The increases that you use can both add beauty to the shawl and, of course, create shaping! Read through this list and try them out on swatches if you haven’t worked them before. You might just find one you love!
Let’s go through a few increases and their benefits.
These are the most common type of increases. Here are a few:
This is probably the most popular increase!
We’ve given you a tutorial on how to work it as well. This can also be called a “bar” increase because it, well, creates a bar. This can be helpful in certain designs and it can be disruptive in others.
There are 4 ways to work this depending on the stitches both before and after the YO.
We show you all 4 ways in our tutorial!
We give you details on how to make both the M1 and the M1R. Make one increases require you to use the running thread from the previous row. Given this, it might not be the best choice if you’re working stripes or your yarn has long color changes.
The difference in the left- and right-leaning has to do with the direction that you pick up that running thread.
While less common than their single-increase sisters, double increases can help shape the shawl differently because it adds stitches at a faster rate. The shawls worked with them are wider and shallower.
A few common double increases include:
A DYO is a larger eyelet. Here are both so you can see the difference.
We actually have 2 tutorials on the DYO!
You might also be thinking of M1 M1 as well. I tend to dislike working two M1s in a row because it can create a tight row since you add stitches by working into 2 running threads. This can be especially true if you knit more-tightly.
Truthfully, I’m also not a fan of the KFB KFB in a shawl. The increase creates bars and the two sides aren’t symmetrical. But, I wanted to show it here for completeness.
To work it, just make two KFBs in a row.
I love this double increase because you only get a single eyelet. It seems like the best of both worlds. And for whatever reason, it seems to be a quicker one for me to work.
Here’s our tutorial on the KYOK.
Can I Substitute?
You sure can!
I’d recommend that you stick with another increase of the same amount of stitches. So, one single increase for another, or one double increase for another. This is important because both the shape and the stitch patterns will be assuming that rate of change. And, you should either ask the designer (first choice) or work a swatch (alternative) to see how it works with the stitch patterns.
You’ll likely have ones that you like or don’t like. For me, I’m not a fan of working an M1. I’ll often replace them with lifted increases. Both are less-visible and both have a right-leaning and a left-leaning version.
This is just a sampling of what’s in our Shawls PDF!
About the Instructor: Jody Richards
Jody is the founder and lead editor of Knotions. She loves poring over stitch dictionaries and trying out new stitches. And while she likes all things crafting (well ok, except that one thing), yarn crafts are her true love (and she has the stash to prove it).
She’s a serial starter-of-projects and has a serious problem with finishing things without a deadline.
And don’t get her talking about hand-dyed yarns. You’ve been warned.