learning how to knit

patmc102March 13, 2007

Is it possible that there are people who cannot learn to knit? I joined a beginers knitting class and everyone has learn the knit stich and purl. I on the other hand can't seem to handle two knitting needles. I can cast off like a pro but throw in that second needle and I am all thumbs. It has been a week and I still have the stiches falling off the second needle. I can do the "knit" but either it takes me forever or I lose it. Is there hope or should I just stick with crochet?

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One week isn't much time to give yourself to learn something new. If you were determined to learn another language, would you quit after a week because you can't hold a conversation with a native speaker?

Give yourself a chance. Stop worrying about what you can't do and relax. Focus on the fact that you're willing to expand your options.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2007 at 12:54PM
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I also wonder about the needles and yarn you are using--what size of each and what the needles are made of. Try using some wood or bamboo needles and you will find the stitches don't slip off as easily. My metal needles are the most slippery of all, and I do tend to drop stitches more when using them. It takes a while to be able to knit and not feel awkward--getting over the awkwardness is really what learning is all about!

    Bookmark   March 13, 2007 at 2:01PM
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Sheila mentioned the same thing I thought of, the size of the needles. The trend now for young people is to learn with monstrous sized needles - knit a scarf in an hour! I've been knitting for nearly 40 years, and I STILL have a hard time handling those big needles. And maybe circular bamboo needles will be lighter to work with (and you'll never drop a needle). As others have said, give yourself time and don't be discouraged. And don't compare yourself with others. This is supposed to be something to enjoy. It's not a competition.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2007 at 4:12PM
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The first time I tried to learn to knit, I was using acrylic yarn, which while great, is probably not the best to learn on. It didn't give and it hated me. My stitches were either too loose or too tight and never in between, and it varied from stitch to stitch.

Second time, I learned how to knit on the slipperiest needles ever. I was constantly dropping stitches. I used a wool yarn that time (and in a class...) and that worked a lot better. It stretches and flexes much nicer than acrylic.

I was the prodigy child in that class! I casted on, knit, purled and had started the pattern before all the other ladies in the class figured out how to cast on. But, I'm also a student and deal with having to learn new things fast every day, whereas these women were no longer in school and just learning to knit to learn something new.

In other words, don't quit so early! Some people learn faster than others, and some need extra help.

~ Kit

    Bookmark   March 13, 2007 at 7:56PM
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Cheap acrylic yarn has no give, so I avoid it. It also seems less soft when it is made up, I have noticed. I avoid the Michael's and WalMart's house brands because of no give.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2007 at 9:22PM
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It took me about 2 weeks to get it right. I was making the stitches too tight..or dropping them. I was determined to stick with it. I tried different yarns, and different size needles...and relaxed. I ended up using size 10 needles and boucle yarn. Also it helped me to sit in my computer chair, I was a little too leaned back in my recliner chair...even in the upright position. Once I got the hang of it..I couldn't stop...I wanted to stay awake and knit..and knit first thing in the morning..LOL...so don't give up..if it frustrates you..put it down awhile..and go back to it. Good luck, and can't wait to see your first project.


    Bookmark   March 14, 2007 at 12:50AM
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Don't give up! give it more time... If you're a crocheter, you can knit! It took me a long time (I won't tell you how long!) to get past the awkwardness of holding the needles, etc. For me it was a simple solution but it took me a long time to figure it out: I can't throw yarn well (where you hold the yarn with your right hand) but I knit continental with ease (hold the yarn with my left hand). I understand for crocheters sometimes this works better so, in addition to the other tips (yarn and needle size makes a huge difference, I work best with pretty slender needles), you might want to try this if you just aren't getting the hang of throwing, which I'm guessing is probably how you're being taught. It turned knitting around from something I enjoyed but didn't do well to something that I can feel good about now, and do with ease and comfort. It doesn't work for everyone but it's another thought. Best of luck, and hang in there!

    Bookmark   March 14, 2007 at 8:40AM
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What a differrence a few days make. I took everyone's suggestion. I got bamboo needles and wool yarn and I am happy to say I can now do a pretty good knit and purl. I can't thank you folks enought.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2007 at 8:11PM
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