Japanese Notation (Garment Notation) displays abbreviated knitting instructions on a visual diagram of your garment piece. It can be used for increases, decreases or short row shaping.
An instruction of 1-2-9 means (decrease, increase or hold) 1 stitch every 2 rows 9 times.
If the drawing doesn’t say increase, decrease or hold, how do you know what to do?
Study the schematic.
Notice in this example this pattern includes 3 sizes and is showing the shaping instructions for all the sizes on one schematic.
Start by highlighting the numbers for your size
- The first armhole bind off starts at Row 100
- There are 44 needles in work
- Bind off 5 stitches
(notice that there is only 1 number – bind off 5 stitches for all sizes)
- Armhole shaping:
- Decrease 1 stitch every row 4 times
- Decrease 1 stitch every 2 rows 2 times
- Decrease 1 stitch every 3 rows 1 time
- Knit with no shaping to Row 138
- On Row 138 begin the neckline shaping: Bind off 4 stitches
- Neckline Decreases:
- skip the first instruction for the smallest size
- Decrease 3 stitches every 2 rows, 1 time
- Decrease 2 stitches every 2 rows, 1 time
- Decrease 1 stitch every 3 rows, 1 time
- Knit with no shaping to Row 150
- Starting on Row 150 work shoulder shaping:
- Decrease or short row 4 stitches every other row 3 times
- Decrease or short row 5 stitches every other row 2 times
- Skip the last instruction for the smallest size
The schematic will indicate where to decrease and increase to create your shape.