Feb 20, 2017

Loom FAQs: Is It Garter, Rib, or Seed Stitch?

 

 

 

 

 

The great thing about learning the purl stitch is that when combined with the knit stitch the possibilities seem to become limitless.  There are lots of stitch patterns that only include a combination of knit and purl stitches.

But the first ones learned include garter, rib, and seed stitches.  This is when the confusion comes into play.  All 3 include the instructions of 1 of knit and 1 of purl.  Beginners tend to get this confused.  Does K1, P1 mean rows or stitches?  What makes rib and seed different?  Why does my seed stitch not look correct?  Why does my rib stitch look weird?  You mean to tell me that isn’t the garter stitch?  But that is what I was told…  It goes on and on.

Let’s begin with our basic stitches again.  I won’t go into all the knit stitches since you can find all that information in Loom FAQs:  Which Knit Stitch??.  It explains the different names and way of working the knit stitch on a knitting loom.  But I will recap the true knit stitch and the purl stitch here for convenience.

 

What is the difference between the true knit stitch and the purl stitch?

Working the true or traditional knit stitch is very similar to how a purl stitch is worked.  There really is only 1 difference.  The purl is basically a backward knit stitch so you are just working the knit stitch backward.

Now I know that statement was confusing so let’s see how each stitch is worked through the magic of photography.

Knit Stitch

In patterns when it says knit and doesn’t specify which method of knit stitch, it most likely means to use the true knit stitch.  The other methods except e-wrap are just for ease or tension purposes.  The reason that I do not include e-wrap in that statement is that e-wrap is a twisted knit stitch and will give the finished work a different look.

 

 

To work the knit stitch, bring the working yarn across the TOP of the loop on the peg.

Then bring the loom pick from the bottom, up through the loop, and catch the working yarn.

 

 

 

 

Pull the working yarn down through the loop on the peg creating a new loop.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Take the old loop off the peg and place the new loop on.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tighten the stitch.  Remember not to pull it too tight.  Just snug around a the peg.

 

 

 

 

 

Purl Stitch

There is only 1 way to work the purl stitch.  And it is not spelled pearl.  Pearls are what is not suppose to be before swine.  Purls are for knitting.

 

To work the purl stitch, bring the working yarn across the BOTTOM of the loop on the peg.  This is where the confusion between the knit and purl stitch happens.

Then bring the loom pick from the top, down through the loop, and catch the working yarn.

 

 

 

 

 

Pull the working yarn up through the loop on the peg creating a new loop.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Take the old loop off the peg and place the new loop on.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tighten the stitch.  Remember not to pull it too tight.  Just snug around a the peg.

 

 

 

 

 

 

To recap, the knit stitch is from the top, and the purl is from the bottom.

 

Knit & Purl Stitch Patterns

Now on to the different stitches created by using both knit and purl stitches.  Since I will be writing out the instructions like they are written in patterns, you can refresh your memory on how to read a pattern in Loom FAQs:  How Do I Read A Pattern?

Also if you need a refresher on how to identify a knit stitch from a purl stitch, you can read how in Loom FAQs:  Is It A Knit Or Purl?

Abbreviations

K:  Knit

P:  Purl

 

Garter Stitch

Garter Stitch

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Row 1:  K all

Row 2:  P all

Repeat rows 1 – 2

 

What is a garter ridge?

Garter stitch is always written by rows.  2 rows equals 1 garter ridge.  Therefore if a pattern says to work a certain number of garter ridges, you will need to work twice that many rows since each ridge is equal to 2 rows.

 

Rib Stitch

1×1 Rib Stitch

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stretched 1×1 Rib Stitch

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There are a few variations of the rib stitch.  1×1 rib is what I will explain.  There is also a 2×2 rib and 3×3 rib stitches.

Row 1:  *K1, P1, repeat from * to end

Repeat row 1.

When working the rib stitch, each row must have the knits on the same pegs as the knit stitches and purls on the same pegs as the purl stitches in previous row/round for each row/round.  This makes the columns of knits and purls that creates the ribbing.

 

What if I am working in the round with an odd number peg count?

You will then need to add an extra knit or purl on that last peg before starting the new round.  I like adding an extra purl since it will not be noticed as much as an extra knit.  As you can see in the pictures above, the purls like to hide between the knit stitches.

 

Which version of the rib stitch is the stretchiest?

2×2 ribbing is the stretchiest of the rib stitches which makes it the best choice for cuffs on socks.

2×2 Rib Stitch

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stretched 2×2 Rib Stitch

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Seed Stitch

Seed Stitch

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Due to the nature of seed stitch, the stitch pattern is written differently depending on if it’s a flat panel or in the round and whether it is even or odd stitch count.

 

For even number peg counts on flat panels:

Row 1:  *K1, P1, repeat from * to end

Repeat row 1.

 

For even number peg counts in the round:

Round 1:  *K1, P1, repeat to the end

Round 2:  *P1, K1, repeat to the end

Repeat rounds 1 – 2.

 

For odd number peg counts on flat panels:

Row 1:  *K1, P1, repeat from * to the next to last peg, K1

Row 2:  *P1, K2, repeat from * to the next to the last peg, P1

Repeat rows 1 – 2.

 

For odd number peg counts in the round:

Round 1:  *K1, P1, repeat to last peg, K1

Round 2:  *P1, K1, repeat to the last peg, P1

Repeat rounds 1 – 2.

 

What makes seed stitch different from rib stitch?

While the rib stitch has the columns of knits and purls, seed stitch must have the knits on top of the purls of the previous row and purls on top of the knits of the previous row.  This is why the peg count makes the instructions different between even peg counts and odd peg counts.

 

What is the difference between seed stitch and moss stitch?

The seed stitch and the moss stitch are the exact same stitch.  Just depends on where you live what this stitch is called.

 

Do any of these stitches curl?

No.  When worked correctly, all 3 of these stitches will not curl making them all great options for hat brims and borders for flat panels.

Also the back of the these stitches are the same as the front.

 

I really do hope this helps explain the differences between these 3 stitches that all involve 1 of knit and 1 of purl.  It can be confusing at first.  But carry on!  Work a swatch with each one.  This will help get it in your brain better on how each one is different.

Then you will be ready for the plethora of other stitch patterns that only use knit and purl stitches.

Happy loom knitting!

 

    Renita Harvey . 5 Comments . share this post: Share 'Loom FAQs:  Is It Garter, Rib, or Seed Stitch?' on Delicious Share 'Loom FAQs:  Is It Garter, Rib, or Seed Stitch?' on Digg Share 'Loom FAQs:  Is It Garter, Rib, or Seed Stitch?' on Facebook Share 'Loom FAQs:  Is It Garter, Rib, or Seed Stitch?' on Google+ Share 'Loom FAQs:  Is It Garter, Rib, or Seed Stitch?' on LinkedIn Share 'Loom FAQs:  Is It Garter, Rib, or Seed Stitch?' on Pinterest Share 'Loom FAQs:  Is It Garter, Rib, or Seed Stitch?' on reddit Share 'Loom FAQs:  Is It Garter, Rib, or Seed Stitch?' on StumbleUpon Share 'Loom FAQs:  Is It Garter, Rib, or Seed Stitch?' on Twitter Share 'Loom FAQs:  Is It Garter, Rib, or Seed Stitch?' on Add to Bookmarks Share 'Loom FAQs:  Is It Garter, Rib, or Seed Stitch?' on Email Share 'Loom FAQs:  Is It Garter, Rib, or Seed Stitch?' on Print Friendly

5 Comments

  • When I first saw this stitch up close (above), it reminded me of the Eiffel Tower ;) I love it!

  • I just love the design of this poncho – but do not have a loom. Could this be adapted for hand knitting on needles and if so how as I’m not to adventurous and could not be able to transform it.
    Thank you in advance

  • I have recently purchased the shorty socks kit, utilizing the KB Sock Loom 2. The written instructions for the shorty socks, indicate as follows:

    Rd 1-8: *k2 p2; repeat from * to end of round

    Rd 9 and 10 *k2, p2, repeat from * to end.

    I understand the concept of the 2×2, My question is what is the difference between the two instructions. For some reason I’m missing it. In my mind if they were the same, the instruction would have been written as Rd 1-10. Please advise. Thank you

  • The stitch pattern for the leg portion starts at Rnd 9. It is the same as the previous round, but it is there to show that it is part of the leg portion, not the cuff.

  • I’m pretty much a beginner at loom knitting, even though I’ve been loom knitting for a few years, as I work, take care of my kid etc and don’t have a lot of time to knit. Recently I started making a cowl on an oval loom for my daughter. I believe I started out using the e wrap for one row, then the purl for the next row. I thought I was using the knit stitch but looked on YouTube, and saw the knit stitch as pretty much an upside down or backward (?) Purl. I had only done a few rows of e wrap so I changed to the other knit stitch. It looks pretty good. I didn’t realize there were so many ways to do a knit stitch. Am I knitting the garter stitch? Where can I buy your looms? Do you sell any books on loom knitting?

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