Posted on Wednesday, February 11 2009 at 5pm
Charts do look rather complicated the first time you use them, but they’re actually quite simple to work with and once you get used to them you can instantly see what you're about to knit, making it really easy to spot a mistake.
If you haven’t used a chart before, we suggest that you:
Make a photocopy. You can increase the size of the chart at the same time so it’s easier to read and then mark off each row with a highlighter as you knit it.
Have a go at a section of the chart using some spare yarn. It will help you familiarize yourself with the symbols.
Take your time on the first few rows. Once you’ve got the pattern set up you’ll quickly see how the sections work and match them to the charts.
Learn to read your knitting. If you can't tell a yo or a k2tog from an ordinary stitch once you've knitted it, it's going to be hard to tell if your knitting matches the chart. On the other hand, once you can it should be easy: after all, a chart is just a different way of representing the knitting stitches, like a road map, if you will.
Try this simple lace chart to get started. To help you out if you get stuck, we've written out the pattern next to it.
Start knitting at bottom from right to left. This sounds counter
intuitive but it means that as you knit the project, you can compare it
to what's in front of you and your knitting should look like the chart.
- This is a garter stitch lace pattern, so most of the
squares are knit. On many charts, a white square will indicate stocking
stitch (i.e. knit on a right side row, purl on a wrong side).
you're knitting a right side row, it should look like the chart, stitches
should line up as they do on the chart making it really easy to
see if you've made a mistake.
- Use a smooth yarn, preferably one you've used before for this swatch: save the laceweight mohair for your next project!
- Click on the chart to get a larger version, then print it off so you can mark off each row as you knit it.
Click to enlarge
Cast on 14 sts.
Row 1: Knit.
Row 2 & every alt row: Knit.
Row 3: K4, k2tog, yo, K2, yo, k2tog, K4.
Row 5: K4, yo, k2tog, K2, k2tog, yo, K4.
Row 7: K3, yo, k2tog, K4, k2tog, yo, K3.
Row 9: K2, yo, k2tog, K6, k2tog, yo, K2.
Row 11: K2, k2tog, yo, K6, yo, k2tog, K2.
Row 13: K3, k2tog, yo, K4, yo, k2tog, K3.
Row 15: K4, k2tog, yo, K2, yo, k2tog, K4.
Row 17: Knit
The chart key tells you what to knit for each square on the chart.