"+ 3" Higher Math

I am reading a stitch pattern book, and in the lace section all the patterns say something like "8 +3" Now, I know that the 8 is the number of stitches in the pattern and then you repeat it across the row. However what does the "+3" mean? At first I thought it meant making some kind of border at the edge, but if so, why would it be in a stitch pattern book where it is simply describing the pattern and has no idea what you are making? If I decide to do the pattern 3 times across a row, I would cast on, I assume, 8+8+8+3=27 stitches. But what do I do with the extra 3 when it comes time to knit?


ronhuber's picture

It usually reads multiples of 8 + 3. In other words, the pattern needs 11, 19, 27, 35 stitches. If you wanted border stitches you would add these to the numbers but have nothing to do with the 8+3

QueerJoe's picture

Yes, ronhuber is correct...8 is the number of stitches for the main repeat, while the three stitches are usually the leftover stitches necessary for the beginning or end of the rows.