Sunday, January 15, 2006

Beginning Knitting - for Em

I always think the best way to begin knitting is by sitting with someone who can actually knit, and getting them to show you the basics.

Once you know how to cast on, Knit, and Purl you can do most basic patterns. Forget all the fancy stuff until you are ready to progress past those three basics. Then progress to binding off, increase and decrease.

You have no idea how many scarves I made for many years before I felt confident enough to do anything else (I distinctly remember telling my Mum that the scarf has a few "buttonholes" in them on purpose hehe).

I am still a very basic knitter. I can do a few "tricky" things but I am really slow still and I still have a tendancy to look at my knitting when I am knitting. (I have noticed really good knitters can look you in the face and talk to you while they are knitting - nope not me!). With the exception of scarves, I stick strictly to patterns and don't have the knowledge or imagination to work out how to alter patterns for any reason.

For the fancy stuff you need to see Katt, Cathy, Leeanne, Something from nothing, or Donna. They are the knitting queens.

For almost all the squares I have knitted (with the exception of the lighthouse), all you really needed to know was how to cast on, how to knit and purl, and how to cast off (bind off).

With just these skills you can do all those squares and they are really quite simple. Even though they look difficult.

The patterns are from here and they are free patterns.

If you can't find anyone to sit with to show you the basic knit patterns (I would more than happily sit with you, if, you know, we were like in the same country and stuff), then you can either find a simple book (look for one designed for teaching kids to knit, with nice clear pictures), or there are plenty of sites on the net that show you how to knit, some even now have video.

For the squares I used 8ply yarn and 4mm needles.

p.s. the offer to help out with basic knitting stuff is open to anyone living in Melbourne - I am more than happy to help if I can.

I know that probably doesn't help much, but I hope it gives you some motivation to at least give it a go. Knitting is a heap of fun once you get started and it is lovely to end up with something that YOU made.

p.s.s. Patty - I so wish we lived closer - I would love to learn how to crochet. I recently bought some crochet hooks and I am determined I am going to learn this time. I have tried so many times and never get past "make a chain" before I lose interest and walk away. LOL.


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