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For the love of Japanese Short rows

April 20, 2022

For the love of Japanese Short rows

Wrap & turn, German and Japanese short rows are three techniques you can use for working short rows. For garter fabric I'm more than happy to use wrap & turn, it's quick and 'easy' (always relative of course) and the bumps that appear from the wrap are hidden within the bumps of the garter fabric.

I tried both German and Japanese when I was studying my Hand Knit Textile Design course, by far my favourite of the two is Japanese. I think one of the reasons is, I appreciate how the stitch isn't distorted when pulling the yarn over like you do on German. Ultimately it's my personal preference, and I'm a firm believer regarding any technique, if it works for you, then it works. 

You can interchange Japanese and German short rows within the same patterns without any additional calculations (as opposed to wrap & turn which do need adjustments) If you prefer one over the other, then use the one you love the most.

In the ColourMeLove pillow kit you only have to work the short row on the knit side, which I find is easier (less steps too) than working them up on the purl side, but really, neither way is hard, once you know how of course!

Using removable stitch markers, these are locked around the working yarn between the stitch you slip and the next stitch you work:

Once you've worked all the short rows (short rows is exactly what it means, you work partial rows) You'll then work across the whole row, and work in the short rows using a technique to ensure there are no holes.

I find it very satisfying working in the short rows, and seeing the shape you are creating come to life.

Cosy Beddy sock, a toe-up bulky weight sock kit also utilizes short rows for the heel turn. You only work a few each side and you will learn how to work across a short row on a knit and purl side.

As well as using removable stitch markers, you can also use 'yarn tails'. Stitch markers do have a life of their own don't you think? One thing that is always within my arms reach is yarn, even is a stitch marker isn't. In the Cosy Beddy sock videos I show the technique using yarn tails.

 You can find the Cosy Beddy sock kits here if you'd like to try out this technique. 

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