Mary Beth Temple

Mosaic Knitting: Reading Charts

Mary Beth Temple
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Duration:   10  mins

Mosaic Knitting is a fun slipped stitch technique that can be used in any project, from baby hats and blankets to sweaters and socks. In this video, Mary Beth Temple explains the basics of how to read traditional mosaic charts.

This technique was first created by Barbara Walker in the 1970s. The stitch patterns are created by using two colors of yarn, switching yarn every two rows. Because the mosaic stitch patterns have slipped stitches, only one color is needed at a time.

One interesting feature of traditional mosaic knitting charts is that they can be used to work the stitch pattern in both garter stitch and Stockinette stitch. The same row is worked twice and on Wrong Side rows the stitches can either be knit or purled to create the fabric you want.


Mary Beth reviews a popular mosaic knitting chart. The first row is worked from right to left. The second row is worked from left to right. The first box on the right side of the chart will indicate which color of yarn to use. For example, on Row 1, the dark color is used. This means that all the dark-colored boxes will be knit, with the light-colored boxes being slipped. This is repeated on Row 2. It’s important to remember that on the even-numbered (Wrong Side) rows, the slipped stitches are being slipped with the yarn in front (to the Wrong Side of the fabric).

As Mary Beth mentions in the video, once you have the basics of reading mosaic charts, you can knit hundreds of beautiful stitch patterns using this technique.

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