Almost six years ago, I came up with a variation of Frankie Brown’s ‘Ten Stitch Blanket’ pattern and posted my notes about it on Ravelry. Since then, I’ve had a TON of positive response about my work – something like 8,000 views and more than 500 “helpful” votes!
I’ve also had a fair few PM’s from folks who couldn’t quite figure out what I was talking about in terms of the (admittedly slightly weird) way I was picking up stitches. In the past I’ve just done my best to help people on an individual basis via email and PM, but I’ve finally taken some pictures of the process that I hope might help those of you who are more visual learners (I’m one of you, believe me).
The way the join is written in Brown’s original pattern, it comes out looking (for me, anyway) lumpy and messy. I wasn’t happy with that – I wanted a join that laid as flat as possible while still retaining the decorative look of the join stitches sitting perpendicular to the row stitches. The way I ended up getting that to happen was via a combination of making sure the yarn was in the right place at various points in the process (which, one could argue, is really the basis of all knitting, I suppose), as well as picking the stitches up along the joining edge in a certain way.
Here is the modified pattern as I originally wrote it:
- When doing the CO, I found that the half-hitch method made it far easier later on when I had to knit into the CO edge. Long-tail made too tight of a CO edge for me. YMMV.
- All slipped stitches through the whole pattern are slipped purlwise EXCEPT when you work the K2tog for the joins.
- When you slip purlwise, keep your working yarn off to the right, slip the stitch, then make sure to return yarn to working position by bringing it around to the left and between the needles. If you just bring it to working position from the back, it will mess up the slipped-stitch ridge along the edge and you’ll get a funky, lumpy join later on. It took me about 4 tries to figure this out!
- The original pattern says to work 2 rows of straight garter on all 10 stitches between the decreases of the corners and the increases of the corners. I didn’t like the way that looked, so I omitted it completely.
CO 10 st
K 18 rows of garter, slipping first stitch of every row PURLWISE. Make sure you mark the right side of the work. This will save you much heartache later on!
Work a mitered corner:
Row 1: Sl 1, K8, yfwd, sl 1 pwise, yb, turn.
Row 2: Sl 1 pwise, yb, K9.
Row 3: Sl 1, K7, yfwd, sl 1 pwise, yb, turn.
Row 4: Sl 1 pwise, yb, K8.
Row 5: Sl 1, K6, yfwd, sl 1 pwise, yb, turn.
Row 6: Sl 1 pwise, yb, K7.
Row 7: Sl 1, K5, yfwd, sl 1 pwise, yb, turn.
Row 8: Sl 1 pwise, yb, K6.
Row 9: Sl 1, K4, yfwd, sl 1 pwise, yb, turn.
Row 10: Sl 1 pwise, yb, K5.
Row 11: Sl 1, K3, yfwd, sl 1 pwise, yb, turn.
Row 12: Sl 1 pwise, yb, K4.
Row 13: Sl 1, K2, yfwd, sl 1 pwise, yb, turn.
Row 14: Sl 1 pwise, yb, K3.
Row 15: Sl 1, K1, yfwd, sl 1 pwise, yb, turn.
Row 16: Sl 1 pwise, yb, K2.
Row 17: K1, yfwd, sl 1 pwise, yb, turn.
Row 18: Sl 1 pwise, yb, K1.
Now reverse the process, working back up to 9sts, still wrapping
the st at each turn:
Row 1: Sl 1, K1, yfwd, sl 1 pwise, yb, turn.
Row 2: Sl 1 pwise, yb, K2.
Row 3: Sl 1, K2, yfwd, sl 1 pwise, yb, turn.
Row 4: Sl 1 pwise, yb, K3.
Row 5: Sl 1, K3, yfwd, sl 1 pwise, yb, turn.
Row 6: Sl 1 pwise, yb, K4.
Row 7: Sl 1, K4, yfwd, sl 1 pwise, yb, turn.
Row 8: Sl 1 pwise, yb, K5.
Row 9: Sl 1, K5, yfwd, sl 1 pwise, yb, turn.
Row 10: Sl 1 pwise, yb, K6.
Row 11: Sl 1, K6, yfwd, sl 1 pwise, yb, turn.
Row 12: Sl 1 pwise, yb, K7.
Row 13: Sl 1, K7, yfwd, sl 1 pwise, yb, turn.
Row 14: Sl 1 pwise, yb, K8.
Row 15: Sl 1, K8, yfwd, sl 1 pwise, yb, turn.
Row 16: Sl 1 pwise, yb, K9.
That’s your first corner. As soon as you finish that, you immediately do the whole thing again. This is what brings the work around far enough so that you can start working down the side edge of the previous knitting.
Now you work back along the side of the original piece of knitting, joining as you go:
Row 1: Sl 1 pwise, K8, sl 1 kwise, pick up 1 st from the side of the
knitting (I went underneath the slipped stitch on the edge, YO, pull that back through to the right side), K2tog. This should give you a nice flat stitch on top of the join, and the back side of it should look clean with no lumpy bits.
Row 2: sl 1 pwise, K 9.
Keep doing this until your working edge is even with the end of the previous work. Work a single mitered corner. Continue on with knitting and joining to the previous work, then working corners as necessary, to desired size.
And here is how to do the join:
(It should be noted that I knit English style, so this might be extra awkward for Continental knitters. Can’t help you there, sorry!)
In this first picture, I’ve circled in red the stitch that we want to go under in order to pick up the new stitch:
This is what it looks like when I have inserted my needle under the stitch, preparing for the YO. See how both “legs” of the blue stitch are on top of my needle? I’m not going THROUGH the stitch, but rather, under it:
This is a shot just after I’ve done the YO and pulled the new stitch through to my working side. See how the blue stitch we went under to get this new stitch looks like a little bridge over the new green stitch? That’s what we want!
Finally, here is what it looks like after I’ve knit together the slipped stitch and the new stitch we just picked up. See how the joins lay nice and flat with no bumps sticking up? That’s the ultimate goal.
Hopefully folks find this visual aid helpful. Feel free to PM me on Rav or leave a comment here if you still need further help.