A New Spin on Modular Knitting
Modular knitting has been around for a long time and yet is very popular today. Patented in 1948 by Virginia Woods Bellamy, the technique used to be called "Number Knitting." It has seen many a fresh application since the 1940s, including the Chevron Mesh Scarf designed by Angela Tong, and published nearly 70 years later in our Spring/Summer issue of Knit.wear.
What is Modular Knitting? We can learn by taking a closer look at the Chevron Mesh Scarf. The chevron pattern is created by knitting a series of parallelograms—each connected, but worked separately. The foundation for each piece is created by picking up stitches along the slipped stitch edge as well as the live stitches from two previous pieces. After the first two sections, every new section has a foundation of two other joined parts. Pretty easy once you get the hang of it!
As you can see from the assembly diagram at left, the consistent and mirrored shapes of the parallelogram pieces form a straight scarf with alternating points on each end. The color scheme shows how you can knit with one color at a time and achieve the chevron appearance. The red lines indicate where stitches are picked up while the green lines show live stitches that are placed on a holder after that section is worked. The arrows indicate the direction of the knitting and each piece is numbered for clarity.
When beginning a new section of scarf, you will first pick up and knit 10 stitches along the straight, not decreased, edge of the previously worked section, indicated with a red line (if you're working section 3, you pick up stitches along section 2; if you're working section 28, you pick up stitches along section 27, etc) like this:
And then you work the 10 held stitches from two sections previous (again, if you're working section 3, you will use the held stitches from section 1 and so forth):
What makes this scarf even easier is that, for most of the project, you're going to be working the same two sections over and over but with varying colors to create the chevron look. The very beginning and the very end have slightly different shapes, but those are more like starting and finishing lines—when things switch up at the end, it means you're done! Wouldn't this be fun in an ombré effect or rainbow?!
This construction also will allow you to make your scarf as long or short as you want. I personally love the extra-long length of the scarf that Angela made for the magazine, but if you want a tamer accessory, cut out a few sections and work that last piece (the finish line) after any of the odd numbered sections! We offer a kit for the project right here so you can get started on your own Chevron Mesh Scarf!