How to add a Repeat or Border to a Stitchmastery chart

A little while ago I wrote gave some examples of how ‘Borders’ and ‘Repeats’ could be added to a Stitchmastery chart (Repeats and Borders on a Stitchmastery chart) and the differences that these made to both the visual appearance of the chart and to the written instructions that Stitchmastery automatically generates. The bottom line: if you want the generated written instructions to match a Border on the chart then be sure to add both a Repeat and a Border to the chart.

Rectangular Repeats

At the time I didn’t explain the mechanics of how to add the Repeat or Border using Stitchmastery. This post will give a quick guide to how to do that. Our starting point is this chart;-

I’d like to add a Repeat / Border to include all the stitches in columns 7 to 18 inclusive. In order to do this all those stitches need to first be ‘selected’. The easiest way to do this is to use the Arrow Select tool combined with the Shift key.

The Arrow Select tool can be found both on the main tool bar and on the mini tool bar at the top of the Palette (both locations circled in red in the screen shot below).

1) Select the tool and the cursor now changes to an Arrow.

2) Now begin selecting a rectangular area of the chart by first selecting a stitch at one of the corners of the rectangle. Here I have selected the stitch circled in green. It is shaded light grey to indicate the selection.

3) Now hold down the Shift key and select the stitch at the opposite corner of the rectangle to the first stitch. See the screenshot below where the first selected stitch is circled in green and the second selected stitch is circled in blue. All the stitches in the rectangle defined by those two corners are now selected and are shaded light grey to indicate the selection.

4) Having selected all the stitches the Repeat can now be added. To so this select Repeat > Place Stitches in Selection into a Repeat from the main menu (shown in the screenshot above).

5) In the Add a Repeat dialog you can configure the details of the Repeat and of an optional Border that can also be drawn around the selected stitches so that a visual Border matches the Repeat in the written instructions.


In this example I have chosen to add a ‘Round Bracket’ repeat with a ‘5 times’ qualifier so that, for example, row 1 of the written instructions now reads;-

K1, ssk, k3, yo, (k1, yo, k3, k2tog, k1, ssk, k3, yo) 5 times, k1, yo, k3, k2tog, k1.

The effect of adding the Repeat on the instructions is highlighted in red. In addition I have also opted to add a Border to the selected stitches. The ‘Work 5 times’ text will be displayed in the key.

Note that nearly all of the chosen options in the Add a Repeat dialog are editable at a later point. The exception is the ‘type’ of the Repeat which cannot be edited later. If you add a ‘Round Bracket’ and then decide that you would rather have an ‘Asterisk’ repeat then all the repeats need to be removed and re-added to make this change.

After you have pressed OK in the Add a Repeat dialog, the changes will be made and the chart and written instructions will now look like this;-Lace chart with Border and Repeat


Non-rectangular repeats

What if the repeat that you want to add is not rectangular? There are several ways to handle this situation.

An important point to note is that Repeats are actually modelled on a row by row basis. Hence a Repeat can be added in stages, that is either row by row, or even better in a set of rows at a time.

Another important point is that ALL stitches that belong in a Repeat on any given row must be added to a Repeat at the SAME time. If you change your mind about which stitches in any given row belong in a Repeat then you would need to remove the Repeat for that row from the chart and start over.

Let’s add a Repeat to this chart;-


First I want to add a Repeat to all stitches in columns 1 to 7 but only for rows 1 to 5. Hence I select those stitches using the Arrow Select tool combined with the Shift key as described previously. This time I want the Repeat to be worked 3 times.


Now I want to extend the Repeat to include all the stitches in columns 4 to 10 for row 6 to 10 only. As before I select the stitches and select Repeat > Place Stitches in Selection into a Repeat to bring up the Add a Repeat dialog. To be consistent and also to have a ‘valid’ chart, I set the Repeat to be worked 3 times. This time, however, instead of adding a NEW Border I use the existing Border.


And this is the result;-


Editing a repeat(s)

I mentioned above that if you changed your mind about the type of a Qualifier or the number of times that a repeat is worked it is possible to change this later. In order to do this you have to be able to select the Repeats. You cannot do this by directly clicking on them as there is no visual element for a repeat in a chart that can be clicked on. Instead you should use the select menu on the main toolbar. In the screenshot below the select menu is outlined in red. There are three menu options for selecting repeats. In the case of this chart the best option is to use Select All Repeats will select all the repeats in the one chart. Note how each selected Repeat is shown with a thin black outline and that each row has a separate Repeat even though we added the stitches in two blocks. This is because the Repeats are used to generate Row by Row written instructions and are actually modelled on a Row by Row basis.


Now I can select Repeat > Edit Repeat(s) from the main menu. In the Edit Repeat(s) dialog (Yes, the title of the dialog is wrong!) I can either remove the qualifier, add one if there wasn’t on there previously or change the existing one. In my case I am going to add multiple values to qualifier so that written instructions are generated for three different sizes.


Select OK and this is the result;-


Note the key text for the Border is not automatically updated. You need to directly edit this yourself;-


Removing repeats

To remove repeats, select either a chart or a row or several rows depending on what repeat(s) you would like to remove and then select Repeat > Remove all Repeats from Stitches in Selection from the main menu;-





9 thoughts on “How to add a Repeat or Border to a Stitchmastery chart”

  1. Thank you so very much! This is exactly what I was searching for. I could not figure out how to create (highlight) my chart repeats and now I do! Thanks again.

  2. I’m a newbie in using Stitchmastery.

    I have written instructions that I want to chart. The ‘repeat until x number of stitches remain’ seems impossible to recreate in a chart. I can do the math and say repeat 44 times (or x number of times). Is that the only option?

  3. I want to outline or highlight my repeat within the chart, excluding edge stitches needed for sample.
    On a Mac, I can select the area, but it will not then outline as on the video.
    I am not filling in the number of repeats or any details in the box: this is irrelevant! I just want the repeat outlined. People can use the pattern on any number of stitches, these are pattern ideas for people to play with.
    How to highlight the repeat on a Mac please?

    1. It sounds like you want to add a border rather than a repeat. The short version – select your stitches, open the Border option in the main menu, and “Place Border on Selected Stitches”. You can then choose for your border to go on All Sides or just top/bottom/right/left as suits. A line will be added around the stitches and a corresponding entry will be added to your key.

      You can click twice on the word “Border” in the key if you want to change it to something else, or click on the symbol to select the border itself and then return to Border in the main menu and click Edit Border Properties if you want to change the colour, width of the line, placement of the line etc.

      There are more details and links to relevant tutorials in this article:

  4. I am trying to add multiple borders to a raglan sleeve chart to show several sizes on the same chart. Do you have a tutorial that would help? Thank you!

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