Illusion Knitting

6 May

Knitting up my very first Illusion scarf, i came to the conclusion that all the instructions are confusing for beginners.  I can’t tell you how many times i ended up unraveling my work just because i couldn’t figure it out.  I searched pages and pages of instruction.  Some of them said to read the pattern from the bottom.  Some said the top.  Some said read it like you would a regular pattern; left to right and right to left.  Others said read only from left to right while others contradicted it even further.  One thing for sure, they all agreed on one thing.  Each line of pattern consists of four rows.

So, i have decided to write my own blog post for those who have suffered through hours of agonozongly confusing video tutorials, through painstakingly contradictory on-line tutorials, and make it easy and simple to understand.

We’ll be using the pattern i am using.  It is not my pattern, i believe it belongs to Wooly Thoughts. 

For this, you will need two yarn colors, preferably complimentary colors.  Color A will be the background colors (the white keys) and color B will be the raised colors (the black keys).

Before we get into reading the pattern, i have to introduce you to the four row pattern you will become best friends with during your experience.  We’ll call them Rows 1-4.

Row 1 (color A): Knit.
Row 2 (color A): Knit the light squares, purl the dark squares.
Row 3 (color B): Knit.
Row 4 (color B): Knit the dark squares, purl the light squares.

That is it.  The hardest thing you will have to remember.    I promise!

Before i post the pattern, let me explain a few things.  This pattern is numbered on the top and bottom. This makes it easy.  Start in box 1-1.  For the pattern, i will refer to the rows as lines as this is all that matters.  Each square represents the kind of stitch you will do, so talk about columns really is not necessary.  Just concentrate on the line you are on.

image

So here is the pattern. The only thing critical about the columns is knowing how many there are, to know your cast on number. In this case it is 25 stitches. You can either cast on 25 and count it as your first row, or cast on and start your first row. In my case, i counted it as row 1.

Row 1 (color A): Knit (or cast on, but ONLY THIS ROW – all other repeated row 1’s will be knitted).

Now, instead of worrying about line 2 of the pattern, imagine line 1 magically duplicates itself 3 more times…as it will for every line of the pattern. Line 1 gets repeated with your 4 row pattern.
So…

Row 2 (color A): knit the light squares, purl the dark. (In this case, all the squares on this line are light, knit them all).

Row 3 (color B): Knit.

Row 4 (color B): Knit the dark squares, purl the light squares (all squares are light, so you’d purl).

Line 1 is finished. The magical duplicated rows receed back into itself, and you can move on to line 2. (Line’s 2 and 3 are the exact same process; both lines are light colored, so just repeat line 1).

Line 4 is where it gets fun! Here, color is introduced, and, if you’re anything like me, is where your understanding of illusion knitting will blossom.

I think its also a great time for me to remind you that this pattern is read, ALWAYS, from left to right. This is also a great example to use when i say that all you really need to care about are rows 2 and 4. Row’s 1 and 2, no matter the color, no matter the pattern, will ALWAYS be knitted…unless otherwise noted.

So…
Line 4.

Row 1 (color a): Knit.
Row 2 (color a): Knit the light squares, purl the dark squares (in this pattern, the first 10 squares are light, so you’ll K10. The next 15 squares are dark so you’ll P15).

Row 3 (color B): Knit (once again, the pattern doesnt matter here. Knit across).

Row 4 (color B): Knit the dark squares, purl the light squares (this pattern has 10 light squares so you would P10, and 15 dark squares so you would K15).

Line 5.

Row 1 (color A): Knit.
Row 2 (color A): Knit the light squares, purl the dark squares (purl across accrding to the pattern).
Row 3 (color B): Knit.
Row 4 (color B): Knit the dark squares, purl the light squares (according to this pattern, you’d knit across).

Work in this manner for all the lines, and repeat until desired length.

I find it helpful to keep a pen and paper nearby to tally the lines and rows. I also have found it helpful to write down the instructions (because i often get confused when just reading the pattern).

I hope this has helped anyone finding themselves confused with illusion/shadow knitting! I know it was fusturating finding the same instructions that were unhelpful over and over again.

If you need further explination, please leave a comment and i will try to help you to the best of my ability!

Until then, happy knitting!

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