This problem is driving me crazy

I am knitting the Cabled Hoodie, a free pattern by Red Heart, in Red Heart Soft Yarn. I like the sweater, but I wanted it to be inexpensive so the yarn is acrylic. (Usually I’m an acrylic snob.:teehee: )

Here’s the link:

Anyway I had no problem knitting the front, back, and sleeves. Next i should sew raglan sleeves before knitting the hood. Of course, I used the mattress stitch, which has no problem until the end.

I thought this would be so simple, but the stitches at the seam end of the raglan sleeves will not snuggle up to each other. It doesn’t matter how much I tighten or loosen the seam, the stitches just won’t stay together. Over and over again i have undone the seams and redone them, all to no avail. I even tried a cotton yarn for seaming the raglans, but that doesn’t help. :wall:

I have read about mattress stitch on so many internet sites, but I have found nothing about this problem. I have used the mattress stitch in the past with no problem at all.

I am so tired and frustrated with this problem plaguing me for several weeks. I don’t know what to do:?? :

Please, Please help me. Has anyone ever run into this problem? Does anyone have suggestions about how I can solve it?

i really appreciate any help. Joyce

Even though this isn’t a conventional side by side mattress stitch you should still be able to use this seam. However, it’s not working so I’d suggest using a back stitch which works very neatly for seams. Just as in hand stitching, put right sides together and stitch closed.
Sometimes problems come up and the best solution is to move on to another method. Good luck finishing this good looking sweater.

Thanks so much. I had looked at the backstitch, but it seems really scary to me with the right sides together. :think:

However at this point, I guess I should be willing to try anything since the mattress stitch has not been my friend on these four seams.

I’ll practice the backstitch and let you know. Joyce

Yes, practive on two swatches. It really works out very well. I used it forever until I discovered the mattress stitch. I still use it to set in sleeves.

I practiced much on the backstitch. To me, it works much better on fabric than knitting seams. However, it is a good seam and I can see why you use it. It was very difficult for me working the seam with right sides are facing.

I think I unknowingly omitted mentioning a possible crucial part of this pattern. Within the last four rows, two of the rows have double decreases at both ends of the rows right before the first and last stitch. Like this:

Row Beginning: K, double decrease, middle sts, double decrease, K

So as I continued to ponder a solution, it dawned on me that such a large slant at the edges might require more yarn strands in the mattress seam to make it stronger in order to hold the seam together. On the last 4 rows, I added strands 4 more times than normal.

I tested out my theory tonight using mattress stitch. Although it is much more difficult to pull the seam together, the stitches now snuggle up to each other as they should. I’ve only finished one of the raglan seams; I shall attempt this method with the remaining three and hope for the best.

However I think this will work. I can’t believe it, because I’ve struggled over this so long, but I’m thrilled. Also I wanted to share this information with everyone, because I’ve never seen it discussed on the internet and believe me I searched.

So thanks so much for your help. I can do the backstitch now. It made me think some more and find out why the seam wasn’t working.

I hope this all makes sense; if not let me know and I’ll try to explain it better.

Thanks very much. I’m happy that you’ve solved the problem and would love to see a photo of the finished sweater. Good going!