (use a charted pattern!!) Get a fresh pack of stickys–they lose their stick.

  2. Write the hard to remember symbols on the sticky in biggish print.

  3. Choose a yarn that doesn’t have much fuzz (when you have to frog, and you will, it will be much easier).

  4. Count your stitches after each lace knitted row (I don’t count rows that are just purling back). I CANNOT STRESS THIS ENOUGH!!! After several lace projects, I still have to kick myself now and then for forgetting to count stitches, only to be off a row and a half later.

  5. Lace patterns are read from right to left (<–) and left to right (—>) on the next line. (?? even rows read right to left, while odd rows read left to right–check this out to be sure! I’m a rookie myself.)

  6. Relax. Unknitting is part of the deal. If unknitting is a BIG drag for you, may reconsider the idea.

  7. With the exception of Charlotte’s Web, which I just finished, I have had to retart every lace pattern at least twice, okay, three, no five, or more times! Keep at it. You’ll get it.

  8. If there is a center stitch, place a marker before the stitch and count at the halfway point. That way if you are off, you will only have to frog part of a row. Also, the marker signals you that the center is coming, which often is accompanied by a break in the repeating stitches.

what a timely thread! I’m planning on starting that shawl next week :hug:

Timely indeed! I, maybe am, could be, might be and am considering starting a lace project. I can read the chart but darned it I know what to do in the spaces that tell me, “no stitich”. Just slip the stitch? As if to knit?

Thank you all so much for posting! Seriously, that was all great advice. And for Vicky (and anyone else considering the Flower Basket Shawl), the link Julie posted is a MUST! Absolutely brilliant required reading. That link even links to another page that shows the funky cast on/first seven rows in pictures. Thanks!


No stitch means: ‘forget about this square on the chart, do nothing, go on to the next stitch immediately.’ This square is empty because to eliminate it from the chart offsets the stitches, it’s usually used where decreases are made WITHOUT enough stitches to replace them within that row. If that’s confusing, just remember - when you get to a ‘no stitch’ box/square, do nothing. Don’t slip. Look at the next square and do whatever it instructs.


:muah: :cheering: :muah: :cheering: :muah: :cheering:
WOW Redwitch, thank you!!! I’ve got to get out of the one square = one stitch always and forever amen mindset.