I am knitting stockinette stitch using combined knitting method (knitting in western style and purling in eastern), and my stitches are leaning to the sides instead of forming a straight vertical line (knit row leans to the right and purl row to the left). I tried adjusting tension and knitting knit and purl rows on different size needles, however, it doesn’t seem to make a big difference. I am using a cotton yarn and 2.75mm needles (2.75 and 3mm when using different size needles). The stitch sizes seem to be very similar so i am not sure if it is a rowing out problem. Is there something i am doing wrong? It’s driving me crazy! I tried googling it but all search results only talk about rowing out issue. I was hoping someone here might be able to help.
I have attached a photo of the swatch i am knitting and also have drawn the way my stitches are lying to explain what i mean.
I think you do not need to worry about it because most likely it will disappear in the first washing.
I have a theory of why they appear: When knitting or purling a stitch you first open it up before pulling the yarn through with the needle. When the stitch is opened up it pulls a bit of yarn from the previous stitch. Depending on if you work on the front side or the back side the stitches are pulled in different direction.
It looks to me like there might be a slight difference in size on some of the rows, but I don’t see that being related to whatever has caused the zigzag effect. And it’s a pretty small difference in size so I wouldn’t worry too much about that. (I’m not a big fan of using different sized needles to correct rowing out because I feel like it doesn’t really fix the actual problem, can sometimes just confuse the issue further, and can also be inconvenient especially if it requires you to purchase additional needles you wouldn’t otherwise need.)
It could have something to do with the twist of the yarn, and how western and eastern methods wrap the stitches in opposite directions which either reinforces or relaxes that twist. Some yarns will tend to accentuate this more than others. But anyway, it doesn’t mean you’re doing anything wrong.
I expect engblom is right about it evening out when the fabric is washed, because there isn’t any significant kind of structural difference.
I would work on trying to keep my knits and purls mirroring each other in terms of the movements and the amount of tension (this is one of the beautiful things about using the combination style, that it makes doing this so much easier than some others) and just trust that any subtle difference between knit and purl rows will either A) even out in the wash, or B) be so subtle that it won’t really be noticeable in the final results.
And on that note I’ll just add that we the knitters tend to be far more critical of our own work than anyone else ever is…
Thank you so much for your replies!
I got used to knitting in round (with no purling) so I really wanted to get a similar even stockinette fabric and those zigzags are just driving me crazy… I will try to wash the swatch and see if that solves the problem.