Over the past several years, knitting has become something of a trend and has been touted as being a favourite past-time of celebrities, models and busy professionals. And for good reason! Not only does knitting come with a slew of health benefits, it is also a beautiful art form that can be used to make clothing, accessories, toys - essentially anything one can think of! Knitting is fairly simple to learn, but there are a handful of tricks new knitters should keep in mind when embarking on their first project. Without further ado, here are the eight tips every knitter should know.
- START SIMPLE WITH CHUNKY YARN
For those who are brand new to yarn, using fiddly, delicate yarn can be somewhat disheartening. It tangles and breaks easily. It also will show off even the slightest flaw, whether it is poor tension or a skipped stitch. That's not to say that new knitters should only use thick yarn, but it is definitely a more forgiving way to begin. There are a ton of tutorials online that demonstrate how to create an ultra-cozy chunky blanket in no-time. Creating simple patterns using thick yarn is a great way to learn and results in pieces that are incredibly simple but look professional.
2. CIRCULAR NEEDLES CAN BE USED FOR FLAT PROJECTS TOO
Think that circular needles can't be used to knit flat pieces? Think again! Straight knitting needles are natural escape artists. You put them down for a second and before you know it they have somehow made it into the island of lost knitting needles. Circular needles stay together and so this pesky problem is eliminated. Simply knit back and forth the way you would with regular needles instead of joining your knitted rows onto the circle.
3. FREE MINI CLASSES ARE AT YOUR FINGER TIPS
Don't have time to take a knitting class? Why not learn in your own home by watching online tutorials by expert knitters? There are tons of talented people out there who can teach you every stitch, binding technique and pattern you've ever wanted to learn. YouTube is a treasure trove of tutorials and, unlike with a traditional class, you can learn these skills according to your own schedule!
4. TRY DIFFERENT TYPES OF NEEDLES TO FIND YOUR FAVOURITE
Much in the same way that everyone has a favourite colour or ice-cream flavour, different knitters prefer different knitting needle materials. Each has their merits (plastic is inexpensive making it a good choice for a new knitter while wood is light and flexible and glides effortlessly through yarn), but preferences are entirely subjective. For a quick run-through of knitting needle materials, check out this helpful guide.
5. DON'T BE AFRAID TO CHALLENGE YOURSELF
Okay, so you are a new knitter and you successfully made your first few projects. Don't feel like you have to only knit scarves, wash cloths and socks for the rest of your days! As you learn a new skill, push yourself to learn the next one. After all, if you make a mistake, you can try again until you master it. The most talented knitters aren't afraid to step out of the box, so play with stitches and try different patterns!
6. TERRIFIC TENSION COMES WITH TIME
It's very, very rare that anyone is able to master any new skill the first time that they try it. Knitting with flawless tension takes time and it's very normal for stitches and rows to look uneven in the beginning. Whether your stitches are too tight or loose, just know that practice will make perfect and, before long, your tension will be instinctive and will look fabulous. In the meantime, watch this quick tutorial on tension.
7. MASTER CASTING ON AND CASTING OFF
Just like the saying 'you can't run until you can walk', you can't knit until you can cast on! Learn how to cast on properly, whether you use the knit cast-on or the long-tail cast-on method. Once you've learned them you will remember them forever and will be able to start a new project at a moment's notice. It's also crucial to learn how to properly cast off. There are several different techniques, but it's important to be able to finish your project successfully. There is nothing more annoying than spending ages on a pattern, only to have it unravel when you mess up your cast off. Learn these basic skills and learn 'em well. You will save time, frustration and yarn!
8. JOIN A KNITTING CLUB
This one is a no-brainer - after all, isn't everything more fun with friends? Joining a group of like-minded individuals is a great way to expand your social circle and it will motivate you to learn more and more about knitting. You can trade tips and patterns while laughing and sharing great conversation. What could possibly be better?
OUR TOP NEW KNITTING PICKS
Here are a few of our latest and greatest knitting arrivals! We are constantly getting new items, so it is a good idea to periodically check our website for our newest products.
- Knitting Board 'Premium' Chunky Round Loom Set
- Knitting Board Baby Knit Loom Set
- Knitter's Pride Ginger Special Interchangeable Circular Needles
- Prym Ergonomic Single Point Pins (Knitting Needles)
- Yarn Valet Yarn Dispenser
- Yazzii Knitting Needle Case in Navy
Do you have any questions or comments? We would love to hear from you! Chat with us in the comment section or send us a message at firstname.lastname@example.org.