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Monday, May 16, 2011

Knitty Gal??

Published by Erica at 8:55 AM

I went to Atlanta a few weeks ago to visit family and friends over our Spring Break. While I was there, we went to Stitches South, an annual knitting (but also everything yarn-related) expo that goes on in various regions across the United States.

While there, my best friend and I decided (on an impulse) to sign up for a free Learn to Knit course. My husband (who DID want to come with us, no one forced him) very kindly took my daughter around to look at everything while we sat there in the class, fiddling about with two sticks.

Here are my very first knit stitches, ever. I dropped that one knitting needle so many times. Lost loops off the needle. Couldn't figure out how to hold my hands...



...and yet, the bug took hold of me. I bought some pretty yarn (Wisdom "Poems," bought from the Stitches booth manned by my local Charlotte yarn store - buying local even while traveling! How cool is that?) and just kept trying.


Here is me, working in basic stockinette stitch. This little project kept my attention on the long drive back home from Atlanta.



By the way, the best thing I did for myself was to purchase some circular knitting needles. These are so much easier to work with (for me) than straights.

Of course, when I got back home, I immediately went to Ravelry to find some interesting new-knitter patterns. The Noro Striped Scarf was an obvious choice for me, since it involved learning a new stitch (knit 1 - purl 1 to create ribbing that doesn't curl up at the edges), AND learning how to change yarns in a project. Actually, this works pretty much just like crochet.

Here is the scarf in its early stages...




...and here it is as of last Friday, though I keep working on it. I have become fairly quick at it. It turns out I am a continental knitter, which means I keep the yarn flowing through the fingers of my left hand. We learned to knit English style, but that never felt natural to me. As I have kept up with my knitting practice, the yarn sort of found its way over to the left hand (as with crochet) and my knitting dexterity has increased commensurately.




If you mainly come here for crochet, don't worry. I'm still crocheting like crazy, and can't wait to show you what I've been working on during my lunch hours. But there may be a good bit of knitting talk as well, while I continue to advance in this new skill! You CAN teach an old dog new tricks, I tell you.

17 comments:

Scribe said...

that is awesome! congrats! i recently taught myself to knit on YouTube... scoured a million kajillion videos until i saw it from every angle... still a crocheter through and through... but i met some local yarnies (knit whits) who have shown me lots of new tricks... they say i "throw my yarn from the wrong side, like a crocheter"... like you... but as long as it works, its fine. i've crocheted for nearly 28 years (just turned 36) and i'm currently fascinated with knitting...

GREAT POST!

Tickety-boo said...

Well done you! Knitting away. Now you can have the thrill of cheating on your hook with the pointy sticks of doom every now and again. It keeps the yarny relationship alive!
If you are working circulars maybe you can start toe up socks.....Then where will it all end?????
Love Tickety-boo xxx

Erica said...

Hahahha, you're right Tickety-boo, it DOES feel like cheating. The sticks call to me, with their newness, and the half-finished crochet afghan sulks in its box, making those eyes at me.

And thanks for your note, Scribe! It did help to learn knit and purl stitch in person, but I couldn't get by without Youtube and Ravelry to help out when I'm up at midnight.

Cris said...

I primarily crochet mostly because I don't have the patience for knitting *laughing* Oddly, I like the yarn on the right side even though I've been crocheting for 30 years. Sometimes I pull out the sticks to see if I "still can" and then realize I can but choose not LOL

melbatoast68 said...

Yeah! Good for you! I've been working on my knitting and it is slow going. I've heard everyone say that crocheters have a tendency to lean towards continental knitting, but I'm finding it all very awkward. I love the scarf. It's going to be gorgeous!

delia hornbook said...

Wow well done you ;-)) that scarf is looking fantastic. I have never seen circular knitting needles they look great. Have fun with it, dee x

by Teresa said...

Erica, I'm proud of you. I think it's admirable to be able to do both. I have knitted several things, but crochet is my "baby" - it's so much easier for me and the worst part of knitting is when you goof up and trying to put stuff back on a needle. Fixing a good in crochet is soooooOOoo much easier! Hugs, Teresa

by Teresa said...

I meant fixing a GOOF.. lol

Hookin It With Mr. Lick Lick said...

Hey Erica! I tried to knit....but I didn't have the circular needles. I wonder if that would be the ticket for me too? I had a heck of a time, I kept dropping stitches.

Erica said...

Thanks for all the comments! Teresa, I agree that correcting crochet mistakes is MUCH easier. I'm learning to "read" my knitting so I can see where the dropped stitch actually IS among all the yarn. :-)

And Kat, I definitely recommend trying it again with the circulars. I think their appeal (for me) is that they are closer in size to a crochet hook. The long straight needles just feel awkward and inflexible. Give it a shot! :-)

acwmaiden said...

Yeay! Someone else who has been seduced ;-D I've been crocheting for 20 some-odd year and taught myself how to knit last year January, also continental (though I hear using both hands is great for colorwork....). I prefer the look of knitted wearable items, but I have to say, knitting has incresed my crochet diversity because it introduced me to yarn other than acrylic worsted weight ;-D

Grace said...

Fantastic looking scarf-- I'm so proud of you! :) I will always treasure the memory of you and I learning that skill together, though your knitting is progressing in leaps and bounds, as I knew it would. I'm happy I know how to do both now, too, and love the 'lay' of knit, though crocheting animals still speaks to me.

Love ya, keep showing your stuff, love to see it!
xoxoxoxoxo
T

Sandy said...

I took a knitting class with a friend during the first few years after I graduated from High School. That's a long time ago. Our project was slippers but I never finished them. I remember - at that time - I couldn't knit and watch TV. I have my MIL's knitting needles (although I don't remember seeing her knit with them). I have thought about trying knitting again. There are some cute things out there where both crocheting and knitting are used together (fingerless mittens comes to mind). Also, I just purchased Jan Eaton's book "200 Ripple Stitch Patterns" which is half knitting and half crocheting patterns. There's some cute knitting ones in there. I'm like you though I wouldn't give up crocheting EVER!

Crochet with Raymond said...

great stuff erica! It's fun to be able to do both, the opportunities to make (and buy yarn ha ha!) are endless, your scarf is looking wonderful!
XXX

illy said...

I hate your blog: bad camera, post's too far apart from each other, ad you have a cheesy blog. I don't like your blogging you should just stop

illy said...

Horrible camera

Erica said...

cool, my first troll! who has her own blog about a "full bread" terrier. hahahahaha you made my day, Illy - thanks for stopping by.

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