• cathy

Stitch Charting in the Western World

It’s 8:00 AM in Boulder Colorado and I’m typing away, while sipping my second cup Peet’s (Major Dickison’s) coffee. I mention this because although coffee is important in the morning, it is the act of typing which is most germaine to the topic of the day. Have you ever thought about how English reads from left to right, yet knitting is always worked right to left? I never have, until I started working on a stitch charting feature for KnitWiz.

I wanted to have a way to incorporate stitch patterns into KnitWiz instructions so they would be centered automatically without needing any size information ahead of time. Several months later and the mission is accomplished. Not only is the information incorporated into the instructions, but you can use the Stitch Charting feature to add your stitches - letting the stitch charting software create written instructions for you.

So how does it work? Well, here’s where reading direction matters, for both reading charts and creating them. Before my fingers are comfortable with a pattern I like to read the written instructions. I read the front-facing side (RS) rows from left to right and follow along working right to left. Eventually though I just refer to the chart, working in the direction of knitting. Likewise, when charting written instructions, I find it easier to chart from left to right. On right-side rows I’ll begin reading from the end of a row which corresponds to the left side of chart, and chart my way from left to right. If the pattern stitch is to be worked flat I’ll read the next (WS) row of instructions from left to right, and continue charting the wrong-side rows from left to right.

As an example, let’s look at a Celtic Plait stitch pattern I’m using in a new Quick-start Design. The sweater is a top-down raglan with a center-front panel and worked in the round. Here’s the finished panel stitch pattern:

Watch the how-to video creating stitch chart at KnitWiz:

Bonus Tip: There's no need to download charts you'll be using in your designs. All project instructions come complete with any charts created.

In our next post we'll be showing how you can use stitch charting in your own designs.

Happy Knitting, fellow KnitWizards!


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