Monday, March 12, 2012

Monday Project - Learning to Knit

I'm learning to knit!  That probably doesn't sound too amazing, but I've tried several times in the past with less than glorious results.  I've crocheted for over 40 years, can embroider, sew, surface design fabric, do simple weaving, ... pretty much any fiber art, but not knitting!  I knew that knitting would be part of the fibers class I'm taking this semester and was a little worried, given my past track record.  We've been working on it for the past couple weeks and between help in class, a good book, and a set of great videos on the internet I do believe it's taking!

If you've been thinking of learning to knit, here are some suggestions from my own experience.  Find someone to help you - take a class, hang around a yarn store, find a friend who knits.  That's not enough, though!  While you're actually in the presence of someone who knits, everything makes sense.  It's like their knitting aura envelopes you!  Then you go home, try to continue, and amnesia sets in.  There's so much that seeing it done in person helps with and having someone to answer questions is invaluable, but they won't be there 24/7 so .... I highly recommend the set of beginner videos on  And if the English (also called American) style doesn't feel comfortable, try the Continental method.  That's when everything started really clicking for me - maybe because it uses a lot of the same hand movements as crochet does.

I also bought Leisure Arts' I Can't Believe I'm Knitting!  There are great color photos of everything covered - and everything I'm wondering at this point is covered - basic stitches, troubleshooting, how to change colors, how to add or decrease stitches, .... And it goes into some more intermediate subjects like knitting socks and cable stitches.  Enough to keep me busy for a long time!  If you follow the link above, you can preview the book on Amazon.

I dislike making swatches - I'm doing a few required ones for my class, but they seem so useless to me.  So I'm beginning a set of dish washing cloths that use all the stitches and techniques I'm learning.  I have a few inches done on the first one (actually a few inches several times - I'm getting really good at taking out rows back to mistakes) and will show you how it turns out, with instructions in case you want to try it too.

Okay - back to knitting!

Happy Creating!  Deborah

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