Hot Tip: Mark your rows

Hot Tip: Mark your rows

Rather than using a counter or making tick marks in the pattern margins or what have you, many knitters prefer to keep track of their work right in the work. We’ve talked before about using stitch markers to mark your rows or increases/decreases — so you can see at a glance exactly what you did and where — but Jerome Sevilla of Gridjunky has a less jangly method, which he found in a 1977 book called Scandinavian Knitting Designs by Pauline Chatterton. In this method, a length of contrasting scrap yarn is carried behind the work and used to mark every tenth row (or whatever it is you want to keep track of). When you get to the spot you want to mark, simply move the scrap yarn between the needles to the front of the work. Work the next stitch, then move the scrap yarn back to the back. So what you have on the front of the work is a single wrapped stitch each time that’s been done, as seen in Jerome’s photo above, and on the back you have a long vertical float from that stitch up to the next one marked. When you’re all done, just snip the waste yarn and unpick it.

For a steady stream of inspiration from Jerome, follow his blog or Instagram.


PREVIOUSLY in Hot Tips: Save time at try-on

Photos by Jerome Sevilla, used with permission

29 thoughts on “Hot Tip: Mark your rows

  1. hmmmm……seems to me that if you did it right,the running stitch marker could be incorporated into the work as a design element….i wouldn’t be surprised if jerome,aka “gridjunkie”,has already considered that possibility….

  2. I usually use pins to mark, but Linda’s idea of incorporating the markers as a design element appeals to me. I love Karen’s red threads.
    I sometimes use seams as a part of my design. I have a feeling that I’d like to make the construction of the knitted piece more obvious and incorporate that into the visual appeal of the object, a kind of inside outness, or everything’s out in the open. It could be friendly and fun. Transparent.

  3. You can also use a rubber band (like you use for braces or hair) to slip around the stitch -knitted onto the stitch- to mark the row.

  4. Oh this is a good idea. Thanks for bringing it to our attention, not everything that we learn to make things easier for us needs to be shiny and new, sometimes old school is much better…

  5. Clever! I myself use safety pins – if I need to increase 10 times every 5th row I pin 10 safety pins to the bottom of the work and every time I do an increase I move and pin where I made the increase . When I’m out of pins I’m done increasing (or decreasing)! This came from Maggie Righetti’s “Knitting in Plain English”.

  6. Love this! I’ve been using the removable stitch marker method for keeping track of decreases. I love that since I clip as many stitch markers as decreases that I need to work into the first decrease and when the stitch markers are used up, I’m done! I think I might combine these two methods from here on out! I love ways to see at a glance what I’ve done and what needs to be done.

  7. Very cool! I just learned about using scrap yarn as a stitch marker from Lucy Neatby. Such a neat technique! I love how I’ve been knitting for over 10 years and I’m still learning about things like this. :)

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  9. Love this tip. Love your citation for it too! Really enjoy your respect and appreciation of all the knitters and writers that came before we were ever around (as well as all those who are here now). Thanks!

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