Friday, 14 September 2007

Japananese Knitting - Reading the charts

Common Japanese knitting symbols in patterns

Common decrease/increase notation

A x-y-z sequence means: knit another x rows - decrease/increase y stitches - do this z times.
So the above decrease should be done like this:

1. Decrease 7 stitches
2. Knit 2 rows, bind off 2 stitches, do this twice
3. Knit 2 rows, bind off 1 stitch, do this 5 times
4. Knit 4 rows, bind off 1 stitch, do this 3 times
5. Knit 6 rows, bind off 1 stitch, do this 4 times

Let's do the math now: 7 + 2x2 + 1x5 + 1x3 + 1x4 = 23 stitches.

Other very useful resources on Japanese Knitting

Japanese Knitting Basics

Japanese Basic Stitches

Japanese - English Knitting Dictionary

How to read Japanese Knitting Charts


Jo Anne said...

Hi Silvia, Your help is most appreciated. I received my 250 Stitch pattern book, as well as some other books, and have been doing some studying on the website (I actually have been to the sites you suggested). I am quite confused, possibly because I have too much information in my head. I have decided just to stick with trying to make your sweater from the series #8,even though the book is out of print - using your blog information and any e-mail help you can give me as I do this.

First of all, when I was looking at the appendix in the 250 Stitch pattern book, looking at the symbols that mean the decreases (the upside down "y"), it shows doing the decreases on the purl side and your information said the decreases were the k2tog and SSK. For furture understanding of Japanese instructions, as long as I know it is a decrease, can I do a decrease of my choice, which usually is the k2tog and SSK?

Looking at their appendix where it shows the upside down "y" slanting to the left, I cannot figure that one out.

Any help would be appreciated as I begin to learn reading Japanese patterns.

Jo Anne

Silvia said...

Hi Jo Anne,

first of all you will have to work in pattern on both RS ans WS.
On the RS you can use whatever decreases you like most, in order to get the correct slant. On the next row, on WS you will need the same slant decreases ( so watch your RS a lot when decreasing on the WS :)- but this time you will have to purl the stitches.
The last two charts on page 127 are explaining the decreasings on the WS. The first one is just purl 2 tog.
For the last symbol you have to switch the two stitches first on the left needle - like you would do for a cable for example, then purl them together. I just take them out from the needle then get them back in reverse order.
You will have to experiment a bit - and follow your instinct as well. It is a bit tricky at first but after this there is no other chalange in the pattern. Send me a private email with your e-mail address and I will send you an invitation to join the KAL.
good luck and let us know how it goes.
best wishes,