Tuesday, June 27, 2006


Yarn forward, Yarn back...what the heck?!

Ok...so I've been knitting for almost a year, but this dishcloth pattern is driving me nutty! Everyone seems to find it soo easy, yet I am completely stumped when it comes to row 4 and beyond! I have looked in all of my knitting books for an explanation of the yarn forward, yarn back, and I've come up with nothing. I have tried simply moving my yarn from the back to the front, slipping a stich, and then moving my ball yarn back, but it's not looking like what it should. Also, the slipped stitch doesn't seem to be happening on top of the one before, so it's not creating the banded look. I know that the solution must be quite simple, but I need some help here! Your explanations are greatly appreciated! HELP!!! Must...have...warshcloth...of...my...own...

On the 4th row, when you're knitting and the yarn is in back, when you get to the slipped stitch, bring the yarn forward like you're going to purl, then slip the stitch purlwise, then move the yarn back to the back so you can knit again. I have no idea if this helps or not, but it's my attempt at an explanation.
Basically, the idea is the slip the stitch without the float being visible from the right side. If you slipped the stitch without moving the yarn, there would be little bars across that stitch and the brick pattern would be ruined. hope that helps.
*points up*

What they said. (I know, I'm a new knitter too, and it seemed weird to me too, until I realized that I just had to remember that on the front, I didn't want anything to wrap around the slipped stitch from the third row.)

So, everytime you come to the slipped stitch, just move the yarn to the opposite side of the row stitches you are working on. If you are purling, you have to move the working yarn behind like you are going to knit, slip the stitch, then move the yarn back to the front to purl the next five. Same idea with the knitting.

Hope this clears it up!
I'll add: If you can see that you've made a mistake with the forward vs. yarn back while you're knitting, it is really easy to fix (without ripping back) in row 7 (or row 1, in the second and following repeats). This is the point where you knit into these stitches you've been slipping in rows 3-6, securing the long loop created by all the slipping to your fabric.

To fix it: When on row 7 you reach the slipped stitch that doesn't look quite right, instead of knitting into it, reach down with your right needle (or a crochet hook, if you've got one), reach all the way down to the first row where the slipping started (Row 3), and hook that long loop all those rows down. Hook it from the front bottom, push it off the left needle, then gently pull it out of your knitting. At this point, you want a long loop to be in front of your knitting. Then deposit the loop back on your left needle. Make sure you haven't twisted it around. Knit.

You haven't asked about this next part, but I thought I'd mention, because it was a big revelation to me when I figured it out. In addition to what Nicole says about the yarn forward / yard back really being about keeping that float on the "wrong" side of your work, there is one other thing going on here: All that slipping "knitwise" versus slipping "purlwise" -- this is what prevents that long loop from getting all twisted around during all that slipping.
Forgot to mention (sorry so long!) -- about the slipped stitches lining up on top of eachother. Unfortunately this is probably either a counting mistake (you may have put too few or too many stitches between the slipped stitches, or you may have cast on a few too many or too few stitches) OR an extra stitch might have wiggled itself into your knitting after casting on. If they're not lining up, but they're not lining up *in a consistent way*, my guess is that you have one too few or one too many stitches on the needle. But if this is what's happening, I wouldn't re-do it all, and I certainly wouldn't sweat it (particularly if it was driving me batty). My advice is to just let the written pattern go and slip the same stitches you've slipped before.
I tried teaching this pattern to my mom and she kept pulling the yarn AROUND the needles for a yarn front/yarn back.

It took quite a few tries, but she finally saw that I wanted her to bring the yarn between the two knitting needles, not around them.
I think everyone else explained well so I wont try. But I wanted to offer that you're not alone I had a hard time with this too! I looked it up in all my books and online. After I'd figured out what I was supposed to do, I didnt' realize the intent until after I'd done it a couple of times then it clicked.
Hey guys, thanks for the explanations! I'm going to get off of here and give it another shot! Thanks again, and keep up the great work! Love the pictures!
Oh thank you! I was going NUTS trying to work this out.
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