sample image for Stairsteps: a mosaic knitting chart, by Naomi Parkhurst

Stairsteps: a mosaic knitting stitch pattern

I was looking at an encoded word mosaic stitch pattern I was debating posting this morning. While I’m not going to post that one, it gave me the idea for this one. (This one is not encoded; it’s just an abstract pattern I like.) This is the kind of design that I came up with on my own that feels like something that other people probably came up with on their own, too. Sometimes designing is like that! =

A nice thing about mosaic knitting is that the charts are similar to the final appearance of the knitting, so I’m not going to provide a swatch. Mosaic knitting looks difficult, but it’s not as hard as it looks! Basically, knit two-row stripes, and slip stitches from the row below to make the contrasting pattern.

Here’s a detailed blog post I wrote about how it works.

This is a Barbara-Walker-style mosaic chart. Each row of squares in it represents two rows of knitting (which is why there’s a row number at each end). The square in the column to the right of the row numbers indicates the color of yarn being worked in that line. So in rows 1 & 2, all black squares are knit or purled, and all white squares are slipped with the yarn being held on the wrong side of the work. In rows 3 & 4, all white squares are knit or purled and all black squares are slipped.

sample image for Stairsteps: a mosaic knitting chart, by Naomi Parkhurst
Stairsteps: a mosaic knitting chart, by Naomi Parkhurst
click chart to enlarge

Notes:

  • This is a stitch pattern such as might be found in a stitch dictionary. This is not a pattern for a finished object.
  • Start by casting on and then knitting a row in color A (represented by the white squares in the chart), or by having at least two rows of color A before starting the mosaic knitting.
  • Stairsteps is a multiple of 24 stitches and 12 rows.
  • The non-slipped stitches in the second row of each stripe may be either knit or purled, as desired.
  • Designers, please feel free to use this in your patterns. I’d like credit but won’t be offended if people don’t give it.
  • My blog posts and free stitch patterns are supported by subscriptions on Patreon or donations to my Paypal tip jar in the sidebar. If you appreciate my work, please consider helping out. Thanks!

Abbreviations:

  • k: knit.
  • p: purl.
  • sl 1: Slip 1 stitch purlwise with yarn in back (for sl 2, slip two stitches consecutively).
  • sl 1 wyif: Slip 1 stitch purlwise with yarn in front.

Switch to color B

Row 1 (RS): *k7, sl 2, k6, sl 2, k7 ; work from *.

Row 2 (WS): *p7, sl 2 wyif, p6, sl 2 wyif, p7 ; work from *.

Switch to color A

Row 3: *(k2, sl) × 2, k12, (sl 1, k2) × 2 ; work from *.

Row 4: *(p2, sl 1 wyif) × 2, p12, (sl 1 wyif, p2) × 2 ; work from *.

Switch to color B

Row 5: *sl 1, k10, sl 2, k10, sl ; work from *.

Row 6: *sl 1 wyif, p10, sl 2 wyif, p10, sl 1 wyif ; work from *.

Switch to color A

Row 7: *k6, sl 1, k2, sl 1, k4, sl 1, k2, sl 1, k6 ; work from *.

Row 8: *p6, sl 1 wyif, p2, sl 1 wyif, p4, sl 1 wyif, p2, sl 1 wyif, p6 ; work from *.

Switch to color B

Row 9: *k3, sl 2, k14, sl 2, k3 ; work from *.

Row 10: *p3, sl 2 wyif, p14, sl 2 wyif, p3 ; work from *.

Switch to color A

Row 11: *k1, sl 1, k8, sl 1, k2, sl 1, k8, sl 1, k1 ; work from *.

Row 12: *p1, sl 1 wyif, p8, sl 1 wyif, p2, sl 1 wyif, p8, sl 1 wyif, p1 ; work from *.

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