Tournament of Stitches Mystery Make-Along with Marly Bird

Time for the first ever Tournament of Stitches Mystery Make-Along. For those of you who joined us for the Game Day make-along back in February, you know the great time we had making a mystery project together. We learned a LOT from our first attempt at a mystery make-along and are using what we learned to make this one better!

Things will be run a little different for this mystery make-along so be sure to read the full post to know how it works and how to participate.

Marly Bird's Tournament of Stitches Mystery Make-Along

This time around we are extending the amount of time you have to complete each section. There is a pattern for the knitters and the crocheters because we know you are both here! All skill levels will be covered so please be sure to join in the fun!

What is the Tournament of Stitches Mystery Make-Along:

The Tournament of Stitches mystery make-along is a great way for us to come together as a community and make something that is the same _but different_. Sound confusing? I hope not. Think of the old, “choose your own adventure” stories you probably read as a kid, this will be similar to that.

Your first choice is whether you want to make a shawl or a cowl. Once you decide that, you will follow along the options for that piece. Each round there will be a set of clues for you to choose and each clue will have the concentration level attached (see chart below) so you can decided what kind of concentration level you want to use for that week. Once you select the clue, simply work up the pattern for that clue then wait for the next round to start.

On the next round, you will have another set of clues to choose from and you can select which one you want to follow for that week. The cool thing is that I’ve written the pattern in such a way that you can mix and match concentration levels so you don’t have to stick to the same one each round. After four rounds you will have a finished shawl or cowl that was a mystery to you (and to me) prior to you making it.

Concentration Levels:

Concentration levels are based on how much concentration you need to put into the pattern as you are working it. We have broken them out as the following:

  • “Social” Knitter/Crocheter–This is a knitter/crocheter who might be working on the project at a knit club, watching TV or talking with family and friends while working. These clues are made up of stitches that are easy to remember the repeat and don’t require carrying the pattern with you.
  • “Netflix and Chill” Knitter/Crocheter–This is a knitter/crocheter who might be watching something more detailed that they want to pay attention to but aren’t so involved in what they are doing that they don’t want to keep track of what they are working on. These clues will have slightly more detailed stitch patterns but you would still be able to hold a conversion, with one person, or watch a light TV program.
  • “Smooth Jazz” Knitter/Crocheter–This is a knitter/crocheter who can have some noise in the background but not something that they need to focus on. When you listen to music, think smooth jazz, you can hear the music but you don’t really need to be listening to the words to know what is going on. I use smooth jazz because some heavy rock might not be the best thing for your nerves! These clues will have stitch patterns that are more beefy than the first two groups of clues and will require some thinking about.
  • “Be Quiet, I’m Knitting/Crocheting” Knitter/Crocheter–This is a knitter/crocheter who will need to have a quite house so that they can count and make sure that they are following the stitch pattern correctly. These clues will have more complicated stitch patterns and will need more counting as you work them. You will need the most focus for these clues.

When is the Tournament of Stitches Mystery Make-Along:

The make-along schedule is this:

Week 1–March 15

Week 2–March 22

Week 3–March 31

Week 4–April 5

If you want to have your project entered for a chance to win a prize (to be determined) it must be completed and posted to the Marly’s Minions FB Group by Midnight, April 6, 2018.

How do I Participate in the Tournament of Stitches Mystery Make-Along:

To participate in the Tournament of Stitches Mystery Make-Along you will need to go to the Marly’s Minions Facebook GROUP and there you can RSVP for the event. By marking that you are going to be joining us you will get notifications when new clues are posted.

How Do I get the Clues for Each Round:

We will release the clues for each round in a blog post the day of the event (to be determined…enter URL Here when we have it) You will also get a notification from the FB Group for when we post the clues for each round AND (we learned this last time) we will have one dedicated thread in the group for each clue in each round.

So should you have a question, you only need to find that thread in the fb group and ask it there so that our team of testers and moderators and admin can help you.

Sounds Great, What are We Making:

So traditionally, when it is a mystery make-along it is truly a mystery from start to finish. This one is slightly different in that I want you to know what the final project is so that you can decide which path of clues you want to follow, but the mystery is that you still don’t have any idea what it looks like.

As I mentioned before, you will need to decide if you are making the shawl or cowl before you get started, then in each round you select with concentration level clue you want to follow that week. Remember, you can mix and match concentration levels each round so if you select “social” in round one, you can still choose “be quiet, I’m knitting/crocheting” in round 2.

What Materials Do I Need:

There is nothing worse than running out of yarn for a project, right? With that in mind, we have decided to be cautious and suggest a larger amount of yarn for this project than you might use. But, we want to make sure that no matter which clue you choose to follow you will not run out of yarn by the time you are at the end of the make-along.

Chic Sheep by Marly Bird Yarn

On that note, we suggest the following materials:

  • 20 oz of Worsted weight yarn
    • For example
      • Red Heart Stripes (4 balls-236 yds per ball) or,
      • Red Heart Ombre (2 balls-482 yds per ball) or,
      • Chic Sheep by Marly Bird (5 balls-186 yds per ball) does not have to all be the same color…could do multiple colors should you choose
  • US size 9 knitting needles (24” or longer circulars)
  • Size I or J crochet hook
  • Stitch Markers (Regular & Removable)
  • Scissors
  • Yarn Needle
  • Keep track of your clue choices with the printable brackets here

What Can I Win:

Red Heart has been so wonderful to again offer prizes throughout the event. We will have a winner each week. Winners will be selected by you posting a photo of your finished section in the correct thread by the midnight deadline each Friday.

????????!Get LINKS TO ALL THE Patterns below AFTER THEY ARE RELEASED! ????????

Tournament of Stitches Crochet Clues

Crochet Gauge:

12 dc = 4″ (10 cm)

5 rows = 2.5″ (6.35 cm)

Please make a note: I don’t say this very often but gauge isn’t terribly important for this project. HOWEVER, if you happen to get a larger gauge than is listed you might run out of yarn; or if you get a smaller gauge you might end up with a project that is just too small. Therefore, it is always best to get gauge or at least be really, really, really close ????

Weekly Crochet Shawl Clues:

Week 1 Crochet Shawl Clues

Week 2 Crochet Shawl Clues

Week 3 Crochet Shawl Clues

Week 4 Crochet Shawl Clues

Weekly Crochet Cowl Clues:

Week 1 Crochet Cowl Clues

Week 2 Crochet Cowl Clues

Week 3 Crochet Cowl Clues

Week 4 Crochet Cowl Clues

Tournament of Stitches Knitting Clues







Knitting Gauge:

18 sts  = 4″ (10 cm) in stockinette stitch

Please make a note: I don’t say this very often but gauge isn’t terribly important for this project. HOWEVER, if you happen to get a larger gauge than is listed you might run out of yarn; or if you get a smaller gauge you might end up with a project that is just too small. Therefore, it is always best to get gauge or at least be really, really, really close ????

Weekly Knitting Shawl Clues:

Week 1 Knitting Shawl Clues

Week 2 Knitting Shawl Clues

Week 3 Knitting Shawl Clues

Week 4 Knitting Shawl Clues

Weekly Knitting Cowl Clues:

Week 1 Knitting Cowl Clues

Week 2 Knitting Cowl Clues

Week 3 Knitting Cowl Clues

Week 4 Knitting Cowl Clues


Need Help? Here are the links to get pattern support!

Note: You must be a member of the Marly’s Minions FB group to access! 

Week 1:

Knit Cowl

Knit Shawl

Crochet Cowl

Crochet Shawl

Introduction Video:

Because I know all of this can be clear as mud, I will do a FB Live in the Marly’s Minions group next week (time to be determined…I’m traveling to the Red Heart home office so I will have to where I can fit it in) walking you through this entire make-along and answer any questions you might have. Hopefully, I will be able to walk you through a hypothetical shawl or cowl.

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  1. Chris Lopez says:

    Omg! This sounds wonderful and so much fun! I worked a job once where we were forced to “compete” during March Madness becsuse our supervisor was a big basketball fan. When I saw you talking about a March Madness event I just knew you’d come up with something awesome! You did not disappoint. Can’t wait!!

    • Marly Bird says:

      Oh so sorry to hear that! You should have to do a bracket because someone else likes it! We are trying to make it fun with March Madness going on right now but we didn’t want to make it too competitive. Can’t wait for everyone to get started and see what is made!

      • Chris Lopez says:

        Yes we had to compete in terms of how much work we produced. Everytime we completed something we had to put numbers on this huge spreadsheet for the whole office to see. It was a job I worked after retiring from my government job and it was pretty awful in all respects. This event is exciting!!

  2. SidraG says:

    This sounds so much fun. Do I have the time??? Participating already in 2 KALs. But YES count me in!

    • Marly Bird says:

      We sure hope that you will join us! The clues will be on the blog for you to access any time that you can work on it and there will be a PDF for purchase of the pattern after the event that you can get in Ravelry.

  3. Luann Wright says:

    Looks fun…I really like the different level of each section. I have a question, I have some stash Yarn I bought from a little Bird, it doesn’t have a label, could I weigh it then add the ounces together to get the correct amount of Yarn? Have 4 or five balls..

    • Marly Bird says:

      Yes you can weigh the yarn to see how much you have and add them together to get the total amount that you need. Make sure that it is a weight 4 (worsted) yarn. If you don’t know what the weight is try the wraps per inch method to figure out what weight it is.

  4. Aida says:

    OH my gosh!!!!!, I didn’t think it was possible Marly, you out-did yourself! This is sooooooo cool! Hmmmm….what of do, what to do?
    I’m in and super excited to get started. More than likely the husband will be annoyed that he has to make his own meals because I will be saying, “Be quiet, in knitting with Marly!” (Must share this with the circle at church. We could get our own group going!)

    • Marly Bird says:

      That would be so AWESOME if you get a little group together working on. If you do that please take a photo of everyone working together and post to the group page on FB! Would love to see!!!

  5. aussiealthea says:

    Would like to participate but won’t use Facebook. Wish the pattern was available via Ravelry or some other way.

    • Marly Bird says:

      You can still participate with us. All of the clues will be posted each week on the blog. If you aren’t on FB you just won’t have a great place to share photos of your finished work or have easy access to us and others if there is a question. Please still join us though!

    • Marly Bird says:

      The pattern itself will only be on the blog, and as PDF pattern to purchase after the event on Ravelry. Facebook is where we will be collecting images of what is going on and the place to ask questions. Be sure to join the Marly’s Minions FB group to participate.

  6. Janice says:

    I also do not have any social media acounts so hopefully I will be able to follow along on the blog. I would like to make this as a gift for my sister. What shape will the shawl be and what are the dimensions? Thank you for this wonderfully fun opportunity!

  7. Jaselyn says:

    This sounds great! Is there a gauge we should be aiming for if we’re knitting? I have some yarn in my stash I’d love to use for this, but I’m not sure it’s the right size. I’d like to test it before the make-along starts.


  8. Lilys Maman says:

    Hi Marly, I have to say I am so tickled to be participating in the Tourney. BTW your new picture is great!

Marly Bird

The One and Only, Marly

Marly is a knitwear and crochet designer (and yarn addict) that is here to help you learn how to knit and crochet in a way that's fun and approachable.

Meet Marly


Netflix & Chill

Simple projects for when you want to relax and zone out


Social Butterfly

Frustration-free projects that you can easily work on in public areas


Smooth Jazz

Projects that require a bit more intense focus (but music is nice!)


Shhh Be Quiet!

Advanced projects requiring deep focus (but a big payoff, too!)