Q about Log Cabin Knitting

Can you help me? I found this book called “Mason-Dixon Knitting” and on page 68 the author describes “How to Log Cabin” (how to knit a blanket that looks like a log cabin quilt).

I’ve never picked up stitches before, but it doesn’t look all that hard, so I thought I’d try this. The directions say to cast on 20 stitches and knit 24 garter ridges. Then bind off , leaving 1 stitch on the needle. Then, you are supposed to turn the rectangle clockwise so the single stitch is in the upper right-hand corner. You are then supposed to pick up 1 stitch in each garter ridge with a new color, ending up with 24 stitches.

My problem is that I’m not understanding OR doing this right. I had 1 stitch left over from the original bind off. Then I’m supposed to pick up 24 additional stitches?!? That will give me 25 stitches, right??? If I’m supposed to use a new color each time I pick up new stitches, what do I do with the original yarns?? Do I cut them off but leave a few inches to tie off later?

I did a practice of this and I did end up with 25 stitches and the original color of yarn hanging down. What am I not “getting” here???

Any help here would be GREATLY appreciated!!! Has anyone done this before and had it come out alright? This looks like a GREAT way to use up left-over yarn—if only I could get this right!!! I don’t want to end up with an extra stitch each time I go to add a new strip!!!


You will have 24 sts, but they’re down the side from where the BO was.

I found a picture tutorial on their blog that shows where you start and where you pick up, etc.

I have that book! Log Cabin is easy and fun, but you do sometimes get a little bored of massive rows of garter stitch if you make a big blanket. What I’ve done is set it aside and just do a row or three now and then and I’m using stash yarn. :thumbsup:

That link should answer your questions just fine.

Cindy, the link should serve you well, but if you have further questions you can p.m. me, I’ve done several. They make terrific baby blankts. People at baby showers ooh and aww over them. Plus, choose the right yarns and they can last through several kids.

Yeah, I knew I had seen how to do this on their blog, but man I had a hard time finding it. It’s not the best laid out blog site for searching.

Thanks for that link!!! I discovered that she said, “You can pick up 29 or 30 stitches”. Soooooo, it looks like it doesn’t matter how many stitches I have, just so they’re evenly across!!!

I can’t wait to get started!!!


You don’t want to pick up too many, that will make the sts ruffley rather than lie flat. If you’re knitting 24 garter ridges (that’s 48-49 rows) you pick up one st in each ‘dip’ or valley between the ridges. Plus the one leftover from your BO.

I knit 3 Log Cabin blankets last year. The last remaining stitch from Log#1 [B]is stitch #1 for Log#2.[/B] However, sometimes I still picked up 24 new stitches, but when I doubled back and worked the WS back to the first stitch (that was a remnant from log#1), I knit it together with the first stitch of log#2. Thereby bringing the stitch count for log#2 back to 24st.

Remember, [B]always [U]pick up[/U] your stitches with RS facing. [/B]
I use a crochet hook to pull the new pickup stitches through, using the head of the hook to pickup, then after I have maybe 10 stitches loaded onto the crochet hook, I put them onto the knitting needle by shoving them off the tail end of the crochet hook.

[B]Always [U]bind off[/U] a log with RS facing.[/B] The you just pivot the log to the right to begin picking up stitches for the new log.

[B]Example: [/B]
Bind off Log#1.
Log#1 “bind off row” is NORTH.
Now, pivot clockwise.
The WEST side of Log#1 is now at the top.
You may now begin to pick up stitches for Log#2.
And so on.

I knit two styles of Log Cabins. The standard Log Cabin, and the Moderne Log Cabin.
Both styles are featured in the Mason-Dixon book.

I love those afghans. It might be a good stash buster project for after my surgery when I will probably be sitting around the rehab center for long periods of time.

I found a log cabin tutorial on you tube. That extra stitch which incl
One of the original colour, will be part of a decrease on your next row where you will knit the
Last two stitches together…the orig colour and your new added one.

I am thinking of trying to make one for a nursing home resident. Worried about the blocking if it comes out lopsided.

Would love to see a picture of yours.

Bluejaygirl - This is a really old thread. You might want to start a new one about your project because more people will go to a new thread than an old one. :hug:

Log Cabin blankets are great and very easy. They are great for using left over stash, too. Just use the same weight and fiber yarn. If you use a washable yarn no blocking needed which is usually best with big blankets anyway. :wink:

If you haven’t looked on Ravelry yet give it a go. There are tons of ideas there for Log Cabins!

Thank you Jan. I am new to this and after posting a response I saw the date was originally 2010. LOL!

I tried a dishcloth size log cabin today, and gave up when adding the second colour looked off kilter. Had to do with picking up the stitches on the ends clearly wrong.

Your encouragement has made me rethink giving up. I will watch a video on how to pick up stitches and try it again. I love the idea of using up yarn, and seniors love multiple colours. My goal lap blankets.

Thanks again!

Here’s an extensive video that may have some tips to help you out. Very pink does an excellent job with knitting instructions.

Oh! That is a great video, Mary Anne! BlueJay if you look at that you should have most of your questions answered.

A couple thoughts… Very Pink prefers animal fibers. If you do too keep in mind your recipient. To donate it’s often best to make sure the blanket is easily washable. So use super wash fibers or acrylic or cotton or blends that are washable. I doubt a nursing home has the capability to hand wash and block a blanket.

Secondly… don’t worry too much about the edges being perfect or square. As you can see from the video/pattern you will have borders so a little wonkiness will even out with the border and weight of the blanket.

Now I want to make one! I’ll have to look at my stash and see if I have what I need. :thumbsup:

Just for fun I love looking at all the blankets made in “log cabin style” on Ravelry. As you can see some are not the traditional log cabin method, but with a little practice and ingenuity you can alter the basic pattern to create something new. I’ve only done traditional myself, but maybe some day… :wink:

You made me laugh that now you wanted to make one. I am the same with new things!

I have lots of leftover worsted weight yarn. I hope that works.

Would love to see pix of yours…I will post mine if I can do it and can figure out how to post a pix. LOL!

Thanks for everything.

I found a pattern type I like on mason-dixon knitting. No squares to sew together. Since I am making a small lapghan it may work.
Will make sure right angles ok without a border.

Wanted to thank you for your help. I am having such fun making the log cabin blanket. I know it will bring a smile to dementia patients!

I have ordered the Mason Dixon Knitting book as well.

No idea how to get a picture the blanket here.

Happy knitting!

Oh good! That book has several great patterns in it! :slight_smile: