Pickup on garter edge

I am trying to do a neat job of picking up stitches on the “crannies” of a garter stitch rectangle. I am starting a bag for felting, and I know it will cure my gaps, but I just want to learn to do it properly. Most all the patterns start with a garter stitch rectangle this way.

There are two problems … all the books I have and examples I’ve seen show an edge of Stockinette for picking up stitches. If I pick up in the stitch between the ridges, do I pick up only at the edge loop or the two loops to the next stitch? I get bumps! Then, when I get to the corner and try to pick up from my cast on, I invariable get confused with which loop to pick up and get the wrong # by the end of the row.

I am going to try the knit cast-on from your tutorials and see if it helps me recognize the stitches better there, but the ridges and gullies are still problematic. I appreciate any suggestions …

This is a GREAT web site!

Gloria, I’ll be watching to see the answer as well, since I too am working on the rectangular base for a felted bag and knit the first couple of rows in garter without doing a slipstitch edge as I usually do.

What I meant to do, and what will make things easier for you in the future as well, is to knit the garter rectangle with a slipstitch edge. I do it with a single manuever at the beginning of every row. With the yarn in front, slip the first stitch as if to purl. Put the yarn back and do the rest of the row in knit as usual. You’ll have a nice garter rectangle with what looks like a single stockinette stitch on the edge. It’s much easier to do your picking up that way.

There are other ways to do the slipped stitch edge besides this one, but I prefer this method because you only have to do something at the beginning of each row, and other methods usually have you do something at each end. Just a little easier to remember for me!

What a good idea! I usually do use that same method to make neat edges on stoles’ borders, so I am familiar with it … just didn’t think of it.
Thanks a lot!