Brioche knitting is a totally different animal than, say, regular flat knitting or even in-the-round knitting . When you're new to brioche, especially two-color brioche , things can get really confusing.
But learning how to read your brioche knitting can be really helpful, especially when you lose your place in the middle of a row or forget which row you're supposed to begin next.
Take a look at these tips and tricks to help you read your two-color brioche knitting next time you get lost.
Right side or wrong side?
Sometimes you might lost your place or get confused about where you are in the pattern. If you're working two-color brioche, take a look at your main color (often called MC). The right side is probably the side that the main color dominates. So if you're working with blue as your main color and red as your contrasting color, and one side features blue more prominently than red, then that's probably the right side.
In the brioche rib swatch pictured above, the blue-green yarn, my MC, is the prominent yarn featured in the knit columns, so I know that the swatch is showing the right side of the work.
Still not feeling confident? One easy way to know when you're working the right side is to place a stitch marker on the right side of the work when you begin.
Row A or Row B?
In flat brioche knitting when you're working back and forth in rows, one row has two parts: A and B. So for example, there's Row 1a and Row 1b. It's important to know which part of the row you're working, especially if you're following a chart.
It's easy to figure out which row you're working in two-color brioche. Check out where your working yarns are. If both yarn tails are on the same end, then you're getting ready to start a Row A. If the tails are on opposite ends of the work, then you're getting ready to start a Row B.
In the brioche rib swatch above, both of my working yarns are on the same side so I know that I need to turn the work and start a new row, which will be a Row A.
Sl1yo or brk/brp?
Usually, we're working a brk or brp when we see a sl1yo. Because both brk and brp essentially involve knitting or purling two stitches together, it's important to be able to identify the sl1yo from the previous row or round. It's really helpful, too, when you forget where you are or have to stop in the middle of a row or round.
A sl1yo will almost always be worked as a brk or brp on the next row, while a brk or brp from the previous row will almost always be worked as a sl1yo on the next row. To put it another way: you'll likely never work a sl1yo into a sl1yo.
In two-color brioche, it's simple to see which stitch is a sl1yo and which is a brk. Because the two colors alternate, a sl1yo will be two stitches on the needle that are different colors. Check out the swatch above. See how each sl1yo has both a a blue-green and pink yarn? That's how you can identify the sl1yo.
A brk or brp, though, will just look like one stitch in the same color across the row. So in the swatch above, all the brks are the lone blue-green stitches on the needle.
Because each brioche row is worked in two parts (A and B), it can be tricky to tell how many rows you have. When you count the rows, only count the stitches in one particular knit column. In other words, 2 worked rows = 1 counted row.
Two-color brioche can be scary at first, but if you can learn to read your knitting, it will make things so much easier!
Do you have any tips for identifying stitches or finding your place in two-color brioche? Share them with us in the comments!