How to read my charts

I always try to make the charts as comprehensible as possible, but still I've decided to write this post with all the explanations. Since I concentrate my focus on brioche patterns, I'm going to do that here also. So let's take this chart for example:
I'm going to explain as if I would start knitting this pattern, what my process would be.

How many stitches to cast-on?
  1. I count how many stitches are included in the repeated part of the pattern. In my charts I always write like in this case: "Cast-on a multiple of 30 + 1 (symmetry) + 2 (edge)". That means that the repeated part of the pattern consists of 30 stitches, so if one repeat is not enough for my project, for example a scarf, I multiply this number according to the width of the project. Let's say I want to knit a scarf as wide as 2 repeats of the pattern. In this case I will cast-on 60 stitches for the repeat part, but that's not all. 
  2. You have to read the rest of my instructions, the "+ 1 (symmetry) + 2 (edge)" part. That means that to my example of 60 stitches you have to add 1 stitch for the symmetry of the pattern and 2 edge stitches. The symmetry stitches are colored in purple and usually it's 1 stitch, but it could be more. 
  3. The edge stitches are always present in my flat brioche patterns. In my other patterns I can omit them, when there are no yarn overs on the edges, in this case you can knit without edge stitches, but still, I always do. There are many ways to knit the edge stitches, but I use this one: knit the first edge stitch and slip purlwise with yarn in front the last edge stitch. In two-color brioche we are working with 2 colors of yarn but the edges are usually in color A (at least that's how I do it :). And if you want to have the same chain-like edges in color A, that I have, you have to follow the chart indications on how to knit the edge stitches.
    How two-color brioche works and how that reflects in my charts

    Usually when you knit a simple pattern, you knit the right side, then turn the work and knit the wrong side. When you knit a two-color brioche pattern, you have 2 colors of yarn, and you do the same, but twice : you knit the right side with color A yarn, then knit the right side with color B yarn, then you knit twice on the wrong side, first with color A, then with color B.
    The way I make my two-color brioche charts, I always start on the right side with color A, and all the increases, decreases, cables, everything that forms the pattern, happens in this row on right side when working with color A yarn. I call this row a "pattern row".

    If I could compare the two-color brioche with a simple pattern where you are forming the pattern on the right side, and then on the wrong side you just continue it, like for example, you purl across. Then in two-color brioche this row on the right side in color A, is the same - you form the pattern by increasing, decreasing etc. And the other 3 rows: right side with color B, wrong side with color A and wrong side with color B yarn, are like purling across (I usually have the same 3 rows that are repeating). So that's why my charts go like this:

    Row 1 is a set-up row (because we have to introduce the yarn over, in order to start forming the brioche)

    Rows 2-3-4 are like I said earlier the way to consolidate the pattern formed in the previous row, so we are repeating these rows after the set-up row and after each "pattern row".

    Rows 5, 9, 13, 17 etc.  are "pattern rows", where all the "action" is happening. They create the pattern and form the repeat. So that's why in my two-color brioche charts I always indicate: "Repeat rows 5 to ...", and not "1 to...". After a while of knitting two-color brioche, rows 2-3-4 are knitted in automatic, and you have to follow the chart only when you are knitting the "pattern rows" and need to know where to increase, decrease etc.

    The black frame 

     Everything inside the black frame is the repeated pattern. 

    In the example chart from above, you can see that rows 5-21 are inside the black frame. That means that you have to repeat rows 5 to 21, and since you know that you have to knit rows 2-3-4 after each of these rows , that means that in fact the repeated pattern goes from row 5 to 24.

    The stitches on the sides that aren't included in the black frame are the edge and symmetry stitches.
    So you start the row with an edge stitch (green color), then repeat the part in the black frame (pink and blue color) and then in the end you knit the symmetry stitches (purple color) and the last edge stitch (green color).