Martin Storey KAL 2016: No Sew Garter Trim!

This is the second Martin Storey blanket (or afghan if you prefer) KAL I have knitted and I must admit I quite enjoyed this one. It could be because I chose to knit it up in my favourite colour, these lovely shades of blue………..

Martin Storey KAL 2016 Blue shades on a chair

The blanket is knitted in Rowan Pure Wool Worsted, a beautiful 100% super wash wool which comes in 60 different shades plus 8 variegated shades. The KAL pattern comes in 4 different colourways that Martin Storey has chosen for but with so many shades you can choose your own if you so wish.

From the start I decided that I was only going to knit 25 squares in total rather than 48. I didn’t need another large blanket and thought one just big enough to cover my lap and legs was ample. The finished size of mine is 120cm x 120 cm (47″ x 47″) which works just great. The other issue was all that sewing up……. I just couldn’t face it again. And then there was the garter trim to knit and sew on…..more sewing! With that in mind I was determined to work out a way to knit a no-sew garter stitch trim rather than sew it on afterwards. So, here’s what I came up with…….

Garter Edge Trim

It’s the same garter trim pattern used for Martin Storey’s blanket KAL but with a couple of tweaks. Here’s how I did it……

Using yarn A and a long circular needle, with right side facing and starting at the right hand corner, pick up and knit 40-42 stitches per square using the long tail of the yarn like in the long tail cast on method………

Pick up and knit with long tail

Continue to pick-up and knit stitches until you reach the left hand corner. For the length of my long tail from the ball of yarn, I measured out a length of yarn that was 3 times the length of my 5 squares and started to pick up and knit the stitches from here. My blanket is 5 squares by 5 squares in size. Make sure you pick up and knit with the long tail of the yarn and not the yarn from the ball.

When you reach the left hand corner, go back to the right hand corner and cast on 12 stitches using the knit cast on method and the yarn from the ball. Martin Storey’s pattern states to cast on 13 stitches for the garter trim but as you will not need 1 stitch to sew to the main blanket I decided to cast on 12……….

Cast in 12 stitches at rh corner

Now, proceed as follows: * k11 (back to the picked-up stitches), then knit together the next stitch and the first stitch that was cast on with the long tail cast on method through the back of the loops…………

K11 k2tog through back of stitches

Next row: Turn the work. Slip the first stitch purl wise and then knit to the end.

Turn and slip first st purl wise

Join in yarn B and repeat from * changing yarn shade every 2 rows.

No sew Garter Edge in process

When working with two different shades of yarn don’t cut the yarn when changing from one shade to the other but bring the yarn you have finished working with to the front of the knitting and the yarn you are about to work with towards the back. This will ensure you produce a lovely neat edge. (For a link to a more detailed description see below).

You will see that it is slightly different to the patterns garter stitch trim with a raised stitch nearest the blanket squares however, I like it and I am more than happy with this no-sew knitted on trim.

No sew Garter Edge in process

And, when you have finished knitting the trim you are almost done; just a few ends to sew in. Yippee……………..

Corner of no-sew garter edge trim

Another change I made was to the Lace Heart square. I was quite happy with it as I was knitting it up but then when I laid it next to the other squares I didn’t like it; it looked like it was the wrong way up compared to the other squares………..

My Lace heart sq RS

So, I decided to turn it over with the background of the square in stocking stitch and the heart side in reverse stocking stitch.

Lave Heart square reversed

As I knitted less squares I had to design my own layout which I did as I went along. I like symmetry, as you can see………….

Martin Storey KAL 2016 Hanging

So, there it is ………my version of Martin Storey’s KAL 2016. I hope Mr Storey is not too upset that I messed around with his design so much? Of course, you can knit the pattern exactly as it is and the way Martin Storey intended it to be.

If you would like to join in with this KAL click on the link below for all the relevant information including links to all the patterns, Ravelry, You Tube videos, tutorials, etc. Don’t forget to login otherwise you won’t be able to download all the free patterns.

Martin Storey KAL 2016

And, my previous post on this KAL, which also includes instructions for changing and carrying up yarn at the edge of work, click on the link below…..

Previous post on the Martin Storey KAL 2016

If you are already taking part let me know how you are getting on by leaving a comment below, I would love to know!

Thank so much for reading my blog.

Esther x

Hanging Blanket 2

33 thoughts on “Martin Storey KAL 2016: No Sew Garter Trim!

  1. Hi. Hope you are still watching this. I have just started your border and love how you have done it. One question about working around each side. Did you do each one as a separate piece and join at corners.

    • Hi Nancy, Each border is knitted on…no sewing at all. Check out the photos in the blog post and you will see that I pick up and knit along the borders after the first bored is done.

  2. Love this edging. No trouble at all to do, no sewing on and looks really smart. Thank you for the instructions, really clear to follow.

  3. Hi Esther,
    I love the idea of not having to sew in the trim! I have never used the long tail cast on method and have just mastered it from youtube clips. Once I have cast on 252 stitches using this method for the short edge of my blanket I now need to understand how to pick up the stitches. I feel like I am missing a step. Can you help please?
    Tenacious Janet 🙂

    • Hi Janet, I think you misunderstood the instructions. First, you need to take your ball of yarn and measure out a length of yarn similar to what you would do when you cast on using the long tail method. I suggest this should be about 3x the length of the edge of the blanket that you are about to add the trim to. Now you go to the right hand corner of this edge and using this long tail of yarn pick up and knit 40-42 stitches per square. You will finish picking up and knitting stitches when you reach the left hand corner. Now, go back to the right hand corner and using the yarn that is attached to the ball cast on 12 stitches using the knit cast on method. Then continue with my instructions for knitting on the edge as you go.

      I hope this helps to make it a little clearer.

      Esther 🙂

  4. Thank you for this. I reposted it so I wouldn’t lose it and have done it all backwards relying on fsulty memory. K2tog and K1 knitwise and taking the used yarn to the back. I have knitted the border on two squares now. So it would show badly if I changed now.

  5. I didn’t knit the blanket, but I got all of the patterns stored on my computer. Why? Because I fell and broke my little finger and since then it has been operated twice and I can’t knit since then and it will take a while untill my finger can function again I’m afraid. I miss my knitting needles a lot and so I store beautifull patterns now for when I can knit again. So this blanket is standing on my to do list 🙂

    • And this really does make it so much easier, Jacqui. Much more so than knitting a very, long skinny edge, wondering if you have the correct length and then sewing it on. I prefer knit it on and your done!

  6. Thank you for sharing this!! Really was not looking forward to doing so much sewing. After putting all the squares together, I will appreciate the medicinal act of knitting the edge 🙂

    • So pleased I have been able to help, Gailann. I really did enjoy knitting the edge like this….I’m now thinking of other ways I can use this method…????

  7. I am taking part too I am just about keeping up. I will probably follow pattern as not sure I can follow your instructions although haven’t really tried. I am using the greys and quite pleased so far, not sure about sewing up never done anything like this before hope it’s not too difficult

    • I’m sure you’re doing just great Carole and if you have managed to knit all those different patterns you would have no trouble at all following my instructions for the no-sew knit-on garter trim. It’s always easier to follow these types of instructions when you’ve got your knitting in front of you and your knitting the instructions and comparing your results to the pictures…..sometimes it just doesn’t make sense when you just read through it. If you’re not sure how to sew everything together contact me again and I will help you if I can.

  8. thank you for sharing, I was dreading sewing on all that trim. this is a great option for me! I can’t wait to finish putting the squared together so I can try this.

    • Roberta, you will just love this knit-on trim especially if you really can’t face sewing it on afterwards. It also saves so much time too!

  9. I will try the no-sew trim..thanks Esther., this gives me the motivation to finish the blanket. Your colours are stunning,, what colours are they?

  10. I am late to the party and have just found the KAL, but I am pleased to bits with your tutorial. Thanks so much for sharing it! The blanket is stunning and your mod suggestions are perfect.

    • Thank you Maureen! Sometimes being late to the party is a wise move…….now you can try out all the time saving tricks, like Caroline Annie’s suggestions and my no-sew garter edge 🙂

  11. Looks lovely. To save sewing problems, I started each square casting on with my main colour and knitting one row. Then I changed colour and knitted per pattern, then after pattern completed finished with one row main and cast off in main. When squares completed, lay squares into final pattern, then sew each column joining them with main colour. Much neater when joining matching colour. When columns complete, take first strip, pick up stitches along the length, turn, cast of all. Repeat with each strip, then again sewing together is really neat when its all one colour. Will be doing edge your way Neat. If preferred squares can be crocheted together. Good luck!

    • Thanks for the great tips on how to do most of the blanket sewing free, Caroline. I will definitely try your ideas out with the next blanket!

  12. Have really enjoyed this KAL. Been really fun!! I agree with you about the lace hearts!!
    Not looking forward to the sewing part!?

    • I guess some people do like the sewing part….but not you and me Sharon. Maybe you could try my no-sew knit-on garter trim; no sewing at all!

  13. This is really lovely! I am also participating in the KAL, with the green colors. I’m not quite caught up on the squares, but already worrying about the border and also wanted to avoid so much sewing. I was thinking along same lines as you, but hadn’t thought of that initial row along edge — that’s great and much neater than my trial. One question — did you go down a needle size on the border, per Storey instructions? Does that just sort of tighten things up a bit?

    • Thanks Roberta! I used 4mm needles as per the instructions which gives a nice firm trim; I think it would be quite stretchy with 4.5mm. I also love my version of the trim….it is so much neater than sewing on 🙂

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