The trinity stitch was the first “complicated” stitch I ever learned. Back then, I was only a beginner knitter, with only one semi-successful simple scarf in garter stitch behind me. I must say it took me a couple of days of trial and error, but I eventually got it. The basic pattern consists of blocks of 4 rows (I’ll explain in a bit), so at the beginning I helped myself with a stitch counter so that I wouldn’t lose track. A stitch counter is a tiny inexpensive device, which can be made of plastic, with a little button that you press everytime you complete a row. Basically, it helps you keep track of where you are. There are also a bunch of stitch counter apps you can download for your phone (I use Knit-Tink, which you can find on google play), which you can customize. For instance, I had set mine to 4 rows, which means that everytime I clicked for the fourth time, the counter would be resetted to 0. However, once you get to truly understand your pattern, you will not need an extra device to help you count the rows for this one. After one month of daily knitting for a scarf I made using trinity, I knew the stitch by heart and I always knew where I was at. The first week I knitted trinity, however, I thought I would never be able to get to this point!
Long story short
Row 1: k1p1k1, p3tog
Row 2: p1
Row 3: p3tog, k1p1k1
Row 4: p1
Basically, the trinity stitch consists of a series of increases and decreases. Funny enough, I never realised I was doing proper increase-decrease work until way after I was done with my project! One important thing before you get started is that the number of stitches you cast should be a multiple of 4 (so, for instance, 20, 24, 28, 32…). In row 1, the pattern reads k1p1k1 (first action) and p3tog (second action). Now, the first time I saw this, I went bananas, I had no idea what on earth it meant! First of all, K1 stands for knit one, and P1 stands for purl one. So what you have to do when you read k1p1k1 is to knit one stitch, then purl it, and then knit it without pulling it off your left needle (the video shows this more clearly -I hope). That way, out of one stitch that you pick up, you will end up with three on your right needle. In the next step, you will compensate for the extra stitches you created. So, p3tog means purl 3 together, by inserting the needle through three stitches and purling them as one. You need to do these two steps until the end of the row! Then in row 2, you just need to purl every stitch -easy as pie! In row 3, we are up for complication again, but don’t worry, it is exactly the same than we did in row 1, only that in the reverse order. So, in row 3 you begin by purling three stitches in one (p3tog), and then you do the k1p1k1 increase. If row 3 were an exact repetition of row 1, we would not have all the litte bumps making this zigzag pattern, but all the bumps would strangely stack together and form a column. To end up, in row 4 you just have to purl every stitch!
What about you? Would you like to use the trinity stitch in your projects? Drop me a line! In the next tutorial, I’ll be showing you how I made my two-colors infinity trinity stitch scarf -stay tuned!