Ask Patty: Simple Fixes for Tidier Shawls

February 19, 2020

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25 Comments
  • I understand the explanation with the purl stitch after the yarn over, but for me it happens even with a knit AFTER the yarn over. The one after the decrease is always too big and sloppy… ant fixes for that?

    • Same fix. If your tension varies you can control the size of your YO by the path your yarn takes.

  • Garter purl! Brilliant, thank you!

  • Thanks Paty, so interesting your class. Great section

  • What yarn are you knitting with (coral colored) in your demo? It’s lovely.

    • No idea. Just a scrap from my teaching bin.

  • So easily explained. Thank you.

  • Fun and informative read. I’ll pay more attention to my yarn overs now – thanks!

  • brilliant, thank you so much.

  • Mind = blown. Thanks, Patty, these tips are amazing!!

  • Yarn over fix is slightly brilliant. Oddly enough I am knitting a sweater right now where this is happening. Too far along to worry as it is now a detail on the sleeve (the hole you can see) but next time I have it down. Thanks.

  • Purl garter! So simple but mind blowing! Love the way you explain. Just found your site but huge fan already!

  • Purled garter stitch? You could knock me over with a feather. Thank you Patty for once again BRINGIN THE TRUTHS.

  • Purled garter! I wish I had read this before I just finished a shawl with a tight garter edge. 🙂 Next time!! Great fix.

  • Super genius! Thanks so much for this. I always try to do exactly what the “rule is.”

  • The bit about purled garter stitch will be life-changing when a shawl calls for a garter tab start!!! I always have trouble finding where to pick up my stitches bc the tab is so tightly packed. Thank you.

  • Great stuff. Once I worked through all of what I thought were odd YO instructions in a really old Patons booklet, from Australia. Four sorts of YO’s. The variety of them to deal with exactly the situation found in today’s problem shawl YO’s and comparable discrepancies. Never have I seen this attention to what actually happens and a technical response in American instructions. Wonderful there are good minds out there to sort things out!

  • Mind Blown! Thanks 😀

  • Thank you!

  • What about moss/seed stitch as an alternative to garter???

  • This is so obvious! Why oh why has it taken so long to get the answer? I know, you told us in the article. I find it obvious when you look at the picture where you drew little lines showing the slant direction of the yarn overs. Mirror image! My next triangular shawl will utilize both of the tips in this article. Thank you

  • I have a related but different problem… When knitting shawls from the center out with a 2- or 3- stitch garter selvedge, ONE side of the selvedge (from the center) is consistently tighter than the other to varying degrees. I just bound off a lace shawl, and one side is 12” shorter—and much tighter—than the other. I was alternating 2 skeins of hand dyed yarn on the tight side but tried to be very careful to keep that loose. I consciously try to knit all selvedge stitches very loosely but it just never seems to work out. I spent nearly two months knitting this and may swear off shawls until I can find a solution to my problem… I apologize if I should be posting this in another comment section.

    • Great question for a future column. Don’t forget if you have a question, email: [email protected]

  • Mind. Blown.

    (As I sit here with a moss stitch shawl over my shoulders that has this exact issue.)

    Thank you!

  • Thank you, Patty, for the yarnover explanation. I’m working on the Lille Dahlia pattern and was so dissatisfied with the symmetry of my yarnovers. Traditional directions for making a yarnover before a purl stitch seemed to produce even sloppier results. Having now worked the charted section of this pattern with your yarnover directions, in fatter yarn and with bigger needles to really understand the pattern, I’m ready to pick up the real project again. Thank you again!