Beginners KAL????

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AimeeInSC wrote
on Aug 14, 2009 7:01 AM

Hi Kathleen,

I am a crocheter and have been wanting to learn knitting. Would you consider doing a Begninners KAL?

Aimee

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on Aug 14, 2009 1:56 PM

Do you have an LYS in your town? It's so fun to be part of beginning knitting class, I'd recommend that as the best way to learn to knit.

If you don't have access to a class, there are lots of books out there you can use, and lots of online video references, too, on the Interweave site and YouTube and Knittinghelp.com

I don't think I'll be doing a KAL specifically for beginners, but check back for the next project, maybe the KDers will choose more of a beginner's project next time. I do know quite a few people have knit the Central Park Hoodie as their first sweater, though, so it's not too difficult.

Good luck to you!

Kathleen

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AimeeInSC wrote
on Aug 15, 2009 12:43 PM

Thanks Kathleen! What does LYS stand for?

Aimee

 

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AimeeInSC wrote
on Aug 15, 2009 12:49 PM

Duh, nevermind. Local Yarn Store.

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PuppyMom wrote
on Aug 17, 2009 9:07 PM

Crochet Junkie:

Hi Kathleen,

I am a crocheter and have been wanting to learn knitting. Would you consider doing a Begninners KAL?

Aimee

Hi Aimee,

I was a voracious crocheter, and still am.  But I wanted to learn to knit because although I think crocheting is great for afghans, scarves and some hats, I feel knitting lends itself much better to sweaters and other garments, and is much more versatile.  I never "took the plunge", so-to-speak, because I was afraid I would not be able to fix mistakes as easily as in crocheting.  That turned out to be correct, but once I learned how to TINK (knit spelled backwards), or un-knit, things got a lot easier.  I have not yet learned to "read" my knitted fabric as easily as I can crocheted fabric, but I'm sure that will come in time as well.

So, at the tender age of 56, I attended a 6-week beginners knitting class.  I was able to learn "the basics", knitting, purling, increasing, decreasing, gauge, etc.  The class project was a baby sweater.  I will have been knitting a year in October, and I have enjoyed each and every stitch immensly.

What you have to remember is that you are learning a whole new set of motor skills.  My biggest first hang-up was whether to knit "American/European" (pulling yarn from the right and "throwing" the stitches, or "Continental" (feeding the yarn from the left and "picking" the stitches).  I tried both, but because (right-handed) crocheters pull yarn from the left, I felt more comfortable going "Continental".  I have heard other crocheters say the same thing.  Also, the knitting movements are more economical when pulling yarn from the left.  You may find it easier to go "American/European"......this was just a personal preference for me.

It took quite a bit of time and practice, practice, practice until I felt comfortable just doing a simple knit and purl stitch, but once I got it down, it's almost automatic now.   Practice and patience are the keys!  My first projects were, what else, scarves, on straight needles. And although I have knitted several large shawls on circular needles, I still have not knitted anything in the round, because I'm really shy of DPN's (double-pointed needles).  However,  I'm going to dive in on my next project, which will be a hat.  I've been fiddling a bit with the "magic loop" (you can get some good videos on YouTube), because I'm much more comfortable using long circulars, but I know I'm going to have to use the dreaded DPN's eventually.

I rented many DVD's from the library, Elizabeth Zimmerman, the Leisure Arts Series, etc., but the one DVD I found most helpful is entitled "The Complete Beginner's Guide to Knitting" by Nici McNally.  I loved her upbeat personality.  She demonstrates all the basics, including how to fix mistakes, and there are 7 scarf patterns included.  This is a totally personal preference....there are many good instructional knitting books and DVD's out there.  Use your LYS and library for guidance.  YouTube is also a wonderful source for learning, and there a many knitting videos there as well.

My LYS is not the happiest place on earth, the owner is a bit dour, and the knitting circle is a bit "clique-ish" so I'm now learning on-the-fly, so-to-speak.  Just remember, this is not a skill one picks up overnight, but it's well worth the time & patience required to learn.

I hope you find knitting as enjoyable as I have.....I learn something (actually many somethings) new with every project. 

Good luck,

Andie

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