In the past I have been scornful of stitch markers, “they’re for wimps” not for “serious experienced knitters like me” I would laugh back at the pattern instructions. But I was deluding myself. Serious experienced knitters recognise when a bit of help from a silly little thing like a stitch marker could save them several wasted hours going back and reknitting.
It was easy to delude myself as I wasn’t doing the sort of patterns that you need to keep track of such as cables or lace. Intasia, at least the big chart stuff tends to keep track of itself as all you have to do is count some rows and compare it to the number of stitches in a particular colour on a chart – spotting mistakes is quite easy.
Also instructions that say “place marker” to aid decreasing or increasing usually found me to lazy to go and find a safety pin or whatever and I would just rely on counting.
What has brought a change of heart in me is firstly knitting an occasional cable repeat in a wrap (Lilly Chin reversible wrap) and discovering that Rowan Kidsilk Haze is a pain to frog as the rows stick together. Secondly I’m knitting a lace based jumper for myself and finding it hard to keep track of the stitches. I had been counting from the edge, but the edges have started decreasing for the armholes and I keep forgetting how many stitches I’ve decreased by !
To begin with I’ve been using waste yarn to mark stitches with, its cheap and I don’t have to go on a big search to find it, but the jumper I’m knitting is in black and the fibres from the waste yarn (red) show up significantly where they have shed. So I may have a go at making my own little markers as I have some wire left over from some wire knitting and a few beads and things from other projects.
I will no longer scoff at instructions to use stitch markers, I have learned my lesson…the hard way…