What's the big deal about marling? Jump in to Cecelia Campochiaro's marled designs for MDK Field Guide No. 19, and you'll find out.

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31 Comments
  • Ooh yes I use the count to 10 system. I also add if the group of 3 starts with an odd number it knit, and an even its purl. So 10 has to be a purl. Thank you for the through back of loop decrease tip!

    • Great tip!!

  • I wouldn’t give it away either. Squid ink is beautiful!

  • Waiting for Squid Ink. So glad more is on way!

  • Gorgeous. I wonder if that through the back loop tip works in other cases without looking strange. I have struggled with tight knit togethers in other patterns as well.

  • I suggest using 2 or 3 stitch markers—just enough so that you’ll know fairly quickly if you’ve made a mistake but not so many that they are a nuisance to move. Also, since it’s only in row 2 that the stitches move by two, I suggest using an extra stitch marker, which you place correctly and then remove the stitch marker that arrives two stitches later. This extra marker solves the problem of how to move a marker two stitches backward—an annoying problem at best.

  • I am working on a bias knit and using markers to make sure my count is correct. Every 4-6 rows, I shift the markers a few stitches. With a lot of my knit projects, I do a lot of counting between markers so I don’t need to frog or tink back. Sometimes it is hard to count to 3, let alone 10, but saves me in the long run.

  • Thank you so much for this. Yes, counting by 3 does lead to little extra purls. Grrr. Honestly, I’ve never come home from a knitting event and immediately cast on, but the Marlogram could not be ignored. So much fun!
    Squid Ink is gorgeous and shows off the pattern beautifully. Ah, so many pearls of wisdom in so few paragraphs!

  • Umm, Kay, I hate to be the one to break this to you, but I can’t see any actual marling happening with your scarf…..the blue is lovely though, and I love the gentle transition to the purple! Maybe some marling is hiding there?

    • Kay, don’t panic! You are not imagining it. I see it, down there on the bottom edge (bottom referring to photo orientation). Very very subtly shading to purple.

    • OH IT’S MARLED. Very tonal, low-contrast and small stitches but it’s there. I do want to try a high-contrast combination now, though.

      • Low contrast is the marling for me. Using yarns that are almost the same adds so much depth to the color—a useful trick decades ago before semi-solids became more common. Your scarf illustrates this beautifully.

      • Clearly I will need to see this in person then! My computer screen just isn’t doing it justice!

    • It’s so subtle! It just adds a little bit of shading and slowly it’s more alive than you expected.

  • Normally I am a woman of many words. That’s gorgeous. That’s all.

  • Does it matter if you pull one skein from the middle and the other skein from the outside? Just curious.

  • The marlogram is on my list to knit

  • Counting to 10 made a HUGE difference for me, also. My original mantra of “3-3, 3-1” had way too many threes to keep the count when my mind started to relax and wander about. Will try knitting 3 through the back today. Enjoy!

    • I tried the same thing, counting to 6 then counting to 4–no good!

      • This squid ink marl is gorgeous! I’m going through a “blue “ phase and squid ink is one of the best! I’m using it for a picket fence afghan with a box of minikins. Someone here came up with that brilliant idea. Hopefully I’ll have enough leftover to make the Marlogram.

  • I love your description, its so relatable. Now I just need to feel it, its gorgeous!

  • Gorgeous!!!!!!!!

  • Oh Kay, you rule-breaker, you with the devil may care attitude, you wild thing! I love that you cheated and started early so you could share your wisdom with us. It’s really beautiful!

  • Lifelines, baby. Lifelines.

  • I loved the humor and honesty in your post.
    Ok! I have been holding out because I have so much yarn on hand.
    But they are my favorite colors! So I am going to buy the Squid!!

  • Yes, the count to 10 worked for me. I was ready to give up the cowl. Now it is smooth sailing. The knit 3 together into the back loop works for me also. However, it doesn’t look the same to me as the knit 3 together to the front. I like the symmetry of the edges being the same. I seem to have mastered the looseness that is needed for the knit 3 together from the front. Thank you for the tips. I am using the melon and the dusk colorway–not sure I’ll like it in the end but will continue. Color throws me sometimes.

  • Beautiful! I can’t wait to cast on, but I’m trying to be good and finish a small project that’s on my needles first. Thanks for the helpful tips.

  • Thank you for the candid report, Kay! I’m sold, bought the e-copy of #19, cast on a mini-Marlogram. I am marker-dependent but here, at a glance, when I see i’ve done 3 purls, the next purl bit after K3 will be a 1. On the dec rows, I tried k3tbl and k3tog, both look lumpy, doing central double dec i for a smoother edge. This is happy knitting!

  • So beautiful!

  • Thanks for making me smile this morning! And now I am really tempted to try marling.

  • Kay, your tips sent me to my MDK cart to buy the yarn for the cowl. I loved making the parallelogram so I’m sure I will enjoy this one to as long as I always remember to count to 10.