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What are Mitered Rows?


Mitered rows are simply crocheting around a corner instead of in straight rows.

So if you've edged a blanket or a scarf?

Then you've worked mitered rows!

Here are the two ends of the Chroma Story Scarf. The lower end is the one where the mitering happens and the upper end is just the end of the mitered rows.

Brightly multi-colored striped crochet scarf wrapped around a fencepost with the ends stretched out and pinned as if flying in the breeze.

Think of it kind of like building blocks.

You start with a shape (usually a square or a rectangle), and then you add on a new one in an L shape. You then continue adding L-shaped sections on until you like what you've got!

You can stack them up on the same corner, alternate corners, or even go around so that you rotate which corner you build on with each new section. The possibilities are quite literally endless!

It's a fun way to add a geometric element to an otherwise simple piece - or you can get fancy with it, too!

Chroma Story is a great example of pairing this technique with simple stitches and a self-striping yarn for dynamic results!

Smiling woman wearing a white shirt and brightly multicolored crocheted scarf while sitting next to a bunch of yellow brittlebush flowers in front of some large lightly colored rocks.

The most difficult part about mitered rows is working into the ends of the rows - which, if you've ever edged a scarf or a blanket or any other project? Well, then you've worked mitered rows! Just ... consecutive ones. In the round. See, a mitered row is simply working across one edge, turning the corner, and then working across the next edge - which is how you would begin edging something, right? The difference is that instead of continuing on around the next corner and all the way around the other sides until you join in the round, you turn and work back the same way you came! So, really, it works just like crocheting in straight rows, you just have a corner to turn, too, creating an L shape with each mitered row. Imagine for a second that you have a triangle shawl that you're working from the center out. Guess what? That's right. Mitered rows! All it means is that you're turning a corner. So. Let's have some visual aids, shall we?

Mitered Rows Option 1

Let's start small, with a square motif. It could be a few rows of your favorite stitch, it could be a granny square, it really doesn't matter. You begin with a square. (A rectangle also works nicely, but I'll come back to that in a minute.) Then, you add a few mitered rows where you work back and forth around only two sides and the same corner. Continue repeating that and you will grow your square larger with every row, it's just all happening on only that one corner and two conjoined sides. Like so:

An image illustrating one method of adding mitered rows onto a square, all build out on the same corner and two sides.

If you'd like to see it in crocheted form, here's an example from a mitered square class I've taught in person a few times. It begins with a few rows in single crochet and then you change colors to add on mitered rows using other basic stitches (sc, hdc, dc, tr).

A small crocheted square motif in white and gray sitting on a gray wooden table with red carnations and baby's breath flowers nearby.

I also added an edging in single crochet onto it - which was, you guessed it! More mitered rows! Just worked all the way around. If you're interested in learning how to make this square, I'd be delighted to walk you through it in a private lesson! The pattern isn't currently published, but it's on my list for a future online class. Be sure you're on my mailing list to be the first to know when new classes are released!

Mitered Rows Option 2

Another way you can work mitered rows is to alternate opposite corners. You'd want to do this with changing colors, most likely, for a scrappy or stashbusting kind of project. It might look something like this:

An image illustrating a second way to add mitered rows onto a small square by alternating opposite corners with each addition.

This is how you get those log cabin projects, by the way!

It's a quilting thing, originally, but you can absolutely do it with crocheting. I keep telling myself I need to design a log cabin style blanket pattern, too... I just haven't done it yet!

Mitered Rows Option 3

One more variation on our simple square starting point would be to rotate around the corners in a circular order. Again, you'd probably want to do this by changing colors. ... Unless, of course, you got smart and figured out a way to begin the next L shape withOUT cutting your yarn, like with a nice self-striping yarn kind of like the Urth Yarns I used for the Chroma Story Scarf... Oooh, wheels are turning, y'all! Anyway. Back on task.

Here's what this last variation might look like:

In image illustrating adding mitered rows onto a small square by adding onto corners in a rotational sequence.

That one might be kind of trippy, right!? But I also think it would be fun. So, let's have a look at how these mitered rows work in our Chroma Story Scarf, shall we?

An image illustrating adding mitered rows onto a long rectangle by stacking them up on the same corner and two sides.

Instead of a square, we begin with a really loooooong rectangle (scarf, right?) and then when we're close to our target length, THAT is when we start adding on mitered rows, which add both a tiny bit more length as well as additional width. In this design, you approximately double the width of your original strip of fabric. Can you see those mitered rows here??

Detail image of one end of a brightly multi-colored striped crocheted scarf made with mitered rows.

They just build out on that one corner and stretch allllllll the way down the length of the scarf! So what do you think? Are you imagining all the possibilities for stashbusting with mitered squares? I know I am! You could totally start with a small rectangle and build out an entire full sized blanket if you wanted to, too. In fact, I may revisit this design in the future and turn it into exactly that... I mean, I already made a cowl! Have you not heard? Yes, the scarf has a little sister! I'll be sharing more about her soon. In the meantime, if you'd like another look at me talking about mitered squares with some uncooperative bits of paper instead of nicely static graphics, I made a video for you!

All right. I think that's QUITE enough of me rambling about mitered rows for now! How are you feeling about it, though? Does it make more sense now? Is it sparking ideas? Or are you thinking about giving the Chroma Story Scarf a go??

If you have ANY questions at all, please don't hesitate to comment below.

And if you want to have a brainstorming session for stashbusting your way through some mitered rows, I'm down for that, too! You can book 1:1 Zoom lessons with me here. Happy mitering, y'all!

Smiling woman wearing a white sweater and a brightly multi-colored striped crocheted scarf with a yellow flower behind her ear while she sits on some large lightly colored rocks next to a blooming brittlebush.


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